On September 30, Russia intervened in the Syrian Civil War. Russia claimed that the strikes were to attack the Islamic State extremists and terrorists to stop them from entering Russia, while some others expressed doubt about their true intention behind the move. The U.S. pointed out that Russia targeted rebel groups fighting the Syrian government instead of the IS.
Kremlin Chief of Staff Sergei Ivanov said, “Russia will use its air force, not ground troops, and strikes will target Islamic State to prevent terrorists from entering Russia.” Since thousands of people in Russia and in the former Soviet Union support the IS, they might return to their homeland and that can lead to acts of terrorism.
After gaining approval to use force abroad, Russia carried out the air attacks against IS targets in Syria on the 30th. Russia carried out 20 airstrikes over eight IS targets and completely destroyed them. It would seem that Russia conducted the military activity with the purpose of sending their troops abroad. The problem is that the announcement about the airstrikes and the results goes aginst the U.S. and Syrian rebels.
Though Russia announced that it sent troops abroad to destroy IS, it is more likely that Russia’s true target is not the IS but Syrian rebels; in other words, in order to protect the Assad regime Russia attacked Syrian rebel groups under the pretext of airstrikes against the IS.
The anti-American Assad regime is the last pro-Russian regime left in the Middle East. It is the only foothold Russia can make use of to stop American influence in the Middle East. If Russia loses the Assad regime, Russia may completely lose its influence on Syria. The two countries have been working closely together since they formed a military alliance in 1971. Russia, in particular, has been selling billions of dollars of weapons to the Syrian government.
Meanwhile, analysis reveals that as Russia intervened full-scale in the Syrian Civil War, it has shaped up to be a confrontation with the U.S. And there are opinions that say, as Russia has increased military assistance to Syria, it is oppressing the U.S. while at the same time trying to take the lead in diplomatic relationships with the U.S.
By Lee Seul (firstname.lastname@example.org)