Monday, September 9, 2013

From Russia With Love: Putin Hands Obama a Get Out of Jail Free Card

Don't look now, but Vladimir Putin may have just saved Barack Obama's bacon. If reports are accurate, Russia has apparently bit on the apple John Kerry offered up to avoid a possible military strike on Syria.

The apple in question appeared to be a gaffe by Kerry who was asked if there was anything Assad could do to prevent a strike on his country. “Sure, he could turn over every single bit of his chemical weapons to the international community in the next week — turn it over, all of it, without delay and allow the full and total accounting.”

While the State Department immediately started "walking back" Kerry's statement, the Russian foreign ministry wasted no time responding favorably to it. “We don’t know whether Syria will agree with this, but if the establishment of international control over chemical weapons in the country will prevent attacks, then we will immediately begin work with Damascus.  And we call on the Syrian leadership to not only agree to setting the chemical weapons storage sites under international control, but also to their subsequent destruction.”

But wait, it gets better. Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Moallem released his own statement shortly thereafter. "Syria welcomes the Russian proposal out of concern for the lives of the Syrian people, the security of our country and because it believes in the wisdom of the Russian leadership that seeks to avert American aggression against our people."

While it's still too early to tell how serious Syria is about actually complying with Russia and the United States, this is at least a start in the right direction. If this pans out and a strike is averted, Obama is going to owe Vlad a shitload of Vodka the next time they meet.

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To be continued...


Links: http://dish.andrewsullivan.com/2013/09/09/kerry-gaffes-the-russians-blink/
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/09/09/russia-syria-chemical-weapons-international-control_n_3893951.html

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