"09/05/2009 Despite US diplomatic activity in Syria and overture to Iran indicating a shift in Washington’s foreign policy, the Obama administration has renewed economic sanctions against Damascus. "The president felt it was necessary," said State Department spokesman Robert Wood, referring to the renewal of the sanctions, which is required each year by Congress.....
It is early to determine how the renewal of sanctions is related to the results of Feltman and Shapiro’s recent visit to Damascus. The Obama administration needs time to assess the outcome of its diplomatic activity in Syria and therefore, a decision to renew sanctions could not have been founded on the most recent US-Syria talks. After all, Washington still needs to determine its road map in the region, particularly vis-à-vis normalizing ties with Damascus, based on the outcome of elections in Lebanon and Iran.
SYRIA SHRUGS OFF US SANCTION RENEWAL AS 'ROUTINE'
A Syrian official played down the importance of the sanctions renewal, telling AFP on condition of anonymity that the measure was routine. "The dialogue between Damascus and Washington is not over," the Syrian official added........"
The power of the Obama myth is amazing! Once the myth of "change" has taken hold, there is nothing to stop the "hoping" and "waiting".