SPECULATION OF THE ROLE OF RUSSIA IN THE LEVANT
16 November 2013
16 November 2013
There have been a lot of speculations recently about the role of Russia in the Levant, especially after the Syrian Chemical Weapons (CW) deal.
The issue has caused quite a bit of controversy ranging from supporters for the whole Russian intervention including that of the CW deal, to utter rejectionists who regard the deal as tantamount to Syrian surrender and a total Syrian sell-out to Russia.
In some instances, the differences escalated to a level that seems to be increasingly becoming divisive even amongst the ranks of the pro-Syrian camp. This can become a serious matter unless debated openly and rationally. At the moment, this issue seems to be ignored, perhaps in fear of creating divisions. The anti-Russian camp is perhaps feeling marginalized because those who do not support this view (who are by the way the majority) are not debating the matter. In an attempt to clear the air and bolstering solidarity, I suggest that we debate this matter and invite those who have different opinions to make their contributions.
There is no doubt that Putin is an aspiring world leader and that he sees that Russia has interests in Syria, but to regard the current Russian role as an act of treachery against Syria is totally and utterly ill-founded and there is no evidence to support. In fact, if anything, the evidence points exactly in the other direction.
To be brief and straight to the point, I will outline in dot point the reasons that make me adopt the “pro-Russian” side (if I can refer to it as such):
a. Russia is regaining and restoring its global role. Its first stand was in Georgia back in 2009.
b. Russia made it clear in the UNSC time and time again that it will veto any anti-Syrian resolution, and it did.
c. Russia made clear to NATO that attacking Syria without a UNSC resolution is a red line that will not be tolerated.
d. Russia has never put boots on the ground in foreign nations, not even in Vietnam. Not helping Syria directly is a Russian tradition.
e. The US thought that Russia was bluffing and launched 2 missiles heralding an all-out attack on Syria in early September. Russia thwarted the attack and destroyed one of the missiles, and hacked into the other one and had it diverted.
f. The Syrian CW’s were already an ageing liability.
g. The purpose of weapons CW’s included is protection. Syria’s CW’s performed without having to be fired. They served their role to the highest expectation.
h. The CW deal was a face-saving exercise for the USA and an attempt to find a political resolution, Russia’s and Syria’s way. It was a deal that America was forced to accept, not the other way around. Never before did the USA huff and puff about attacking a country to back off later until Syria. This is the greatest joint Russian Syrian victory ever, and those who do not see it as it is do not have a proper vision of global politics.
i. Russia and Syria want to go to Geneva II when war on the ground is fait accompli. Even Kerry said to Lavrov recently what is the point in going to Geneva after the Syrian Army scores more victories.
j. If Putin is a con man as his adversaries describe him, Assad is not a fool, neither is Nasrallah.
k. For Russia to step up the global ladder, it needed and found strong regional allies. It support for Syria is because Syria proved to be strong.
l. On the other hand, the US allies proved to be weak and worthless and America found itself having to justify to its own people its support for Al-Qaeda.
m. Even without the 2-missiles saga, that is still largely denied, America was very reluctant to strike Syria. It is a nation that is already bankrupt and engaged in many expensive wars.
n. The Anti-Syrian alliance is breaking up. The Emir of Qatar abdicated and his powerful man Hamad had to go with him. Egypt is out of the grip of the Muslim Brotherhood, Qatar and Turkey. Turkey is witnessing internal turmoil and is having second thoughts about its involvement in Syria. The USA knows it cannot strike Syria. Israel is disappointed that the US is having talks with Iran. It is only Bandar who is still trying to pull a trick out of a hat and hope for a miracle that gives him some bargaining edge in Geneva II. None of this would have happened if the Syrian Army didn’t have enough time to deal with the situation on the ground. Had Russia not vetoed the UNSC resolutions against Syria, history would have taken another course.
o. The US and its allies are in a total loss in Syria. They have lost the ground battle, they are divided, and they have lost their initiative and long-term policy. They simply do not know which way to go.
"Arabi Souri", in a recent article, argued that all of the above is a façade and that it would be impossible to see Saudi Arabia standing on its own without America. I agree with the second part of this statement. Saudi Arabia cannot stand up on its own and America has no allies left in the region except Israel which will not go into an all-out war with Syria to please Bandar.
"Syrian Girl Partisan" goes in her anti-Russian rhetoric to the extent of attacking the wisdom and intelligence of President Assad. This is improper, demoralizing and harmful. Again, Syrian Girl has been a very active pro-Syrian activist and she too has played a big role in spreading the truth about Syria. However, her stand on Russia and on President Assad is quite vicious and needless.
My call to Arabi, Syrian Girl and their anti-Russian camp is to have a debate about this subject if they wish. Thus far, this issue has not been handled properly. As a matter of fact, there has recently been a public display of discord among members.
Just because they do not seem to understand the changes in the geo-political order of the world and the rise of Russia (and the BRICS axis in general), some anti-Russian advocates have made some comments about those who support Russia’s role in Syria and branded them as being irrational and naïve. This has been going on for some time and I was hoping it would simply fizzle away, but it only got worse.
This is inappropriate to say the least and should not continue. Any rational discussion is something that we should welcome on this group and any other group provided that it sticks to rationality and refraining from throwing insults and making personal attacks.