The Obama Administration Rejects Russias Offer to Form a New Military Coalition vs. ISIS in Syria
Has it created another front in the new Cold War?
Nation contributing editor Stephen F. Cohen and John Batchelor continue their weekly discussions of the new US-Russian Cold War. Pointing to the torrent of American political and media denunciations of Russian President Putins increasing of Moscows longstanding military support of the Assad regime in Syria, along with Putins dramatic offer to join the US-led air war against ISIS in Syria, Cohen concludes that Washington seems to prefer an Islamic State takeover of Damascus to any cooperation with Putins Russia. This, Cohen argues, opens another front in the new Cold Waralong with the ones that have already unfolded in Ukraine and Europeand is further evidence of Washingtons inability to think rationally about American national security. Unless ISIS is stopped soon, and its military victories reversed, which requires Russias assistance, millions of refugees are likely to flood into Europe, giving further rise to right-wing nationalist parties already opposed to US influence in Europe and to NATO. If so, the vaunted transatlantic alliance may not survive this political transformation of European politics. Also discussed are the worsening US-Russian confrontation over Ukraine, which American commentators now insist is directly related to Putins policies in Syria; and the way Russia has welcomed perhaps 1 to 2 million refugees from the Ukrainian civil war in a generally humanitarian wayin contrast to the refugee crisis in Europe.