While President Barack Obama pouts over the disrespectful treatment he’s endured at the hands of Russian leader Vladimir Putin, the Pentagon noted that Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel met with Russia’s Defense Minister Sergei Shoygo in Washington, D.C., on Friday.
At the same time, Secretary of State John Kerry and his counterpart, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, joined the discussion which was dubbed the “Two-Plus-Two Talks.”
At the start of the meeting, Secretary Hagel reportedly noted that it’s the major powers’ responsibility to seek mutual interests on pressing issues facing the United States, Russia, and the world.
“Secretary Hagel and Minister Shoygu agreed that it is time to build a more robust agenda for military cooperation and directed their staffs to put together a plan for more regular and frequent engagement,” according to the Pentagon’s press secretary, George Little.
Secretary Hagel told his Russian counterpart that the U.S. Defense Department desires a partnership with the Russian in order to overcome bumps in the road that impede deeper cooperation. The Americans and Russians by must seek “enabling agreements that will allow for improved information sharing, exchanges, joint exercises, and training.”
Secretary Hagel discussed the United States and the North American Treaty Organization’s approach to promoting continued security and stability in Afghanistan once the U.S. troops depart in 2014.
The U.S. Defense and State secretary’s also exchanged views with the Russian ministers on the Syrian civil war that continues to kill thousands of civilians and has led to reports of the use of chemical weapons.
While U.S. officials have claimed Bashar al-Assad’s regime is using chemical weapons against the rebels and those Syrians suspected of supporting the rebellion, the Russian government has alleged that it is the rebels — led by Islamist groups such as al-Qaeda in Iraq — who are using chemical weapons.
According to June 3 Examiner news story, a former police intelligence analyst said that despite the Obama Administration, lawmakers such as Sen. John McCain, and many U.S. news organizations ignoring the “trespasses of the Islamist-infiltrated Syrian rebel militia,” those who are closely following events unfolding in Syria are concerned over the use of WMD by the rebels.
In the Examiner news story it was reported that:
Some American counterterrorism analysts believe President Barack Obama’s interest in capitalizing on the fear of chemical weapons is to encourage foreign intervention as occurred in Libya and Egypt. The goal is toppling the administration of President Bashar al-Assad and the Ba’ath Party by any means necessary.
Over the course of the weekend, the SANA news agency reported that among the terrorists slain by the Assad forces were Khaled Othman, the leader of the so-called “Andan Oqla Battalion” terrorist group, Abdul-Min’em Dyab, the leader of the so-called “al-Mout Battalion” terrorist group, Abdul-Hadi Meznazi, the leader of the so-called “al-Ansar and al-Sharia ” terrorist group which is affiliated to Jabhet al-Nusra, Abdul-Rahman Barakat, the leader of the so-called “al-Tasleeh battalion” terrorist group, Mohammad al-Hara, Mohammad Sweif, Mustafa Ziad, Tareq Rahmoun and Khaled Ja’moor.
On Monday, May 31, Turkish security forces also reported that they discovered a cylinder containing sarin gas when searching the homes of Syrian militants from the al-Qaeda-linked Al-Nusra Front who were previously detained, the Turkish media reported. The gas was reportedly going to be used in a bomb.