By Andrew Lee Butters

U.S. officials ought not to have been surprised by the smiling solidarity between Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and Iranian President Mahmoud Amadinejad in Damascus on Tuesday — but they may, nonetheless, have been disappointed. Sure, Iran is Syria’s closest ally, and the two countries form the core of what’s sometimes called the “Rejectionist Crescent” — the arc of countries and groups from Tehran to Gaza that stand against American and Israeli power — but the Obama Administration hopes to change that.

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