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By Donald Lambro
Growth spikes are little more than trend-free anomalies
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
Topic - Walid Jumblatt
Syria's conflict is increasing instability in Lebanon, which already is grappling with sectarian tensions, a crumbling economy, and a weak, divided government even as it so far has avoided the popular uprisings of its Middle East neighbors.
Hezbollah secured the support from a majority of parliament Monday to nominate its candidate for prime minister, putting the Iranian-backed militant group in position to control Lebanon's new government.
The discovery of a gigantic natural-gas reservoir less than 100 miles off Israel's coast seems like great news for the diplomatically and militarily embattled country. The gas finding will strengthen Israel's energy security, enable it to become an important gas exporter and contribute wealth to its economy.
"It is part of Hezbollah's plan to create a state within a state," said Walid Jumblatt, a Druse leader.