A Blog by the Editor of The Middle East Journal

Putting Middle Eastern Events in Cultural and Historical Context

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Syria Reminds Us the War Goes On

I admit to being preoccupied with events in Egypt lately, but with the latest allegations of chemical weapons use in the eastern outskirts of Damascus, Syria is forcibly reminding the world that the bloodshed there has not gone away. Regardless of whether chemical weapons were actually used, it seems clear that significant civilian casualties have been inflicted, including children.

The ongoing violence in Iraq, despite its recent intensification, seems to have dropped off the world's radar. But Syria has not yet completely been forgotten. And as the attack on Hizbullah in Beirut's southern suburb recently reminded us, Lebanon is increasingly torn by the war next door. Hizbullsh, which more or less invented the car bomb in the 1980s, now finds itself on the receiving end, but it is also increasingly a major combatant inside Syria.

The future does not seem bright.

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