Voices from Russia

Sunday, 21 May 2017

Syrian Army Calls US Bluff: Advance Towards Iraq Border Continues

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The USA is desperate to create a pretext for direct military intervention in Syria… but Syrian forces and their allies won’t take the bait. The US military presence in Syria is plainly illegal under international law, and arguably even unconstitutional. There are loopholes that allow for limited US military operations without a formal declaration of war, but the president can’t initiate a war without congressional approval. However, the attack on pro-government forces in southeast Syria on Thursday was just that… an act of war. The USA didn’t intend to deter the Syrian Arab Army from advancing; it knows that its proxy forces and mercenaries are unable to halt the Syrian forces and its allies as they push towards the border. In order to prevent Syria from reclaiming its own territory and securing its border, the USA would need to launch a direct military intervention. Of course, Washington would need a pretext for doing so. Do you see where this is going?

Thursday’s attack was a provocation… nothing more. Washington is eager to manufacture a pretext to increase its presence in Syria further. Therefore, it’s no surprise that the Syrian command and its allies are playing their cards in a calm and calculated way. A military response to Thursday’s attack would’ve been exactly what Washington wanted and needed. It’s hard to say what will come next, but a formation of Syrian troops is approximately 15 kilometres from al-Tanaf, keeping in mind that Thursday’s strike took place about 20 kilometres away; in other words, the provocation failed to deter the SAA and its allies from advancing. Not every loud statement is a true statement, but almost every silent move is a valid one. More will clarify in the coming days; Foreign Minister S V Lavrov made it clear that the US strike against the Syrian Arab Army was a “violation of Syria’s sovereignty”. That may sound like a wimpy response… but don’t be so sure. Lavrov’s statement is a reflection of Russian military policy. A Russian Su-30 was spotted over As-Suwayda Governorate; most likely, it was covering the Syrian troops advancing towards al-Tanaf from any foolish hostility.

21 May 2017

Walel al-Hussaini

Russian Insider

http://russia-insider.com/en/politics/syrian-army-calls-us-bluff-advance-towards-iraq-border-continues/ri19895

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