February 25, 2014
A strategy to rescue diplomacy on Syria
The Syrian crisis is rapidly turning into a humanitarian and security nightmare with regional and possibly global implications. The conflict is now firmly entrenched in a military stalemate. While "stalemate" conveys a sense of stasis, the impasse translates into the deepening deterioration of conditions on the ground. Meanwhile, the supercharged sectarian dynamic emanating from Syria is severely threatening regional stability, particularly in Iraq and Lebanon, which have both witnessed significant increases in sectarian violence.
The conflict's severity underscores that neither a disavowal of diplomacy nor its failure are options, yet the Geneva II process is faltering badly. If it fails, the conflict's partisans and their external patrons will likely default to escalation and increased militarisation.
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