If defeating the Islamic State really were the desired outcome [of Obama's policy in Iraq and Syria], the pieces are in place for an advance on Aleppo, Raqqa, and Mosul by the Syrian Army, the Kurds, and the Iraqi Army, backed by massive American and Russian air support.This excerpt actually makes reference to the interests of the American people, which are in stark contrast to the mysterious, illogical, and unannounced purpose behind "U.S." foreign policy in Iraq and Syria. Assad is by far the best alternative for Syria yet the U.S. approach is one for which "success" would be measured, in part, by the takeover of Syria by:
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. . . It’s past time that U.S. foreign policy served the interests of Americans, not those of neocons and theocratic Sheikhs.
- al Nusra, or whatever the elusive al Qaida is called these days, and/or
- a fanciful bunch of "moderate" Syrian "rebels" with unknown plans for a Syria without Assad and a demonstrated willingness to cooperate with the two former groups.
However, the American people have no interest whatsoever in effecting a takeover of a sovereign country by our mortal enemies -- who are absolute animals.
A united front with Russia, Syria, and Iraq is the only strategy that will serve our true interests, one of which is disengaging militarily from where we're not needed and where we are doing immense damage, not least of all to ourselves.
 "Kerry in Moscow: What is more important for America: Defeating ISIS or overthrowing Assad?" By Edward Lozansky and Jim Jatras, Washington Times, 7/19/16 (emphasis added).
H/t: Russia Insider.