Higher crude prices on the back of the Syrian conflict are beginning to creep into the investor psyche. The U.S. deciding to back the rebels while Russia sits firmly in the Assad camp has raised the prospect of a proxy war just like during the cold war. Much of the rally in energy prices has come on concerns about a wider spill over into the Middle East oil production arena. While these concerns rise from time to time and then fall away, one day they may not. Higher energy prices as the U.S. and most developed economies struggle to growth is going to hurt. Though the U.S. is less dependent than it was on the ME supply, China is becoming a bigger consumer and will feel the pain. Expect flows to the ususal safe havens like the Swiss franc and gold if Syria looks like becoming a bigger mess than it is.