If the idea of a buffer zone fails and Israel decides to strike massively at pro-Iranian forces across Syria – potentially accompanied by a significant US military engagement – the Russian-Israeli relationship could quickly cool. Such a development would threaten Russian’s core interest in the region: to preserve the military and political successes achieved to date in Syria and in the Middle East more broadly.
Results for Tag: Syrian war
Indeed, after Bashar al-Assad took over from his father, al-Turk played a large role in the so-called Damascus Spring, a period of political debate and demands for democratic change in June 2000. In August 2001, al-Turk appeared on al-Jazeera calling for all political factions to unite. “What we need today is reconciliation, and [we] have to work for a new future, forgetting mistakes of the past. In the past, we had a problem with the dictator, and now that problem is over – the dictator is dead,” he said.
Trump’s policy is pushing Iran towards Russia. In order to preserve its position in the region, Iran knows that it needs international allies and backing. Russia, therefore, is an important international actor that can balance the US, which is backing Iran’s rivals in the region. According to Khamenei’s adviser, Ali Akbar Velayati, “Iran-Russia relations are strategic and will determine the future of the region.” Trump’s policy is only strengthening this view and hastening Iran’s shift towards Russia and the East in general.
The Syrian regime wanted to stay in power at all costs, whereas the opposition wanted to topple the regime with the help of foreign military and political support, and kept insisting that this was its aim, even after it was on the verge of losing the war. The opposing political positions remained too far apart for any real negotiations to be able to be successful. Apparently, there was not any mediating party that was able to induce either side to moderate its position so as to be able to reach a compromise. Both sides considered it to be a struggle for life or death with hardly any room for compromise. With the increase of the numbers of deadly victims, refugees and destruction, the room for compromise – if there had ever been any room for compromise in the first place – ceased to exist.
Yarmouk’s former residents do not seem to be a priority in Syria, where many questions regarding reconstruction and resolutions remain unanswered. In the meantime, refugees have been forced to leave the country or stay in Idlib, which is still controlled by the jihadist alliance Hay’at Tahrir al-Sham. The fate of Palestinian refugees in Syria continues to be unclear as the regime pursues its objective of regaining control of the entire country.