From what we know about the U.S.’s ceasefire agreement with Russia, other than that it’s already collapsed, is that it’s a way for the United States to speak to the Assad regime in order to provide certain conditions that would put a stop to the violence, if only for a bit, and in order to provide humanitarian aid to the people there.
This is because Russia and Syria have been allies for a long time, even more so under Vladimir Putin, who has paved the way for a fourth term as president, according to The Hindustan Times. And while humanitarian aid is very important, the other part of the ceasefire agreement was that it was a way to better manage some form of coordinated effort for all three powers to better target the real “bad guys,” being ISIS and the al-Nusra Front.
Over the last couple of months, while the U.S.-led coalition forces have been making gains in the neighboring Iraq against ISIS, the issues in Syria are far more complicated and confusing, even more so since Turkey joined the fight when they started attacking Turkish forces who had already proven themselves to be the best fighting group to take on ISIS.
While time is as good as any to enforce a ceasefire agreement, there are reports of a potential “threat” rising along the border with Israel — as reported by Reuters, which could be a foreshadowing of how much more complicated the battle might become.
— Department of State (@StateDept) September 12, 2016
But U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry is more qualified to know how difficult the ceasefire was to manage, and he also knows first had that he had no choice but to cut it with Russia.
Syrian President Bashar al-Assad already said in the past before Russia intervened that his government did engage with the U.S. directly, and so Russia is naturally the only route of diplomacy.
The recent reports of the U.S. violating the current ceasefire agreement, as reported by the Inquisitr, were enough to indicate that the ceasefire was not going to hold, and that article shows where both the Syrian and Russian governments are pointing fingers, even accusing the U.S. of creating ISIS, which has always been the argument made against the Western forces who are trying to topple the Assad regime.
The threat to the ceasefire agreement made through Russia was clear from the beginning, where Syrian state media shows the government bulldozing the main road to clear the way for humanitarian aid and saying they’ve left the area, with rebel forces saying that it wasn’t true, pointing out Syrian positions still in place.
To this, it was the White House Press Secretary who pinned that ordeal on Russia during a press conference last Monday.
“… it’s an indication that the Russians were either unable or unwilling to use their influence with the Assad regime to get them to live up to the Cessation of Hostilities. For reasons that I guess you’d have to ask the Russians, they now are making a renewed commitment to doing so. I suspect that part of it stems from their concern about getting sucked into this conflict over the long term — something that the United States warned of since we saw this military intervention by Russia last year.”
The U.S makes no secret of getting rid of Assad, and even with the recent agreement, John Kerry has talked about building space for a transition of government as being a goal. However, there is every reason to believe that Russia will not support the toppling of Assad.
Josh Earnest’s assumption that Russia would not want to be sucked into the conflict for the long term is wrong. Russia has no problems being there as long as they have to, and under the mobilization of Euro-Asian powers to push the United States out, they will drag it out, as an article by the Inquisitr indicated.
The mentioned Inquisitr report about the violation of the ceasefire agreement says that Russia was given the heads-up before the U.S. were going to attack a group they believed were extremist militants and before they were told that they might have been attacking Syrian troops.
This incident that has resulted in mass casualties — a good enough amount to easily be in violation of the ceasefire agreement. It would have been enough for the Syrian government to declare war on the U.S. if Russia were not there to settle the matter.
— Al Arabiya English (@AlArabiya_Eng) September 16, 2016
Rather than discuss that fallout, however, one has to wonder if Russia knew that by somehow making the U.S. violate the ceasefire agreement days after making it and during an election year where the transition of power to the next U.S. president would determine the future of Russia’s role in the Middle East might have been something both the Assad regime and the Russians could have coordinated.
There is no doubt that Russia will go as far as they have to in order to increase the stakes there, as it isn’t as if Bashar al-Assad is above sacrificing his own troops to stay in power.
Two articles by the Inquisitr also point to what the situation in Syria might look like under a Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump presidency. Either way, however, Russia has no plans on leaving the area or letting the Assad regime fall. Various ceasefire agreements have already been violated in the past, and Russia knows this.
With so many parties involved on the ground and in the air, it is Russia who has the power to manipulate the ceasefire agreement in a rare opportunity to drag the world’s greatest power, the U.S., through the mud.
[Featured Image by Grigory Dukor/AP Images]