Russia is making a big comeback in the Middle East. Previously, the country has been under great scrutiny for its efforts in Syria and consequently its ceasefire advocacy. According to analysts, Russia is engaged in a calculated intervention in Syria – its limited operation was able to shakeup political systems.
According to National Interest, Obama administration seemed more focused on what’s happening in Asia resulting loosening grip on the Middle East. Likewise, the report also cited Obama’s reluctance to engage fully in the Syrian conflict for fear of repeating “mistakes” done in Iraq and Afghanistan. Obama stood differently from Putin as he was hesitant in coordinating full military intervention, which the Russian supposedly proved otherwise.
“But Putin has just proved that a military intervention in the Middle East does not have to lead to a quagmire. In fact, far from fulfilling Obama’s pessimistic predictions, Russia’s Syrian operation may help drive forward a political settlement,” the report said.
Putin refused to participate in a long drawn out and costly war and effectively created a deadlock. Involved parties were forced to become part of talks in Geneva. When Russia pulled out from the war, it was able to change the situation. While peace is not yet achievable, given the number of conflicting parties and nations involved across the region, Russia has notable achievements in the region already.
“Even without a political settlement, Putin’s strategic achievements are notable. Russia’s military operation saved its imperiled ally, Assad, from defeat and secured its airbase in Latakia and its naval presence there and in Tartus,” the report added.
This is not the only thing that’s dividing Russia and US as both countries continue to seemingly “compete” on the military front. A recent encounter between the countries also made headlines as unarmed Russian fighter jets flew over the USS Donald Cook along the Baltic Sea. The European Command said that the Cook “encountered multiple, aggressive flight maneuvers by Russian aircraft that were performed within close proximity of the ship.”
“We have deep concerns about the unsafe and unprofessional Russian flight maneuvers,” CNN quoted the European Command.