US President Barack Obama chats with Russia's Vladimir Putin in Turkey in November 2015 [Kayhan Ozer/Reuters]
Leonid Bershidsky, Bloomberg: U.S. Is Letting Putin Win in Syria
Three days past the deadline set by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry for President Bashar al-Assad to being a political transition in Syria, fighting is raging in Aleppo, the last urban stronghold of the rebels opposed to the regime. The U.S., however, is not coming to their rescue, because the wrong kind of rebels are involved in the battle. In terms of helping to end the war, the U.S. inaction may be worse than the scenario touted by Donald Trump -- an alliance with Russia to defeat Islamic State -- but it's more politically acceptable.
The group formerly known as Jabhat al-Nusra attempted to rebrand itself as Fatah al-Sham at the end of July, ostensibly distancing itself from its mother organization, al-Qaeda. It now appears to be the driving force behind a rebel attempt to break the Syrian army's siege. The desperate attack -- supplies have been running out in eastern Aleppo -- appears to have fizzled: With Russian air support, the regime forces and their Iranian and Lebanese allies are pushing back and holding the siege, which cuts the rebels off from Turkey.
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WNU Editor: I do not think there are going to be any winners from the Syrian conflict. There is no appetite in the U.S. to get more actively involved in the war with the exception of targeting the Islamic State, and I do know that in the Kremlin there is no expectation of a victory at the end of the road for Syria .... just a hope that Syrian President Assad will preserve what he has and that some form of reconciliation will happen after that. What everyone is in agreement with is that the repercussions of the Syrian war .... when it is finally over .... is going to last for generations, and the cost to rebuild will be in the hundreds of billions. And as to when will this war end .... like the Lebanese civil war of the 1980s .... animosities and hostilities are probably going to present for decades.