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World Media Outlets Give Credit to Putin for Combating ISIS

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Originally appeared at German Economic News. Translated by Susan Neumann.

The international newspapers have been consistent in showing their respect for the Russian operation against the terrorist militia IS. Even the German media, which has mostly criticized Vladimir Putin, is showing some signs that it’s starting to reappraise its viewpoint.

"Magyar Nemzet" (Budapest):

«In a manner that is thoughtful, prudent; and at the same time, resolute, and without sparing any resources, we have to move into those strongholds and territories occupied by IS in Syria, Iraq, and Libya.  The amoeba-like terrorist militia must not be allowed to have even the smallest piece of backcountry (…) Europe must support only those players who have the potential to restore an acceptable statehood (for the affected areas). The idea that one can create a democracy with some extremist group, falsely described as "moderate," should be rejected flat out. That a useful partnership can only exist between the United States, who sponsors these groups, and their regional vassals, is an illusion that should be buried. Moreover, one must — and now please take a deep breath! — look to win Turkey, Iran, and Russia as partners.»

"Moskovsky Komsomolets" (Moscow):

«Already for two decades, the terror has practically been a part of everyday life. It has proven that it can change the course of history. It’s been clear for a long time, that it’s self-deceiving to claim that extremists are easy to defeat. Now the time has come to put an end to this fairy tale, and to seriously think about how the world can be better protected against this madness — without sacrificing one’s freedom. Even though there is an understandably huge temptation to dramatize losses and to treat every attack as a historic turning point: the fight against terrorism requires rationality above all else. »

«Novaya Gazeta» (Moscow):

«If it weren’t for the Paris tragedy, the authorities would probably still be leading us around by the nose. Now the situation has made it favorable to admit a terrorist attack, because no one associates the plane to crash with the actions of Russian forces in Syria and their consequences. Even in the context of the G20, the classification of Russia as a terror victim automatically makes it one of the western civilized countries and an ally among those who act as a united front against the new barbarism. Who will dare criticize our foreign policy if we’re fighting against the Islamic State? »

"Le Monde" (Paris):

«By cooperating with Russia against the Islamic State (IS), France is offered the best chance to effectively combat this enemy, which has now been clearly identified as a priority. (President) François Hollande has listened to the reason and the arguments of those who have pleaded for this change — and these are not just simply French admirers of Russian President Vladimir Putin. The fate of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, which has divided Russians and Westerners, will be the subject of this "grand coalition," should it ever materialize. The West should not sacrifice its principles in return for Russian support against (the terrorist militia) IS; principles which were used to justify its support for the Ukraine.»

"Nordwest-Zeitung" (Oldenburg):

French President Francois Hollande needs military assistance in Syria. For EU partners like the U.S., the readiness to assist has its limits. Russia, on the other hand, has already jumped fully-committed into Syria’s fiery cauldron. It’s only logical, therefore, that the general staffs in both Moscow and Paris are seeking closer contact with one another. It’s hopeful that other powers will now return to a Realpolitik [more pragmatic and less ideological politics,] because without Moscow, there will simply be no solutions for Syria. The "how" remains a question of negotiation and price. Vladimir Putin has no special devotion to Syrian President Assad. When in doubt, and if the price is right, he will let Assad fall.

"Sächsische Zeitung" (Dresden):

Vladimir Putin can rest assured that if he does his part in Syria, he will be released from isolation, Ukraine or no. Putin sympathizers in the West are already poised, waiting to clap. In the end, he will be credited for saving all of Western civilization, which only the choir of Putin-flatterers in the Kremlin would normally dare to do. However, this means Russia won’t negotiate over Assad.

"Stuttgarter Zeitung":

Russia seems willing to take on more risk. There’s increasing indication that the Kremlin is willing to send ground troops to Syria. That's both risky from a military standpoint, and politically dangerous. Regardless, when Putin decides to do this, then you can bet that it’s not to pull the chestnuts out of the fire for the West. When you compare the risks, the security of Assad as president isn’t a sufficient justification for sending pictures of coffins with fallen soldiers back to Russia.  If Putin does take on this risk, then he’ll demand something in return — an end to the sanctions. New ally France is among those European countries most open to this idea.

"Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung":

Over the past few days, many have petitioned to close ranks with one another, in an international fight against Islamist terrorism. Principally, this is not impossible. After all, citizens of many countries have become victims of this type of violence. This shared experience, however, is apparently not sufficient to go against certain geopolitical interests and political beliefs. France and Russia have indeed approached one another and have begun coordinating their military operations against the IS, but the dictator Assad still stands in the way of any military cooperation between the United States and Russia (...) For Syria, there can be no future as long as Assad is in power. There can also be no future for Syria, as long as the tumor of IS continues to grow there, and whose metastatic disease continues to spread towards Europe.

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