Daniel Politi, Slate: Moscow, Washington Say They Will Join Forces To Fight Jihadists in Syria
There was cautious optimism on Saturday about the temporary halt in the Syria war that was brokered by the United States and Russia. But there was also lots of skepticism as air strikes hours after the breakthrough deal was announced sparked doubts about whether any agreement could really hold. To be fair, the nationwide truce isn’t supposed to begin until sundown on Monday. Still, the fact that what everyone believes to have been Russian planes bombed a marketplace in northwestern Syria hours after the landmark U.S.-Russia deal was reached didn’t seem to be the biggest symbol of goodwill.
Even Secretary of State John Kerry, after 13 hours of negotiations, appeared to recognize that there are no guarantees any ceasefire deal will actually be followed. He was sure to emphasize though that, if everyone does what they’re supposed to, it could mark a turning point in the conflict that has raged for more than five years.
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Update: U.S., Russia seal Syria cease-fire, new military partnership (AP).
WNU editor: Because there is no trust .... U.S.-Russian Syria Deal Lacks a Key Element: Trust (Leonid Bershidsky, Bloomberg) .... forming a military partnership will probably be next to impossible.