A recent skirmish between Iran and Israel put the spotlight back on one of the most sensitive territories in the world.
To understand how Syria has become the theatre for proxy wars between international forces, one has to return to the Arab uprisings and Syria's role as an outlier.
Iran is a dangerous mischief-maker in the Middle East – but scrapping the nuclear deal will probably make things worse.
Despite all claims to secular egalitarianism, the Assad family's decades of rule have been brutally elitist.
A recent intervention by the US, the UK and France is only part of a far broader – and deadlier – campaign.
If states are permitted to determine when force is warranted, outside the existing legal framework, the legitimacy of that framework may be fatally undermined.
Donald Trump, Emmanuel Macron and Theresa May all have something to prove at home by bombing Syria.
While the Syria strikes were clearly violating international law, using force to uphold the ban on chemical weapons is becoming acceptable in the international community.
The Syrian conflict is a war of many sides. Here's a rundown of the key players.
The legal standards for military intervention are complicated and highly specific. It's not clear an attack on Syria would meet them.
Even if Syria's armed conflict is somehow resolved, new proxy conflicts between regional actors are emerging on the country's soil.
Despite a devastating toll in the seven-year conflict, which has seen 400,000 people killed and six million displaced, there is no end in sight for the people of Syria.
Outside observers are keen to declare the Syrian conflict almost over. It is anything but.
Turkey's priorities in Syria just don't match the US's – and its increasingly authoritarian domestic politics don't help.
Denial and obfuscation have always been a part of chemical warfare.
The Middle East could be witnessing a foreign policy misfire of epic proportions.
Donald Trump's predecessor once made an empty threat against Bashar al-Assad – and it didn't end well.
Trump's attack on Assad's air force was opportunist and reckless. It was also long overdue.
Was this a one-off intervention – or a sign that Trump will undertake more of an effort to undermine the Assad regime?