The administration of President Barack Obama has determined that US policy to overthrow Syrian President Bashar al-Assad was a “huge mistake,” an investigative journalist in Washington says.
“At least some people in the administration have woken up to the fact that it was an absolute mistake,” said Wayne Madsen, an author and columnist specializing in intelligence and international affairs.
US National Security Adviser Susan Rice played a major role in Washington’s failed policy in Syria, Madsen said during a phone interview with Press TV on Tuesday.
Publicly, the Obama administration says it still believes Assad must be ousted, but behind the scenes the White House is embracing a strategy that would leave the Syrian leader in place as the world unites against an immediate threat from the ISIL terrorist group, The Washington Times reported.
Analysts believe the shift in strategy was on display at the UN last week, when the US agreed to a Security Council resolution on the peace process that made no mention of Assad, in what was seen as the Obama administration’s surrender to Russian and Iranian demands that Syria’s president be allowed to stay in power for the foreseeable future.
“The calculation that the White House has made is that working with Assad is less bad than the alternative of going to war with Russia over Assad, or of sending in a large number of American troops to fight ISIL on the ground,” said Joshua Landis, who heads the Center for Middle East Studies at the University of Oklahoma.
Madsen said the White House has realized that efforts to oust President Assad are making the region less stable and increase the likelihood of a military confrontation with Russia.
“I think we are going to see a lot more realism now and the winner is Russian President [Vladimir] Putin…. And now we are basically having to cooperate with Russia in dealing with ISIS in Syria and in Iraq,” he said, using another name for the terror group.
Since the Syrian conflict started in 2011, the US and its allies have also been providing military and financial aid to militants fighting the Syrian government.
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