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Geopolitics
30/05/2017
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06/11/2017

The Syrian crisis and the new international agenda

Marcelo Rech, special cover from London – 

The civil war in Syria is on for six years, but it seems to have left the great powers’ agendas, currently busy with containing North Korea. However, it is not only the crisis in the peninsula that “forces” this change of course in the global priorities. There is much more behind the redirection of the attentions.

Two years ago, Russia launched its military offensive in Syria, which is its strong ally. In the beginning, that strategy met resistances by those whose main and perhaps only objective was to take down the regime of Bashar al-Assad. Seen as a threat to Europe and the West as a whole, Russia produced, little by little, results in the stabilization of Syria and in the fight against terrorist organizations.

It is important to remember that, in several situations, the West financed these organizations and groups of mercenaries in order to do the dirty work in the downfall of regimes once imposed and that later “ought” to be deposed, as in the cases of Iraq and Libya, for example.

According to the geopolitics analyst Giampiero Venturi, “after two years of the Russian military operation in Syria, it got clear that its results were well succeeded, as much in political as in economical terms. Russia altered the tide of the conflict and now it is playing the main role in the resolution of the Syrian crisis”.

Moreover, Russia benefits from the mistakes made by the West regarding the geopolitical balance in the Middle East. Four years ago, Barack Obama foresaw that the fall of Assad was imminent. The Syrian leader, however, keeps stronger and stronger, and this unexpected twist is directly related to the Russian military involvement.

The scenery involving Syria also allows us to think about the effective combat to terrorism. Who are those really working in that direction and who are those only seeking, in the phenomenon, the justifications to defend their interests?

Venturi believes that Iran will regain international influence, though Israel is not ready to accept any role by Teheran, be it in the Syrian crisis, be it in the Middle East. Following this trend, Moscow will be the only one able to mediate a solution, since it maintains open dialog with the Iranian regime.

Also the French leader, Emmanuel Macron, considers fundamental the collaboration of the West with Russia in the search for a solution to the crisis in Syria. To the displeasure of many of his allies, he affirmed that “Russia is our partner. We have to work with it”. He said still that it is impossible to put an end to the conflict without the Russians. Macron also knows that Russia may be crucial in the resolution of the problems with Pyongyang.

Marcelo Rech is a journalist, director of InfoRel, specialist in International Relations, Strategies and Policies of Defense, Terrorism and Counterinsurgence and the Impact of Human Rights in Armed Conflicts.
E-mail: inforel@inforel.org.

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