U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry on Tuesday accepted Russia's long-standing demand that President Bashar Assad's future be determined by his own people, as Washington and Moscow edged toward putting aside years of disagreement over how to end Syria's civil war.I should be pleased that they finally came around to my position. Better the devil you know in Assad, than the monster ISIS that should be shot in the head, chest and groin repeatedly...but....
"The United States and our partners are not seeking so-called regime change," Kerry told reporters in the Russian capital after meeting President Vladimir Putin. A major international conference on Syria would take place later this week in New York, Kerry announced.
Kerry reiterated the U.S. position that Assad, accused by the West of massive human rights violations and chemical weapons attacks, won't be able to steer Syria out of more than four years of conflict.
But after a day of discussions with Assad's key international backer, Kerry said the focus now is "not on our differences about what can or cannot be done immediately about Assad." Rather, it is on facilitating a peace process in which "Syrians will be making decisions for the future of Syria."
Why did it take them so long to get here?
As things stand now, it really has the visual of another Russian victory. It has the smell of defeat rather than an adjustment of policy.