While Donald trump is trying to solve with your team the question of possible withdrawal of us troops from Syria, other middle Eastern players prepared to take the vacant place. Yes, without the States there will be created a temporary geopolitical vacuum that will need to be filled with something. Capabilities, actually a little. In the first place that comes to mind is, of course, Russia.
Our country has long been involved in the conflict and so mired in it that is unlikely in the coming years we will be able to help me out. Assad is everything, and through him we are restoring the long-lost influence throughout the middle East, not only in the SAR. While this works for a variety of ways Moscow has managed to achieve certain successes in neighboring countries. For example, is now heavily dependent on Russia is Iran, and in Syria, his behavior is largely dependent on the decisions of the Kremlin. This was clearly demonstrated by recent events in the sharp decline of the Persian presence in the Arab country under the pretext of placing With-300 a number of Iranian bases were simply disbanded.
In Iraq we also have some successes — local Kurds declared the establishment of an independent Iraqi Kurdistan, are willing to accept a Russian company and is ready to cooperate with them in almost any conditions. Yes, and the Baghdad, no matter what, has proposed Russian officials to launch a joint campaign against terrorism in Iraq. An invitation nobody used it, probably for fear of severe American reaction. Now, the time has already been lost, but in economic terms to Russia all roads are open.
The second player is able to expand its influence due to the departure of the Americans is Turkey. Moreover, she just claim to Northern Syria, now controlled by the United States. Difficult to say exactly what is the main purpose of Erdogan. It seems to be obvious — he wants to spare himself and his Turkish supporters against the threat from quite a radical Kurdish groups. Talking about the PKK and the people’s protection Units. Those and others like them are not treated, do so or otherwise pose a threat to the current Turkish state.
But there are strong suspicions that Mr. Erdogan is obsessed with the Syria order to grab a piece of it or two. Ankara is already attached Afrin, partially Idlib. Why not continue with Managem and other parts of Aleppo? Moreover, once it was all the territories of the Ottoman Empire.
In General, without the United States, Turkish-Russian relations can go in a crisis — it is likely that the parties agree on a particular issue, figuring out who gets what. Even more recently, our Minister of foreign Affairs Lavrov said that the best option to resolve all the problems will be the transfer of Northern Syria under the control of Damascus. At a press conference at the end of last year he said: “We are convinced that the best and only, by and large true solution is the transfer of these territories under the control of the Syrian government, the Syrian armed forces, Syrian administration”.
A good plan, and maybe it really is the solution to all problems, but it is unlikely that the Kurds that the Turks will go for it. The first did not want to lose power, and the second don’t want to miss the opportunity to get the most power. For the Kurds surrender territories is tantamount to a denial from the millennial dreams of their own state, which they never had, but now they are closer to your goal. And the Turks finally managed to overcome the dozens of years of humiliating obedience to the Western allies in the European Union and the United States. A country with such a history could not too long to be a docile lamb, especially for those whose ancestors once shook the mere mention of the name of a Turkish Sultan. Here Erdogan and spit on the EU, all its values and engaged in independent politics. And yet it all turns out. So, being on the wave of success, leaving Syria would be kind of silly. What awaits us in this situation?
Australian expert Richard Frank believes that the demilitarization of Syria is good, but in the current circumstances, the withdrawal of the armed forces of the United States will cause a worsening of the conflict. And the greatest burden will fall not just on Russia and Turkey.
— It is important to understand that the U.S. role is not limited to the war with terrorist groups. In terms of Syria, it is important to a political settlement, and help countries with so much experience as the United States, it is usually useful. And all this time, the United States has generally worked successfully. For example, over the years, there were no serious clashes between the regime and Democratic forces. In Idlib managed to achieve stability without the involvement of the United States, because many opposition groups to some extent dependent on Washington and that is after agreeing with US they agreed to join the created Turkey Association Iglinsky forces. But most importantly, the Northern territory controlled by the Democratic forces in security. This is not the reliable security, because Turkey regularly encroaches on these areas, but these clashes have not escalated into major conflict due to the American presence.
“SP”: — And if the US will finally go, as promised?
— If the US goes, would threaten not only the democratic opposition but also all of Syria, and indeed the region. The problem is that Turkey will certainly begin a military operation against the opposition groups that it considers terrorists. Russia, being loyal to the Kurds, first try diplomatically to stop the bloodshed, but will not interfere. Then, when does not remain other choice, Russia and Iran to supply their forces in the still unoccupied by the Turkish army regions of the North and East. Over time, this will lead to fierce dispute on possession of Aleppo, Raqqa and, of course, Idlib, which is likely to be a disputed territory between Turkey and Syria. And it will be a very dangerous situation. Hardly anyone thinks about it now, but why would someone risk of war between Russia and Turkey? And the risks that Turkey or Russia will start a conflict, will be high, although it is hard to imagine it. So now the US presence is still needed, and we hope that Donald trump will show prudence.
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