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Syria was once one of the Middle East's most stable states. Today it is a country on its knees. Almost 20,000 people are estimated to have died in its bloody internal conflict and, as the violence intensifies, Syria's future looks bleak.
In this timely book, Samer Abboud provides an in-depth analysis of Syria's descent to civil war. He unravels the complex and multi-layered causes of the current political and military stalement -from rebel fragmentation to the differing roles of international actors, and the rise of competing centers of authority, he contends, have exarcebated Syria's fragmentation and fragility. This, in turn, has aided the survival of the Assad regime, contributed to the upsurge of sectarianism, and led to a major humanitarian crisis as nine million Syrians have been forced to flee their homes.
A resolution to the Syrian conflict seems unlikely in the short-term as the major actors remains committed to a military solution. As this situation persists, the continued fighting is reshaping Syria's borders and will have repercussions on the wider Middle East for decades to come.
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