The moral of this story is: don’t send Barack Obama to negotiate your operational modus vivendi with Russia in a combat zone.
On the first day of Russian air strikes in Syria, Russia surprised the U.S. by sending a general officer to the American embassy in Baghdad to issue a “demarche,” or a unilateral demand or statement of intent. The general – who is stationed with the new joint intelligence command center set up in Baghdad by Russia, Iran, Syria, and Iraq – said Russia would be conducting strikes, and he “requested” that U.S. forces remain clear of the Russian operating area. (See video.)
Pentagon officials point out that that’s not what anyone meant by proposing to coordinate with Russian forces in Syria. Continue reading “Russian strikes, Day 1: No ISIS targets; ‘demarche’ to U.S.: ‘Don’t fly here’”