Iran's Allies Gain Clout

(AP-Washington Post) Brian Murphy - From Afghanistan to the Mediterranean, evidence of Iran's reach is easy to spot: as a power broker in Iraq, in deep alliances with Syria, and as a big brother to Lebanon's Hizbullah and Hamas in Gaza. Tehran's proxy portfolio suddenly has a bit more aura after Hizbullah's latest successful political gambit in Lebanon. To those keeping score, it would appear that Iran is winning some important points around the Middle East at the expense of Washington and its allies. "Certainly there is more visible Iranian influence around the region," said Salman Shaikh, director of the Brookings Doha Center in Qatar. "But these are no longer just vassals of Iran. As they move into political roles, there will be changes that Iran cannot control."

2011-01-27 09:57:19

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