When US President Barack Obama offered his rationale for supporting the UN imposed no-fly zone over Libyan skies, he said that "We knew that if we waited one more day, Benghazi - a city nearly the size of Charlotte - could suffer a massacre that would have reverberated across the region and stained the conscience of the world."
Despite promising political reform and a repeal of the country's emergency laws last week, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad has ordered his army to quell the pro-democracy protests in a number of cities.
Hundreds gunned down in the streets. Jails packed to overflowing. A ruthless dictatorship brutalising its own people in order to cling on to power. As a description of recent events in Bashar Assad's Syria, you'd be hard pushed to paint a clearer picture.
The capture of an arms shipment from Syria, bound for Gaza, revealed attempts by Hamas to obtain advanced capabilities with which to threaten Israeli shipping and natural gas installations in the Mediterranean.
The German-owned Victoria, a container-ship on a routine voyage through ports in the eastern Mediterranean, took on a shipment in the Syrian port of Latakia on Monday.
William Hague has called on Syria to “support efforts towards a comprehensive peace with Israel”.
Mr Hague, who is in Syria for his first official visit as Foreign Secretary, also said that the British government’s position is to oppose settlement building and support Syria’s claim on the Golan Heights, which have been under Israeli control for 44 years.
The British government is refusing to release documents which could shed light on the fate of three Israeli soldiers missing since 1982 because it says sensitive information could harm diplomatic relations with Syria.
On June 11 1982, three Israeli soldiers went missing after a battle with Syrian and Palestinian forces near the Lebanese village of Sultan Yaqub in the last moments of the Lebanon war. Zachary Baumel, Yehuda Katz and Zvi Feldman, all in their 20s at the time, are still officially MIA - missing in action.