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It is hard to have a conversation about Syria without speaking or hearing the words "how depressing".Yes, the Syrian policy odyssey of the Obama administration was almost entirely subterranean.Is it not logical, therefore, that Russia will support power sharing in Syria sufficient to enable the flow of reconstruction funding into the country?It is true that Russian officials are calling on the world to rebuild Syria. Is there evidence that Russia can compel Assad to empower a unity government in Damascus and permit empowered local governance throughout Syria? It seems clear enough that a criminal operation like the Assad regime cannot simultaneously share power and exist. Several months ago, at the outset of the Trump administration, this writer suggested that Russia's intentions with respect to Assad's future would be clarified by developments in eastern Syria: that if Moscow decided militarily to try to restore the regime in areas vacated by or liberated from Daesh (ISIS), it should be taken as a clear signal of Russia's intention to go all the way with Bashar. Well, the results are in: Russia is clearing the way militarily for Iranian-led foreign fighters and regime forces to ford the Euphrates River and move east. Yes, Syrians are desperately tired of the mayhem inflicted upon them by a malevolent government, that government's external accomplices, and by Islamist extremists inspired and sustained by the regime and its foreign backers.
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