Islamic militants’ sweep through northern Iraq and the collapse of the Iraqi army threaten to undo whatever was accomplished after the U.S. invaded the country and ousted dictator Saddam Hussein 11 years ago.
The failure of the first round of Syrian peace talks to achieve even their most modest goal -- allowing humanitarian access to the city of Homs -- threatens to derail the effort to end the country’s civil war.
While U.S.-backed Syrian opposition leaders in Washington are lobbying for better weapons, the Syrian government has forced rebels to abandon the city of Homs, a bastion of the revolt against President Bashar al-Assad.
Syrian government forces and their Hezbollah allies from Lebanon pounded rebels yesterday in an offensive to retake the strategic city of Al-Qusair, as the country’s civil war escalates into a regional conflict.
Sometime after midnight on a recent Thursday in Damascus, restaurant manager Aziz Asfahani joined friends at the newly opened Bartini lounge bar, where Syria’s elite dine and dance till dawn on tabletops to the thump of patriotic songs.
The powerful brother of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad is suspected of authorizing the chemical weapons attack that killed hundreds of Syrian civilians, according to a United Nations official who monitors armed conflicts in the region.
The U.S. will provide small arms and ammunition to the Syrian opposition amid recent battlefield setbacks by rebels and after saying it confirmed that Bashar al- Assad’s forces used chemical weapons in the civil war.