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In Syria, the sheer physical and human devastation undermines the prospects of a viable state for years to come. The stats are almost incomprehensible: more than half the population depends on humanitarian aid to make it through the day.

Some three million kids are not attending school—in a population of twenty-two million. Besides a staggering death toll, one and a half million people have been injured or permanently disabled. Life expectancy is down fifteen years from when the civil war started, in 2011.

Almost one out of five citizens has fled the country altogether. They may have little incentive to return. Physical destruction totals at least two hundred and fifty billion dollars, in a state the size of Washington. And it increases every day.

What is the moral obligation of the United States and our allies in light of the genocide of Bashar al-Assad? Will bombing a few of his planes get him to stop the murders and devastation?

Really, what should we do?