With geopolitical, sectarian and civil divisions honing in on Syria, there are currently three possible outcomes: a victory for the regime, a victory for the overwhelmingly Islamist opposition or an endless war leading to the disintegration of Syria as we know it. None is preferable.
More than the violence or the fear of renewed civil war, what has put Lebanon on the brink is the flood of Syrian refugees who are overwhelming the country, threatening it with economic collapse and its capacity to survive as a state.
Imagine a large salami in the center of a table. First, Putin offers to cut the salami down the middle. He takes out his knife and cuts it. Then puts one half in his bag. He looks at the remaining salami on the table and says, "Now let's talk about how we'll divide the salami."
What will ultimately define any conflict with Syria is the fact that we will have crossed a digital line, where are enemies can retaliate quickly and effectively without launching a single plane or missile.
Some in the U.S. concluded that at long last, Tehran desires a thaw in its relations with Washington and a normalization. I remain skeptical, hoping they are correct, but unwilling to make that leap for a number of reasons.
Our eyes glaze over when we read statistics of the horrific mayhem ravaging Syria. Numbers lose all meaning. One way for Americans to appreciate what those figures mean is to compute what the impact would be if the same tragedy were devastating the United States.
While people donate to charities, give blood, and send food, medicine and supplies, there's still a yearning to contribute energetically from the heart to focus our love and care towards those in need.