“This month marks the seventh anniversary of the start of the Syrian Civil War,” notes Trey Dimsdale in this week’s Acton Commentary. “Syria was, albeit governed by dictator Bashar al-Assad, a stable nation but today it is in ruins, with so many fault lines and battlefields that it is nearly impossible to sort out the contending interests inside the nation. The ripples of the conflict have reached every continent.”
The war has given rise to the Islamic State, has triggered a mass migration of 5.6 million refugees into Europe and other regions, and has resulted in, according to one estimate, more than 500,000 deaths – and counting. The sets of belligerents, co-belligerents, allies, and enemies are complex and fractured. Many are functioning as the ground proxies of foreign powers and groups. Most nations are fearful of engaging too deeply in the conflict lest they become trapped in an unwinnable quagmire, or worse, help to ignite a world war.
The full text of the essay can be found here.