As fresh details emerge about the suspected Israeli airstrike in Syria last week, key facts – like what the strike targeted – remain muddled.
The Assad regime says the attack underscores the need for unity. The opposition has contrasted the regime's lack of response with its relentless attacks on its own people.
Russia's actions regarding its citizens in Syria have been under close watch in the West, in hopes that it might signal an about-face from Syria's biggest foreign backer.
UN envoy Brahimi implied President Assad might not have a role in a future government, while Russia says only Syrians can make that call. Meanwhile, rebels said they took control of a key military base.
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad made a rare public speech yesterday that, outside the regime, is seen as offering nothing more than many more months of violence.
President Bashar al-Assad's first speech in months dashed any hopes that a negotiated settlement to the Syrian civil war was soon possible.
Many believed 2012 would be Syrian President Bashar al-Assad's last year in power, but at the outset of 2013 the conflict appears locked in a stalemate with alarming fatality rates.
The popular unrest of the last two years has left the Middle East volatile as 2013 kicks off.
The United Nations' envoy to Syria Lakhdar Brahimi argued against hopes that the country could find stability by devolving into a set of smaller states.
Policymakers in many of the world's hot spots have a common New Year's wish: for unity to usher in and consolidate political and economic stability.
The plan from UN special envoy to Syria, Lakhdar Brahimi, is unlikely to gain traction without more concessions to the Syrian opposition.