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As Iran continues to absorb its recent setbacks in Iraq, one place where both the Islamic Republic and Saudi Arabia appear to be aiming to contain any Sunni-Shiite confrontation is Lebanon.While Jumblatt represents a small community, he has been active, with Berri, in trying to effect a rapprochement between Sunnis and Shiites.Hezbollah may be under duress in Syria, but that only makes it more determined to bring in a Lebanese president who will give it the political cover it wants.Nor does Hezbollah appear to be in any hurry to have a new president, given the uncertainties in Syria and Iraq. A corner has indeed been turned, but what looms ahead is something far more worrisome for Hezbollah, Assad and many others.Lebanese sectarian relations seem manageable for now, which has been reinforced by shared Sunni and Shiite outrage with the Israeli assault on Gaza. If the Iranians want to calm tensions with the Sunnis, it will not be enough to do so in Lebanon and even Iraq, while pursuing policies elsewhere, above all in Syria, that enrage Sunnis.Iran and Hezbollah must grasp that lesson, or else their expedient efforts to placate Sunnis will all be for nothing.
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