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Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, centre, chairs the weekly cabinet meeting at his office in Jerusalem on Nov. 24, 2013. The international community’s nuclear deal with Iran has helped stabilize another looming threat: The very real potential that Israel might launch a military attack against Iran’s nuclear facilities.
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, centre, chairs the weekly cabinet meeting at his office in Jerusalem on Nov. 24, 2013. The international community’s nuclear deal with Iran has helped stabilize another looming threat: The very real potential that Israel might launch a military attack against Iran’s nuclear facilities.
(Abir Sultan/Associated Press)

Doug Saunders

Four reasons why the Iran deal really matters

On the surface, little has changed: Iran will not stop enriching uranium. The world will not stop applying sanctions to Iran. Iran and Israel have not become anything less than hostile to one another. Iran remains an authoritarian theocracy.

But the diplomatic accord reached early Sunday morning between Iran and the West is about far more than its relatively limited contents. The deal itself (which only applies for six months) is in some ways the least important factor in this new relationship. Here are four reasons why this new diplomatic reality matters: