WASHINGTON, (BM) – The US airstrikes last week in Syria, near the Iraqi border, continue to be the subject of in-depth analysis. Russia, Syria, and Iran have reacted sharply to the first attack by Joe Biden’s new US administration.
Unlike Tehran and Damascus, Moscow was more restrained in its comments. Russia has often fought side by side with Shiite militias in the area. Moscow has tried to protect the affected Iranian forces, recalling that they, along with Russian troops, are fighting to eliminate terrorists in that part of the Arab state.
Such a statement is a political blow to the American president. Thus, Moscow is trying to convince the world that if the United States wants to destroy terrorism, it must do so together with Russia. Otherwise, all we could interpret Washington’s actions as resolving Iran-US relations. The Kremlin believes that Washington’s airstrikes were more passive and geopolitical than the idea of countering terror.
Moscow did not miss the time for the notification from Washington. According to Russian President Vladimir Putin’s spokesman Dmitry Peskov, Russia did not know whether the Pentagon would carry out the strikes or not. Simultaneously, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said that the United States had notified Russia of the impending attacks, but in a short time – 4-5 minutes before the strikes.
However, what Moscow did not say in its comments has a louder response. Anna Borshchevskaya noted that Moscow had not criticized Washington for failing to seek advice from the current Iraqi government. “If Moscow were serious about fighting terrorism, supporting sovereignty, and promoting genuine multilateralism, it would have wanted more consultations with the Iraqi government on this issue. Instead, Moscow now worries that Iran’s deal negotiations are undermined“, says Anna Borshchevskaya in her article.
Moscow’s response, or rather the Kremlin’s silence on Iraq, could be to Russia’s detriment. The United States has received a signal that it is better to build a clear strategy toward Russia than to rely on Moscow to play a role in renewed diplomacy on Iran’s agenda.
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