Referring to his meeting with Putin early this week, Obama told a press conference yesterday that he told Putin that it is true that the two countries and the entire world have a common interest in destroying the dreaded Islamic State militant group (ISIS).
"But what was very clear, and regardless of what Putin said, was that he doesn't distinguish between ISIS and a moderate Sunni opposition that wants to see Assad go," he said.
"From their (Russian) perspective, they're all terrorists, and that's a recipe for disaster. And it's one that I reject," Obama said referring to the reports that the Russian military is targeting non-Islamic State forces too inside Syria.
"The top line message that I want everybody to understand is, we are going to continue to go after ISIS. We are going to continue to reach out to a moderate opposition. We reject
Russia's theory that everybody opposed to Assad is a terrorist," he said.
He said that Russia has now become stronger because of its recent military action in Syria.

"So Putin's actions have been successful only insofar as it's boosted his poll ratings inside of Russia, which may be why the beltway is so impressed, because that tends to be the measure of success. Of course it's easier to do when you have a state-controlled media," the President added.


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