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Russia-U.S.A. Agreement To Hold
New Syrian Conference
Appears To Be a Strategic Shift

May 10, 2013 (EIRNS)—The announcement on May 7 by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, that they will pull together a new international conference on Syria, in hopes of finding a solution to the Syria crisis through political dialogue between the Assad government and the opposition, likely reflects an urgent effort to bring the world back from the brink of regional, if not general, war.

The recent Israeli bombing raids on Syria, followed by indications from the Obama Administration that it would escalate its support for the Syria opposition, possibly by setting up a no-fly zone, had put the region on a hair trigger.

  • The first monkey-wrench thrown into that escalation was the announcement by a member of the Special UN Commission on Syria, Carla Del Ponte, that the Commission's preliminary finding shows that the opposition, not the regime, is likely the party which has used chemical weapons.

  • The second is now the joint U.S.-Russian alliance, which is a significant shift, in that it apparently drops the removal of Assad as a precondition for a political settlement.

In the aftermath of the announcement, there has been a flurry of efforts to derail it, including by British Prime Minister David Cameron. While Lavrov said the Syrian government had agreed to participate, no such statement is yet to come forth from the opposition.

Sources in the U.S. intelligence community had told EIR months ago that there would be a serious effort by a war-avoidance faction in the United States to revive the strategic partnership with Russia, citing the upcoming visit to Moscow by Gen. Martin Dempsey as one key intervention. Dempsey will be making that trip to Moscow in early June.