Russian involvement in Syrian crisis

Discussion in 'West Asia & Africa' started by LETHALFORCE, Sep 2, 2015.

  1. LETHALFORCE

    LETHALFORCE Moderator Moderator

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2009
    Messages:
    20,553
    Likes Received:
    6,565
    http://freebeacon.com/national-security/russia-deploying-air-force-contingent-to-syria/

    JERUSALEM—Russia has begun to deploy an air force contingent to Syria in order to undertake air attacks against the Islamic State (IS, also known as ISIS or ISIL) and other Islamic groups battling the regime of President Bashar al-Assad, according to the Israeli news site, Ynet.

    Citing western diplomatic sources, Ynet reported Tuesday that an advance Russian party has already arrived in Syria and will be followed in the coming weeks by thousands of military personnel, including members of an “aerial protection division.” This presumably is a force to protect the air contingent, which is to include fighter jets and attack helicopters, from ground attack. The Russians will reportedly be making use of an existing Syrian air force base in the Damascus area.

    The report was written by the news site’s military correspondent, Alex Fishman, who has a reputation for reliability.

    The United States and allies began air strikes against IS a year ago. Last month American warplanes, which had been launching from aircraft carriers in the Persian Gulf and from Gulf states, began operating from an airbase in Turkey. Should the report of direct Russian intervention prove true, coordination between the Russians and Americans would be mandatory. Until now, wrote Fishman, there has been no reaction from Washington to the Russian move although the Obama administration is well aware of it.

    “The Russians do not harbor offensive intentions towards Israel or other sovereign states in the area,” he wrote. “Their main stated goal is batting ISIS and preserving Assad’s rule.” Moscow fears the spread of the Islamic State’s influence in the former Islamic Soviet Republics unless it is stopped in the Middle East. For Iran too, halting the group’s advance is its most important immediate aim—important enough to permit cooperation with the ‘Big Satan”, Washington.

    Although Israel has not undertaken direct strikes against the Assad regime aimed at unseating it, it has periodically launched air strikes against missiles and other advanced armaments being transshipped through Syria by Iran to Hezbollah in Lebanon. This, theoretically at least, raises the possibility of Russian and Israeli aircraft coming into contact unless an accommodation between them is reached beforehand. During the 1973 Yom Kippur War, a number of Soviet lives were lost during Israeli raids in Damascus and Syrian ports. The two countries did not have diplomatic relations at the time. There are at present sound diplomatic relations between them.

    The Russian air effort will be focused on Islamic targets in Syria. It is not clear whether the aircraft will operate over Iraq. The reported visit to Moscow last month of Iranian General Qasem Soleimani, commander of the al-Quds force, which operates outside Iranian territory, is believed to have included talks about Russian air intervention in Syria.

    Informal coordination is also underway between the United States and Iran over the battle against IS in Iraq. Washington regards Iran as a central player in the struggle against the radical Islamic group.

    The Ynet report said the Russians will also operate against “rebel-aligned targets” within Syria. Although all nations active in Syria and Iraq oppose IS, many support rebel groups, including the United States and other Western and Arab states. This would be a potentially explosive issue if not headed off quickly.

    While Iran and Russia are interested in preserving Assad in place, each for its own reasons, most nations attacking IS are opposed to the Damascus regime. It is seen as responsible for the Syrian civil war, which has led to more than 200,000 deaths and the uprooting of millions. Throughout this period, the Russians have sent a vessel to Syria every week carrying military supplies and Tehran has been airlifting military supplies to Damascus airport. Arab media reports that the Russians are planning to double their shipments. However, with the Syrian army losing key ground to rebel forces and losing personnel through desertion and in battle it is questionable if these efforts will succeed in propping up the regime.
     
  2.  
  3. LETHALFORCE

    LETHALFORCE Moderator Moderator

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2009
    Messages:
    20,553
    Likes Received:
    6,565
  4. LETHALFORCE

    LETHALFORCE Moderator Moderator

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2009
    Messages:
    20,553
    Likes Received:
    6,565
  5. LETHALFORCE

    LETHALFORCE Moderator Moderator

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2009
    Messages:
    20,553
    Likes Received:
    6,565
    maomao likes this.
  6. LETHALFORCE

    LETHALFORCE Moderator Moderator

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2009
    Messages:
    20,553
    Likes Received:
    6,565
  7. LETHALFORCE

    LETHALFORCE Moderator Moderator

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2009
    Messages:
    20,553
    Likes Received:
    6,565
  8. Sylex21

    Sylex21 Regular Member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2014
    Messages:
    439
    Likes Received:
    326
    Location:
    USA
    Wow, thought it was a hoax at first. This is absolutely amazing and will be a massive game changer. The USA/Turkey/anyone else can forget about toppling Assad. Personally I'm sick of this "force democracy on the Middle East" bs. Better to have secular dictators that generally keep the peace, than chaos like ISIS going on.
     
    djuksoni, parijataka and raja696 like this.
  9. pmaitra

    pmaitra Moderator Moderator

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2009
    Messages:
    31,663
    Likes Received:
    17,163
    Location:
    EST, USA
    This is a good development. It is about time someone put a check on the Israelis secretly helping out the ISIS each time the Syrians come close to defeating them in a battle. I hope part of this deployment also includes S-300 missiles operated by Russians. Israeli planes will be within range the moment they take off from Tel-Aviv.
     
  10. LETHALFORCE

    LETHALFORCE Moderator Moderator

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2009
    Messages:
    20,553
    Likes Received:
    6,565
  11. pmaitra

    pmaitra Moderator Moderator

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2009
    Messages:
    31,663
    Likes Received:
    17,163
    Location:
    EST, USA
    From the link, 4 pertinent points:
    --------------------
    In recent weeks, the Russians have taken four military steps related to Syria:

    1. On Aug. 18, six of Russia’s advanced MIG-31 Foxhound interceptor aircraft landed at the Syrian Air Force’s Mezze Airbase, which is the military section of Damascus international airport. After the fighters landed, they were immediately followed by giant Russian Antonov AN-124 Condor cargo planes carrying 1,000 of Russia’s 9M133 Kornet anti-tank missiles.

    The advanced jets are intended to serve as air support for the Russian units that arrive in Syria.

    2. Before the Russian planes landed in Damascus, Moscow reached an agreement with Washington for the removal of NATO’s Patriot missile batteries from Turkey. The removal was carried out gradually during the month of August, thus preventing the possibility that NATO Patriot missiles could hit Russian fighters carrying out operations in Syrian airspace.

    3. During the last week of August, a large number of Russian troops, mostly logistical teams whose job is to lay the groundwork for the arrival of the combat units, arrived in Syria. The troops were seen in Damascus and in Jablah district of Lattakia province, where the Russian forces are building a military base.

    4. Our intelligence sources also report that Moscow has started to supply Damascus with satellite imagery of the ground situation on the different fronts.
    --------------------
     
  12. LETHALFORCE

    LETHALFORCE Moderator Moderator

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2009
    Messages:
    20,553
    Likes Received:
    6,565
    Russia will not let asad's syria fall. This is the only real ally Russia has in the Mediterranean .
     
  13. LETHALFORCE

    LETHALFORCE Moderator Moderator

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2009
    Messages:
    20,553
    Likes Received:
    6,565
  14. pmaitra

    pmaitra Moderator Moderator

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2009
    Messages:
    31,663
    Likes Received:
    17,163
    Location:
    EST, USA
    jackprince and LETHALFORCE like this.
  15. pmaitra

    pmaitra Moderator Moderator

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2009
    Messages:
    31,663
    Likes Received:
    17,163
    Location:
    EST, USA
    Contrary to Rumors Russia Won’t Fight in Syria
    Russians are far too cautious to embark on a military adventure like that

    [​IMG]
    The Saker | Russia Insider

    [​IMG]
    Who wants a quagmire?

    This article originally appeared at The Vineyard of the Saker

    The Internet is flooded with rumors about a Russian military intervention in Syria. It all began with an article by Thierry Meyssan in Voltaire Net and now this rumor made it to Zero Hedge. Finally, the Israeli website Ynet also joined the rumor mill. Here are the two main assertions made by these sources:

    1. Russia has just created a Russo-Syrian Commission and has begun supplying weapons, sharing intelligence, and sending advisors. All of this is more or less coordinated with the White House.
    2. Russia has begun its military intervention in Syria, deploying an aerial contingent to a permanent Syrian base, in order to launch attacks against ISIS and Islamist rebels; US stays silent.
    What is interesting in these rumors is that they appear to come from two very different sources Meyssan gets his information from Syrian sources while Ynet quotes “western diplomatic sources”.

    Finally, I will readily admit that there could be a Russian rationale for an intervention in Syria: the Russian security establishment is united in the belief that the US plan is to eventually turn Daesh (aka ‘ISIS’) against Russia and this one of the reasons it is so important to assist the Syrians: it is better to fight Daesh in Syria than it is to fight it in southern Russia.

    So the rumor about a Russian intervention is at least credible. And yet, I don’t buy it.

    I will gladly admit that I cannot prove a negative and that I have absolutely no privileged access to any special Russian sources. All I can offer are my conjectures and nothing more, and there is a good chance that I might be wrong. But having said that, here is my personal reaction to this rumor.

    First, I don’t believe that there is much public support in Russia for a foreign military intervention. It is one thing to be ready to defend your own country or your own citizens when the latter are directly attacked (as in 08.08.08) and quite another to intervene 1,200km away from your national border.

    And we are not talking about just anywhere 1,200km away from Russia, but very much inside US controlled territory: the US controls Turkey via NATO and the entire Middle-East (except for Iran) via CENTCOM.

    Do you remember when the Russian paratroopers moved from Bosnia to Kosovo and took over the Pristina Airport? Russia was unable to resupply them because the US basically controlled the entire airspace between Russia and Serbia.

    The situation is similar today in the sense that the resupply and support of a Russian contingent in Syria would largely depend on the US goodwill.

    Yes, the Russian could also use their Navy to resupply and support any Russian contingent through the Mediterranean, but that could be very time consuming and difficult.

    I have said it many times on this blog: the Russian military is not designed to operate further than roughly 1,000km from the Russian border and a military intervention in Syria, while possible, would definitely stretch this self-imposed limit.

    Second, while the first part of the rumor (sending advisors, sharing intelligence and supplying weapons) does not represent a major Russian commitment, the second part of the rumor would represent a major political and military commitment from Russia.

    Russia still has a very painful and, I would say, even traumatic recollection of what a “limited military intervention” looks like. After all, this is exactly how the Soviet military intervention in Afghanistan was presented to the Russian public, as a “limited military intervention” to protect a friendly country from subversion, foreign intervention and destabilization. How is that different from what is happening today in Syria?

    “Limited military intervention” have a strong tendency to lead to an open-ended escalation, and the Russians are quite aware of this. I strongly believe that the Russian withdrawal from Georgia after 08.08.08 is largely explained by this awareness: the Russians could have easily invaded all of Georgia (the Georgian military had basically ceased to exist and there was nothing standing between Russian paratroopers and Tbilissi) in 24 hours or less, and yet they chose to stop and turn back.

    And when the Russians recognized the independence of Abkhazia and South Ossetia they still withdrew most of their forces from these two republics and worked hard to put most of the responsibility for the defense of these two countries on the local people.

    The same approached was used in Chechnia were Russia has a powerful and capable Federal military contingent, but where 99% of the responsibility for security is placed on local, Chechen, forces.

    In purely military terms, much of what these rumors claim make no sense to me. For example, Meyssan and Ynet both mention the deployment of MiG-31s to Syria. The problem with this is that the MiG-31 is a pure interceptor designed to protect a huge volume of Russian airspace from a US Air Force attack involving low flying cruise missiles and strategic bombers. As a counter-insurgency weapon the MiG-31 is simply useless.

    True, the six MiG-31s rumored to be sent to Syria would provide a formidable deterrent against any US, NATO, Turkish or Israeli aircraft entering the Syrian air space, but this is also why I would expect these countries to protest such a delivery with utmost outrage and determination rather than “more or less” coordinate it or “remain silent”. It would be much more logical to send SU-24s and SU-25s to Syria if the goal is to support Syrian army operations against Daesh. But these rumors do not mention these aircraft.

    Finally, Ynet speaks of a major military operation. Here is a quite from the article:

    “A Russian expeditionary force has already arrived in Syria and set up camp in an Assad-controlled airbase.

    The base is said to be in area surrounding Damascus, and will serve, for all intents and purposes, as a Russian forward operating base.

    In the coming weeks thousands of Russian military personnel are set to touch down in Syria, including advisors, instructors, logistics personnel, technical personnel, members of the aerial protection division, and the pilots who will operate the aircraft.”

    A quick look at the recent news out of Syria will tell you that Daesh is already operating in the suburbs of Damascus. So where exactly would Russia deploy “thousands” of military personnel “in an area surrounding Damascus”? This makes no sense at all.

    Ever since the crisis in Syria began I have been repeating that the Russians are not, repeat, not coming!! (see here, here and here) and, so far, the Russians never showed up. Of course, it is possible that this time around they might.

    Again, the first part of the rumor about sending advisors, sharing intelligence and delivering weapons makes more sense to me.

    But the notion of Russians flying MiG-31s out of Damascus to somehow change the course of the civil war makes no sense to me at all. Neither does the idea of “thousands” of Russians being deployed to Syria.

    In fact, last time I checked, the Russians were evacuating their citizen from this country, not sending more in.

    Again, everything is possible and I cannot prove a negative. Maybe this time around the Kremlin decided that a major military effort against Daesh was needed. And maybe the US does not object to it. But the logical distance between “possible” and “likely” is a very long one and, at least at this point in time and with the information I have, I don’t see any reasons not to dismiss these rumors as wishful thinking.
     
    maomao likes this.
  16. Sylex21

    Sylex21 Regular Member

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2014
    Messages:
    439
    Likes Received:
    326
    Location:
    USA
    Awww, I had a feeling it was too good to be true. *swallows sadness*
     
  17. jackprince

    jackprince Turning into a frog Senior Member

    Joined:
    Mar 30, 2009
    Messages:
    2,537
    Likes Received:
    2,681
    Location:
    Seema Andhra
    I have some points in counter argument.

    1. The situation in Afghanistan and Syria is completely different. USSR made a terrible mistake by staging coup by killing president Hafizullah Amin and taking complete control, which riled up almost all sections of Afghans, and that caused the demise. In Syria, Assad still has a huge support base in common Syrians and fear of ISIS is another thing working in favour of Assad. So, in this case the 'limited intervention' can stay limited.

    2. During Kosovo war and in the Pristina incident, Russians and NATO were working toward the same goal, at least on the cover. Also, RuAF was not involved in the ops, neither did it has any friendly Govt. in the power which also has a sizable working airforce, completely unlike Syria. Further, I doubt if Russia wants to resupply its forces by air, USA would run interdiction. Also, Russia has a very friendly and resourceful Iran very close to Syria to resupply its troops, rather than bring the supply all the way from Russia.

    3. The Georgia incident was in 2008, when Putin was still trying to cozy up with Western powers and getting generally disgruntled. At that time Russia still was not ready to antagonise west, and rather was hopeful of becoming a partner. So, it was no wonder Russia did not finish what it had started. Also, possible NATO intervention would have been likely if Russia suddenly was going to gobble up a whole nation, and got direct access to EU.

    4. The Russian, particularly RuAF and its AA systems' presence, IMO is more to discourage the NATO and Israel from disrupting Assad's troops' operations than actually fighting in the civil war. I doubt either NATO or Israel, would try to antagonise Russia by shooting at a RuAF fighter and starting an international incident which they cannot defend. Russian presence on Syrian soil is totally legitimate and by invitation, when NATO and Israel are acting more like Bandits.
     
    parijataka and LETHALFORCE like this.
  18. Illusive

    Illusive Senior Member Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jun 20, 2010
    Messages:
    2,335
    Likes Received:
    1,418
    Is Russia deploying this in Syria?
     
  19. amoy

    amoy Senior Member Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2010
    Messages:
    5,524
    Likes Received:
    1,548
    Rather than direct Russian air intervention what about escalating support for Iran and her proxies Hezbollah in turn against ISIS, FSA and probably Israel behind the scenes? Anyway the boots on the ground r necessary for fighting in the streets.

    The Assad regime seems very impotent up to now. The seesaw battles dragging on and on only results in more bloodshed and refugees.

    ~Tapa talks: Orange is the new black.~
     
  20. gadeshi

    gadeshi Senior Member Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2013
    Messages:
    5,530
    Likes Received:
    3,631
    Location:
    Kharkiv/Ukraine
    No, it makes no sense to do this.
    Syria is having augmented with T-72B3, BMPT-72 and BTR-82A for ground forces ans different SAMs for air defence.
     
  21. SajeevJino

    SajeevJino Long walk Elite Member

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2012
    Messages:
    5,657
    Likes Received:
    3,032
    Location:
    Inside a Cage
    There is some information that Many Russians recently deployed in Syria to help Assad to fight against ISIS

    No idea are they just technical support staffs ..or combat troops
     

Share This Page