The staggering statistics emerging from the ongoing five-year-old military conflict in Syria – including over 220,000 killed, more than one million injured and about 7.6 million displaced – are prompting calls for a United Nations arms embargo on the beleaguered regime of President Bashar al-Assad.
In a satirical piece titled 'An Unserious Look at the Year Ahead' in the Wall Street Journal last week, Hugo Rifkind predicts the price of a barrel of oil will fall so low that people across the world would start buying oil for the barrel - and throw the oil out.
As U.N. peacekeeping operations assume a more agressive role in conflict zones, the first concrete results came last week when the armed forces of the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) defeated the M23 rebel group after a 20-month-long insurgency.
The United States, which is preoccupied with the ongoing political and military developments in Syria, is still saddled with an unresolved problem elsewhere in the Middle East: the military takeover of Egypt's first democratically-elected government.
When the dust settles from the ongoing deadly confrontations between the Egyptian armed forces and thousands of Islamist protesters in the streets of Cairo and Alexandria, the eventual winner will be the United States - specifically U.S.-made weapons systems in the hands of the country's 440,000-strong military.