Fighting between government forces and army defectors has intensified in the outskirts of Damascus. The Syrian government sent a major deployment of troops to several suburbs and the defectors, who call themselves the Free Syrian Army, retreated.
Violence is increasing in Syria, with activists reporting multiple clashes in cities. The U.N. Security Council is meeting Friday to discuss a resolution on the conflict there. It's also likely to ask President Bashar Assad to step down.
One thing that's certain about the uprising against Syrian President Bashar Assad is that there is nothing romantic about it.
Unlike Egypt, there's no Tahrir Square filled with hundreds of thousands of people calling for democracy. Unlike Libya, there's no Mad Max warriors in the desert fighting a dictator with guns they've welded to the backs of their pickup trucks.
Instead, grim news seeps out piecemeal from unofficial sources. Most of the reports are little more than body counts, with most of the fatalities blamed on the Syrian security forces.
Veteran war correspondent Anthony Shadid spent much of the past decade in Baghdad covering the Iraq war, first for The Washington Post and then for The New York Times. Last December, Shadid left Baghdad for his home in Beirut, Lebanon, where he's been based for more than a decade.