Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Fighting for Peace: Russian Forces in Syria 'Do More Than Just Fight Jihadists'

Syrian President Bashar Assad says the situation in his country has dramatically improved from the military perspective, with terrorist groups on the retreat. Military observer Alexander Perendzhiev says the main guarantee to ensure a lasting peace in Syria is finding political stability, and that Russian forces are actively engaged on that front.

Speaking to India's WION television broadcaster over the weekend, the Syrian president explained that situation in his country "has improved dramatically…because the terrorist groups, mainly ISIS and al-Nusra and like-minded groups in Syria who are Wahhabi terrorist extremist groups, are retreating…the area under their control has been shrinking."

https://sputniknews.com/middleeast/201706061054375424-russian-forces-syria-purpose/


4 comments:

Bob said...

Can the Russians find a replacement for Assad? Or is Syria completely bereft of talent?

Tom Hickey said...

"The Russians" have already said that they are committed to preserving Syrian sovereignty and territorial integrity rather than maintaining Assad in power. They have also said that the democratic process requires allowing Syrians to choose their leader rather than having a leader imposed by external forces.

The first step involves getting rid of jihadis, the sponsors of whom include the US, UK, Germany, France, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, and Qatar and then holding free and fair elections in Syria in which the opposition can compete with Assad if he chooses to run.

The likelihood of Assad winning a free and fair elections seems high.

But the actual issue is not Assad. The Western powers always personalize the conflict but their actual objective is to remove the Baathist from power. How did that work out in Iraq? They were the only people capable of governing, and when they were removed, chaos soon descended on Iraq even with an America occupation force in place. Why expect that Syria would be different? The result would another Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya in the already volatile MENA, and millions of people would be plunged into darkness with no light at the end of the tunnel.

But Israel would have block the Shiite crescent, Saudi Arabia would have stymied Iran, and the West would have a pipeline route from the ME to Europe, bypassing Russia. This is what this debacle is really about.

Bob said...

It depends on what concessions could be obtained by replacing Assad.

The first step involves getting rid of jihadis, the sponsors of whom include the US, UK, Germany, France, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, and Qata

I wouldn't count on completing this step. Didn't happen in Iraq, yet they went ahead and held elections.

But the actual issue is not Assad. The Western powers always personalize the conflict but their actual objective is to remove the Baathist from power. How did that work out in Iraq?

A civil war, followed by elections, with a nominal democratic government established. Continued strife and mistrust resulted in de facto partition of the country.

Will Syria be different? I believe that is unlikely. The Baathist method of rule involves repression, which inevitably leads to periodic uprisings. The borders as they exist do not reflect the ethnic makeup of the population.

What would be the most expedient solution/resolution for Russia?

But Israel would have block the Shiite crescent, Saudi Arabia would have stymied Iran, and the West would have a pipeline route from the ME to Europe, bypassing Russia. This is what this debacle is really about.

Europe doesn't seem to have a problem purchasing Russian gas. Why go through all this on their behalf?

Bob said...

ISIL: Target Russia
http://www.aljazeera.com/programmes/specialseries/2017/05/isil-target-russia-170522095304580.html

A curious lack of drones where ISIL fighters are gathering in the mountains of northern Afghanistan.