If the UN Security Council does not act soon to stop the carnage and ensure that those who are responsible for these systematic violations of international standards are held accountable, there is a real danger that humanitarian law -- which aims to protect civilians in the midst of war -- will be as devastated as the health care system in Syria.
Even before American hegemony emerged after World War II, birthday boy George Washington's Farewell Address admonition to avoid "permanent alliances" and focus on neutrality had long since been ignored. Now we have a worldwide web of alliances, mostly of our own instigation, and involvement in a whole host of wars.
Some families were in self-constructed shelters, using plastic sheets and pieces of wood. Many of their shelters had let in snow and water -- bringing misery to their inhabitants trying to stay warm. Aid agencies politely call the living conditions of these people "substandard." In truth, they are squalid and often unfit for human habitation.
During a recent visit to Lebanon, walking along Hamra Street, I was taken back to my childhood. My father and I meandered down this road en route to my favorite spot. Constantly stopped by friends, eager to talk, it seemed to take forever to reach the Modca Cafe, and the ice cream I so eagerly anticipated.
The war in Syria has caused a hunger emergency in the Middle East. On Thanksgiving Eve it was announced that the U.S. Food for Peace program is donating US $125 million to feed the war victims. The donation will go to the UN World Food Programme (WFP), which is feeding over four million Syrians inside the war-torn country.
According to the White House, the decision to send additional military advisors represents a new phase of U.S. strategy in dealing with the Islamic State in Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS). To the contrary, I'll argue that this augmentation in the number of military advisors represents failure and a lack of a clear strategy for dealing with ISIS.