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Obama's ISIS, Russia Strategy in Question at G-7

06-07-2015
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Russia and ISIS topped the agenda as the leaders of the industrialized democracies gathered in Germany this past weekend for the G-7 summit.

While sanctions against Russia will be maintained, some leaders may be starting to question America's foreign policy strategy.

Russia missed the summit for the second year in a row. That's because the leaders of the world's top industrialzed democracies kicked Moscow out of their annual meeting after it annexed Crimea from Ukraine.

Russia was further isolated when the G-7 nations imposed sanctions against the country last year because of Crimea and its armed support of pro-Russian rebels fighting in Ukraine.

Meeting over a beer Sunday with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, host of this year's summit, President Barack Obama revealed what was on his mind: "standing up to Russian aggression in Ukraine."

Both Obama and the German chancellor agreed sanctions against Russia should not be lifted until President Vladimir Putin fully implements terms of the peace accord reached in Minsk last February.

Putin said the West has nothing to fear from Russia, insisting it's actions in Crimea, Ukraine, and elsewhere are simply defensive, not offensive actions.

Some European officials agree, and they may move to weaken the sanctions against Russia with or without the United States and Germany.

Also of concern to the G-7 leaders is the war against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria.

The general in charge of effort to recapture Ramadi and other areas in Anbar province said the Iraqi military has secured the defense lines leading to Baghdad.

Still, some of the European leaders don't think Obama's strategy is working.

With ISIS making gains in both Iraq and Syria--and Russia's Putin flexing his military muscle in Ukraine and around the world--Obama's foreign policy decisions are being called into question, not only by critics in the United States, but by some of America's closest allies.

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