It’s all in the news!

“ISIS so weakened by Russian airstrikes and desertion it could be destroyed in HOURS!”

“Russian Jets hit 12 ISIS targets in Syria, causes panic among extremists!”

Russia has already cleared the air about the bombings saying  it is conducting military operations to wipe out ISIS and other extremist groups.

But is it the complete story? What urged Russia to attack ISIS all of a sudden?

Let’s go back to the root from where it all started!

Russia once used to be a superpower with proxies all around the globe but to this day, it  does not have a lot of reliable allies left and one of them is in real danger now. Syria is now lying on the face of many big fears; fear of anarchy, fear of populist uprisings, fear of Western meddling, fear of any authoritarian regime’s downfall, and fear of an ever-encroaching global chaos .Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad who is four years into the civil war which he began by mass-murdering peaceful protesters in 2011 has lost control over most of the country. And he needs desperate support.

In mid-September, Russia sent a few dozen military aircraft to Syria, as well as a couple hundred ground troops to guard them. Russia has had a small military presence in Syria for years. But this was something new: the start of an intervention. On Wednesday, Russia started bombing targets in Syria.

Russia hits the nail at the right spot!

Russian President’s Vladimir Putin’s call at the United Nations  for a global “anti-Hitler coalition” to fight terrorism and wipe out ISIS completely has definitely captured views of the world. Everybody is sympathetic with Russia and calls wiping out ISIS as an act of utter bravery and power. Putin’s boldness seems like a sign that President Obama’s passivity has allowed the Russian leader to poke its nose in Syrian matter particularly to the commons who are already frustrated that the US has refused to do more in Syria.

You are missing the bigger picture though!

His intervention in Syria definitely looks like a brave act of fighting against terrorism but this is most likely driven by fear; fear of losing Syria which is definitely going down.

In fact, its intervention is pretty clearly designed to help up Assad by bombing his enemies, namely non-ISIS rebel groups. Those groups are Assad’s biggest threat — but they’re also fighting ISIS. Some are extremists; others just want to fight Assad and some are backed by the US.

This makes US angry as well. The US believes Assad is the real driver of Syria’s war, and thus of ISIS’s strength there, so it opposes anything that bolsters him. Russia, on the other hand, wants to work with the US on finding a political resolution to the warThe US is so far rebuffing Putin’s invitation to form a grand coalition in Syria.

So on the surface, Russia is trying to stave off Assad’s defeat so as to retain one of its last remaining allies and a toehold of influence in the Middle East — to keep what is left of Russian global power. It doesn’t want to lose Syria, which is one of the last alliance they could have. Considering the fact that they have lost much support over years, losing this too would definitely affect their stature and condition.

What he’s seeking is not a brilliant, grand strategy of expanding Russian power, but rather a way to stave off these forces that so frighten him.

Citations:

http://www.vox.com/2015/9/24/9392543/russia-syria-putin

http://www.vox.com/2015/9/30/9419729/putin-syria-fear

 

 

 

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