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Map of the British Empire, 1886. By Colomb, J. C. R., via Norman B. Leventhal Map Center.

By Taylor Marvin

Map of the British Empire, 1886. By Colomb, J. C. R., via Norman B. Leventhal Map Center.
Map of the British Empire, 1886. By Colomb, J. C. R., via Norman B. Leventhal Map Center.

Britain, France urged to show restraint before arming Syrian rebels. And just how formidable are Syrian air defenses? Last year Brian T. Haggerty looked at the requirements of an air campaign (pdf).

How Qatar seized control of the Syrian revolution: “People will remember those who gave without having an agenda. The Syrians are clever, they know when there is an agenda.”

Reminders of just how complex the Syrian conflict is: Rebels guard a government-held, and indispensable, hydroelectric plant, and John McCain accidentally posed with rebels accused of kidnapping Lebanese Shiites.

Finally, The Atlantic collects recent photojournalism from the conflict.

In Afghanistan, a bombing and a graduation.

The Iranian government beefs up security in the rapidly-developing lead up to next month’s election.

The Federation of American Scientists looks at the economic costs of a conflict with Iran.

The Economist talks to journalist Jeremy Scahill about his new book Dirty Wars: The World is a Battlefield.

Excellent blog The Smoke-Filled Room has started a weekly reading list. Check it out.

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