"I see no progress that [Kerry] has made whatsoever other than attending meetings in Vienna and other areas. The real success was with Iraqi forces seizing Ramadi, and hopefully they'll be holding the area," he added.
Vallely praised Russia's efforts to destroy Daesh's oil smuggling infrastructure. The terrorist group is believed to have made approximately $2 million daily from selling petroleum products stolen in Iraq and Syria. Moscow has been targeting Daesh oil trucks and refineries since mid-November. The militants are said to be losing some $1.5 million per day due to these efforts.
"The Russians are doing more bombing of the tankers in eastern Syria, trying to shut down the oil revenues of [Daesh] forces. And I see that as a very positive move," he observed.
Vallely's comments came in response to a blog post on the State Department website, which credited the US with "bringing peace, security in Syria" by providing humanitarian aid to the Syrian people and pushing for a UN Security Council resolution aimed at resolving the months-long conflict. The post made no mention of Russia's contribution to the fight against Daesh.
The retired major general maintains that the ceasefire will be a major step forward.
"Let's have a truce and a ceasefire with some of the rebel organizations as well as the bombing on civilian areas. And I think this is the biggest thing that the Russians and the Syrian government can move forward to, but they've got to keep a 'full-court press on' — what we call in American basketball, if I may, to destroy and neutralize all of [Daesh] in eastern Syria and northern Iraq as well," he noted.
Vallely pointed out that Washington should work with Moscow to find a solution to the Syrian conflict.
"We have got to work with Russians and try to bring in reputable, respected members of some of the opposition — what we call the sectarian — what we've defined as moderate, which nobody seems to be able to put their finger on who those people are. But there are people opposed to Assad; they are available over there to meet with," he added.