It's time to take the lead on Syria

So because Syria cannot get everything it wants without destroying itself, and Syria’s allies in Iran (and, to a lesser extant, Russia) presumably want Assad to remain — also unacceptable — we should consider what the international community wants instead. And what the international community wants is stability.

In addition to the thousands of deaths — as many as 13,000 — and the humanitarian crisis that will dump thousands of refugees, well, somewhere, the chaos in Syria is also a magnet for terrorist groups like Al Qaeda, making this problem an international one, and, in particular, a national security problem for the whole of the Western world.

What now?

Talk is cheap, as they say in Hollywood. “Diplomacy” and a “peace plan” have resulted in Germany, Italy, Spain, France, Britain, Australia, Canada and now the U.S. expelling Syrian ambassadors and diplomats. When all the diplomats are gone, how exactly does diplomacy work?