The United States and its Arab allies have been hoping to pull Syria out of the fold of Iran and Islamic militant groups in the region.
Damascus so far appears unlikely to take such a dramatic step, but it does appear worried about Iran's reliability and the long-term impact of that country's postelection unrest. Also, its Lebanese ally Hezbollah suffered a setback when its coalition failed to win June parliament elections, beaten out by a pro-U.S. bloc.
Syrian President Bashar Assad has been expressing hopes for better ties with Washington for months. But the latest developments may make dialogue look even more attractive. HERE THIS WHOLE AP STORY