FINGER POINTING

Kremlin Blames U.S. for Loss of Palmyra

The Kremlin on Monday reacted to news of ISIS retaking Syria’s Palmyra by lashing out at the U.S., implying that a lack of cooperation on the part of Western allies led to the defeat. “We regret that we have yet to completely neutralize their offensive,” Kremlin spokesman Dmitry Peskov said. “We also regret that there still is a lack of coordinated action and real cooperation with other states—with the United States first and foremost—that do not want to cooperate, and this cooperation could allow us to avoid such attacks by terrorists,” he said. The Islamic State terror group recaptured the ancient city Sunday after losing it to Russian-backed Syrian forces nearly nine months ago. The development is seen as an embarrassing blow to both Russia and Syria, which celebrated the liberation with great fanfare months ago. Palmyra fell to the militants just as Syrian government forces took over eastern Aleppo over the weekend, a fact which Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov seemed to find suspicious. “It makes me think, and I hope I am wrong, that it is all orchestrated in order to give a respite to the bandits still in eastern Aleppo,” he said.