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Putin forced the US to change policy in Syria

Kerry Finally Drops Absurd Demand for Immediate Ouster of Syrian President Assad, as Europe Demands Urgent Policy Shift; Kerry Says US Rejects “Long-Term Presence of Assad,” Meaning That Short to Medium-Term Presence Would Be Acceptable; Russian Defense Minister Shoigu and Pentagon Chief Ashton Carter Agree on “Mechanisms for Deconfliction” Between Russian and US Forces Fighting ISIS; Crypto-Warmonger Bernie Sanders Still Refuses to Condemn Saudi-Backed Genocide in Yemen, Where 7 Million Civilians Face Death by Starvation and Bombing; Sanders Campaign Website Evades Issue of War or Peace; Independent Election Monitors Find Russian Regional Election “Mainly Fair”; New Yorkers Prepare to Welcome Putin the Peacemaker at United Nations

| Washington D. C. (États-Unis)
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Philipp Hammond & John Kerry

Here is the face-saving formula used by US Secretary of State Kerry in London today to signal that the United States is finally jettisoning the absurd and utopian demand that Syrian President Assad’s immediate removal from power be a precondition for negotiating a political settlement for Syria. Kerry stated: “Our focus remains on destroying ISIL and also on a political settlement with respect to Syria, which we believe cannot be achieved with the long-term presence of Assad,” Mr. Kerry said. “But we’re looking for ways in which to try to find a common ground. Clearly, if you’re going to have a political settlement, which we’ve always argued is the best and only way to resolve Syria, you need to have conversations with people, and you need to find a common ground.” which we’ve always argued is the best and only way to resolve Syria, you need to have conversations with people, and you need to find a common ground."

If Assad must depart in the long term, this implies that his short-term and medium-term presence is feasible. This opens the space needed for serious diplomacy and negotiations, which Europe is demanding to stop the Syrian civil war, the driving force behind the refugee crisis. It is expected that a number of European nations will soon end economic sanctions against Syria, re-open their shuttered embassies, and begin cooperating with the legal Assad government.

One key background element for this evident Russian-US convergence comes from veteran reporter Robert Parry, who says a source told him of some preconcert between Putin and Obama:

“Privately, I’m told, Obama agreed to — and may have even encouraged — Putin’s increased support for the Assad regime, realizing it’s the only real hope of averting a Sunni-extremist victory. But publicly Obama senses that he can’t endorse this rational move. Thus, Obama, who has become practiced at speaking out of multiple sides of his mouth, joined in bashing Russia – sharing that stage with the usual suspects, including The New York Times’ editorial page.”

This suggests that Obama’s public posturing in regard to Putin may represent a charade or dog-and-pony show. The same may apply to Obama’s repeated refusals to meet with Putin on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly in just over a week’s time. Obama may be using this issue as a way to dupe the warmonger Republican opposition.

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