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The Editors

How to Begin to End the Syrian War

All sides should recognize the partition already in place.
War-weary Syrians.

War-weary Syrians.

Photographer: Muslum Etgu/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

Europe's refugee crisis has refocused attention on the horrors of the war in Syria and should rekindle diplomatic efforts to end it. But any such attempt needs to reckon with a stark reality: The partition of Syria is already happening.

This is an outcome no side would have chosen when pro-democracy protesters took to Syria's streets in 2011. But at this point, the countries involved should use Syria's partition as a basis to reconcile their competing interests and break the international deadlock that feeds the war.