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Hezbollah Under Fire

Could the Bombing in Beirut Spell the End of the Shia Group?

A Supporter of Hezbollah gestures as he stands at the site of a car bomb in Beirut's southern suburbs, August 15, 2013. Hasan Shaaban / Courtesy Reuters

Hassan Nasrallah has to wonder whether his approach to the civil war in Syria is starting to backfire. In a recent speech in the southern suburbs of Beirut on a Shiite day of mourning, the Hezbollah chief, in a rare public appearance, urged hundreds of followers to continue the fight against Sunni extremists in Syria. The result, he claimed, would be to spare his Shiite organization and Lebanon as a whole from Sunni extremism. But the double bombing that hit the Iranian embassy in Beirut this afternoon, killing more than 23 people, shows that Nasrallah’s preventive war in Syria is having exactly the opposite effect.

It is not just that al Qaeda, despite Hezbollah’s military advances in Syria, has been able to penetrate deep into the Shiite party’s sphere of influence and wreak havoc. More important is that the same extremists that Nasrallah was hoping to fight outside

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