``Carnage in Jisr al-Shughour has taken the Syrian crisis to a new level, even as Bashar al-Assad's regime descends to new depths. Three risks now stand out. The first and most obvious is vicious regime retaliation against residents of the north-western town where 120 army and security personnel are said to have been killed. The second is the very real spectre of civil war raised by this escalation. Third, and most dangerous for Israel and the west, are growing, linked attempts by the regime and its ally Iran to externalise the conflict.''

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