"Putin doesn't understand what he climbed»

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Russia's participation in the war from the Shiite and Sunni sects can lead to disastrous consequences

President of the Institute of Eastern partnership in Jerusalem Rabbi Avraham Shmulevich in their recent publications indicate that the Syrian operation Kremlin is bluffing, but the bluff for which Russia will pay a big price. In an interview with Radio Svoboda Abraham Shmulevich said that Putin doesn't understand what disaster might cause his conflict with much of the Muslim world.

Is a bit exaggerated, I can say that in Syria there is now the Russian armed forces. What there will be able to provide a few percent of the fighting that is required now. According to different estimates in Syria are in the order of 30 combat aircraft, even some helicopters. It was a message that two aircraft had returned to Russia. 30 planes is nothing. Only Americans in Syria during the war flew more than 7 thousand sorties, plus there are other coalition forces — Australia, Canada, Israel, and operates there, in addition, there are regular Syrian army, which is also quite good. You can say that about 20-30 thousand martial air strikes was during the Syrian war. Then there are the possibilities of these 30 Russian aircraft is nothing. As for the army, but now Russia has confirmed officially that about one and a half thousand people there. The Syrian army, according to various estimates, together with those troops, which are fighting on its side (Hizbullah, the Shia of Iraq) is on the order of 250 thousand people, plus there is an unspecified number of Iranian regular forces (the guardians of the Islamic revolution, mostly) is also a few thousand people. Plus militia, which operates on an irregular basis, up to Afghanistan. Assad's forces have already lost 80 per cent of the order. And here are the forces that oppose them, which should deal Russia. IGIL, with whom, however, Russia does not fight: Russian general staff gave the order of 70 thousand fighters. The maximum assessment of expert community, is 200 thousand. Plus "Džabhat an-Nusra, free Syrian army, plus other forces, those forces have to deal with Russia, it's about 200-300 thousand people. It is clear that the 1,500 Russian soldiers is absolutely nothing. That is actually the presence of Russian forces in Syria. Materially affect the situation they cannot because of its significance. So all the talk that now dot the Russian press, that the militants are fleeing in fear IGIL are simply propaganda, absolutely based on nothing.

-Not yet, but Russia may strengthen its grouping?

Can be anything. Maybe Martians will arrive and will intervene on the side of Putin — that's roughly the same percentage of probability. To participate in the Syrian war seriously (it is not a guaranteed result of participation), Russian ground contingent must be by the most conservative estimates, somewhere on the order of 40 thousands of ground forces and a minimum of 200 aircraft. In order to ensure the functioning of such troops, Russia needs to create at least four airbase, ammunition dumps and so on, that is, to transfer a large number of different goods. If we take the Americans during "Desert Storm", then there was the order of 5-6 million tons delivered. On the assessment of military expert Colonel Sivkova, to ensure hostilities within a month on the very minimum of Russia would transfer 800 thousand tons of goods order in Syria is the tremendous amount of. Americans "Desert Storm" was prepared, threw all the goods within six months, and they have no problems with logistics was not, Turkey was next and u.s. military bases were on hand. As all these goods to move Russia — imagine. Again, even according to Russian experts, Russia has even no enough transport vessels, especially now that the war is already underway and relations with all the surrounding countries are corrupted. Turkey has already closed its airspace, Greece, Bulgaria closed airspace, only Iraq. That is, until Syria can only fly over the territory of Iraq, too, if it comes to a serious war, succumb to American pressure and will close its airspace. Even if that doesn't happen, the diversion of so many troops and so many goods takes time, at least several months, and a large number of vehicles. While we do not see this, no training. So talk about a massive Russia in the war in Syria from the realm of fiction.

-So, you think it's all bluff. But what is this bluff needed?

Is a good question. In order for us to answer it, we must first answer the question of how we regulate Mister Putin. From the history of dictatorships we know that dictators are very often lose touch with reality and engage in adventures, to which they are not ready. This we have seen in various examples in Latin America. Classic Hitler and Mussolini, with whom Putin has long been compared likewise finished. Therefore it cannot be excluded that Putin is absolutely inadequate, and he really believes that it is possible to suppress the names of Syria. The presence of several Russian aircraft and several Russian Marines Muslims run away in fear, victory will be assured by Russian caps. So it was in the history of other dictatorships in the history of Russia, suffice it to recall the initial period of the second world war. The first option, which cannot be ruled out that Putin really believes that you can get involved in this war and to win effortlessly. We are mindful of the Chechen war, as the then Defense Minister Grachev was going to take Chechnya for two hours one tank Regiment. Take already for more than 20 years.

— But it's still ultimately took.

Is a controversial issue. Some believe that, as a result of Chechnya took Russia. In any case, if the operation continues in Syria more than 25 years and will cost the same as cost Russia the operation in Chechnya, I think Putin even until the middle of this operation does not finish. But then again, Chechnya is not Syria, it is absolutely other conditions. This option cannot be ruled out that they got involved in a war, not knowing where they go and what do I need to provide the simplest possible hostilities. But Putin just bluffing and what is happening in Syria is a smokescreen to distract attention and Russian society, and perhaps the world community from any other action. But in any case, the facts show that the Russian forces currently in Syria is not enough for any significant influence on the course of the fighting.

— If you say that Putin is trying to thus divert attention from something else, the first thing that comes to mind is Donbass.

Is absolutely right. The only logical solution to this puzzle that Putin is going to use this smokescreen for actions in Ukraine. We know that project in Ukraine almost defeated, more precisely, his initial strategy on how to go to Kiev, capture the "Novorossiju", Odessa and so forth, was defeated. Putin was forced to abandon those plans. We see that now there is not even the collapse of the project "new Russia" and the draft Lugandona, people's republics. The boundaries overlap, appear, physically removed or arrested most intransigent militants. Enclosed Minsk agreement on which Putin could not arming militants, especially keep any fighting Russian forces. But, on the other hand, within two years of Russian propaganda day and night the Russian citizens about Ukrainian junta and so on. Explain this feint ears to the public will be difficult. Now consumers did not persuade the Russian propaganda, they may well need to digest any rubbish, which delivers tv, but there is a vocal minority, which fought in the Donbass, which partially armed, tried to taste blood. These people already believe Putin a traitor, a man who rents «Novorossiju» Kyiv, they need to give some kind of bait. It is possible that this hysteria that fostered now in Russia over the war in Syria, is designed to divert the attention of this part of the Russian society from the actual defeat Putin in Ukraine. The more the State Duma deputies have already been statements that need those fighters, "volunteers," as they are called, who fought in the Donbass, transported to Syria. It would be a very good option, because it is necessary to get rid of these people, let them there and real.

-It is already happening: some groups, who fought in the DNI, now transferred to Syria.

Is absolutely right. This fact speaks in favor of the hypothesis that we have just discussed. All the more so because such a step is actually really beneficial to Putin. Because it fundamentally Minsk agreement profitable. What is the main problem with Ukraine, Putin why he started this whole adventure? He mortally scared of the Ukrainian revolution in exactly the same way as he was scared of the first Square. Because if Ukrainians will be able to build a Western-style democracy, when the people of influence on decision-making affects the Government, the level of corruption complies with at least ûžnoevropejskomu, and the standard of living is similar to Russia's, then it would be a fatal verdict Putin's regime, his dictatorship will fall, because Ukraine is connected with Russia. A Russian Everyman asks: If the Ukrainians were able to, why do we need Putin? All that he made in Ukraine, had the first goal exactly neutralizing the effects of the Ukrainian revolution. The second objective is to restore the "Russian world", the restoration of the Russian Empire, and so forth, but that's the goal, from which he can refuse. But let the victory of the democratic revolution in Kiev, Putin cannot in any case. The inclusion of Donbass in conditions dictated by agreements, at least puts an end to Ukraine's entry into NATO, the EU is already can be seen as a victory for Putin, he may be satisfied with this decision. Therefore, this option is beneficial is the least he can accept. Therefore, all that is happening now in Syria, just a smokescreen for the deposit of Donbass, it seems the most likely scenario. It is known that man proposes, but God disposes. The question is how Putin will be able to implement this scenario. It seems to me that neither he nor those strategists who planned this, simply do not understand the consequences, which has already caused the presence of military forces on Syrian territory. The consequences can be just as fatal as the effects of the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan.

You wrote that Russia vvâzalas′ war in Syria, not understanding the processes taking place in the East. Russia has been involved in the conflict on the side of the Sunnis and Shiites of Shiites. The first consequence we are already seeing the sharp deterioration is relations with Turkey and Saudi Arabia. What's next, what price Russia may pay for this adventure?

In fact, Putin's regime is indeed a very great foreign policy achievement, which absolutely no one said the achievement is really great: he was able to isolate the Islamic resistance in Russia from the Muslim world abroad. At the beginning of the Chechen war, the same Saudi Arabia and the entire Muslim world sympathized with and helped Chechen rebels. I remember their neighbors in Hebron, who sat outdoors, watching television, there was Chechen fighters, and they said: Behold, we see what is written in the Quran, as people in green bandages will descend from the mountains and destroy the infidels. Then there was the colossal financial support — including support for volunteers. Putin's diplomacy managed to completely cut off the Caucasian resistance from any support of the Muslim world, in addition to the fairly marginal organizations like Al-Qaida, and that this was a symbolic support. Now that was a great achievement. The enemy of the Muslim world, Putin has turned to his friend and ally. World of Islam forgot all his crimes in Afghanistan and Chechnya. This, of course, very strongly contributed to the sustainability of the Putin regime.

Now, just as the invasion of Ukraine taken downwind efforts Putin at the European diplomatic theater, invasion of Syria in a blink destroyed the painstaking work of Russian diplomacy, Russian secret services and Putin has turned once again into the enemy of powerful forces that are operating now in the Muslim East. In Russia there is simply now specialists nor Islam, nor on the Middle East. The level of the Russian expert community, including the segment that advises the Kremlin, is simply the level of panoptikuma. There can be counted on the fingers of people who really understand what's going on. They are convinced that the war in Syria is exactly the same war that was in the days of Leonid Brezhnev that have Socialist secular regime fighting for its existence. In fact, everything has changed radically, war with Assad is quite another. It is a war that goes in the Islamic world over 1300 years old, this is the biggest conflict that exists in the Muslim war Wednesday Islamic Apocalypse war between Shiites and Sunnis, two fierce currents of Islam.

Assad belongs to alavitam, it is the Shiite sect, which under the banner of Arab socialism was a leading force in Syria. Assad's side are fighting now almost all the combined forces of the Shiite world is Iran, that Iraqi Shiites are Arabs, Shiite Muslims from southern Lebanon, Hezbollah is even Shiites from Afghanistan. That is all that can be employed, is involved, plus the southern part of the Arabian Peninsula there are Iranian-backed Shiites, not quite pure Shiite, but nonetheless. This war began during the reign of Saddam Hussein broke out with renewed vigor after his overthrow, is now completely crystallized. Russia, not aware that fits on the side of Shiites against Sunnis, she becomes the enemy of all the Sunni world in this global counteraction. Because the IGIL, with whom Russia is not actually at war, an organization that prevents all, it prevents more moderate Sunni forces, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, because they split a unified Sunni front. If it were not for the IGILa, the Sunnis made a more integral, but this coordination exists. In the Sunni world, too, have different currents, struggling between a variety of traditional malls, the same with the famous Turkey rehabilitation project the grandeur of the Ottoman Empire. We remember that the Ottoman Empire was a Caliphate. On the other hand, is Saudi Arabia. They are not the same, but nevertheless, they unite against the common enemy.

And contrasting himself to the power of the Sunni world (it's not even what happened in Afghanistan, Afghanistan still local opposition to the aggression of the infidels in particular is not the most important point for the Muslim world) Putin enters the global vnutrimusul′manskuû war on the side of one of the parties. Neither the Russian nor the Russian military experts just don't realize what they got. We already see, as you correctly said, quite harsh statements. Saudi Arabia stated that starting to supply the forces, which Russian Aviation bombed the Sunni forces, Syria, systems, ground-to-air and anti-tank systems. I think there are quite a lot of actions that simply were not mentioned in the press. And get out of this situation, Putin will be extremely difficult, there are not enough even to withdraw. He destroyed not just stirred, and destroyed such a hornet's nest, the existence of which he doesn't even suspect. It can be expected that the front of the confrontation of Russia will be carried out not only on the Middle East. In Russia the order of 18-20 million ethnic Muslims, many of them are practicing Muslims, but the number of practicing Muslims is growing every year. For a large part of these 18-20 million of what is happening in the Muslim world, is a significant event, they are ready to respond to it, even more so after the corresponding propaganda and cash infusions.

Earlier Muslim underground in the Northern Caucasus, Volga region had not received real help from Muslim world abroad and tight enough to be controlled by the Russian secret services, now the situation can change radically, and Russia will face challenges that it cannot simply be resolved. This is already beginning to happen. A few days ago it was posted on the Internet video of several Chechen fighters, who said they are part of the "Caucasus Emirate", and are subject to Abu Hamza, brother of the slain leader of the Caucasus Emirate's last "Docks" Umarov, he is a representative of the "Emirate" in Turkey. That is, they are direct agents of the Turkish "Emirate", and they arrived in Chechnya and are prepared to commit Jihad. Characteristically, they were armed with pistols Glock is an Austrian pistol which is very popular in the West, but in Russia it is quite difficult to get hold of, that is, the more likely it is people who arrive on the territory of Chechnya from abroad. On the other hand — the "Emirate Caucasus" rivals in the armed underground in the Northern Caucasus: Caucasian Vilayat "Islamic State" was organized some time ago. His leadership appealed to all Muslims of the Russian Federation not to leave to Syria and Jihad on the territory of Russia. That is, both armed underground wing, which operates in Russia, stated that begin action in the Northern Caucasus. I think this is only the first swallow. Thus, Russia may face a sharp increased terrorist activity on its territory. The second one is faced with a serious armed resistance in the territory of Syria, which inevitably leads to large losses. Typing 30 aircraft, entering 1500 troops, Putin thinks that it can stay, but he will have to or strengthen these forces, or show them urgently. Russian base already firing installations "Grad", which is located in the mountains at a distance of 40 kilometers. Syrian Islamists themselves, the forces of Free army and Al-Qaida, and Al-Nusra reported about these attacks. Talk about numerous casualties among the Russian military, the Russians any data not published. No other evidence of no casualties. But this is not surprising: 40 kilometers of a sufficiently large distance, they have no instruments and no precision weapons. If they have these weapons, Russian forces would begin to really lose because to withdraw the bases easily enough, Russian troops then have to really get in these mountains and act at a distance of 40 kilometers from them to suppress these launchers. There is a certain logic of war. If you fit into it, then you have only two choices: either quickly withdraw their forces from the battlefield, or permanently increase its presence. And the third front, that can be easily opened and Saudi Arabia, other countries in the Muslim world in General, is the economic front. We have heard already statements by Erdogan about Russian gas. Saudi Arabia's oil policy is sufficiently known, there are other methods of action until the closure of the Bosphorus for Russian ships. These military provocations, Putin violations of Turkish airspace by Russian aircraft have almost gave Erdogan the legal justification for such action. Events can develop as a snowball, and it is the worst scenario for Russia, which only could come up with and which Putin himself has prepared.

— That means participation of Russian troops in this conflict for Israel? And as the various political forces in Israel perceive participation in this war?

— There is a Jewish expression: the choice between the plague and cholera. This is the choice that before Israel. On the one hand, of course, Israel commit not sympathetic to Assad, who so far when every occasion declares that its aim is to destroy Israel and after the victory he would main Zionist enemy. Opponents of Assad from a number of Al-Qaida or the Islamic State "is also not simpatizanty Israel. The emergence of Russia at this theater is a great threat for Israel. If the Russian weapons will hit Hezbollah, which repeatedly shelled Israel, this is the greatest threat to Israel. In addition, all contemporary Israeli leadership grew in war with the Soviet Union. In Russia prefer do not remember, but the Soviet army for decades fought a real war against Israel in the same Syria up to 50 thousand Russian civil war who took part in the hostilities. Prime Minister Netanyahu can tell a lot about those parts of Syria, where there are Russian troops, he relied on their walk because there was an officer in the special forces General Headquarters, which operated behind the front lines. Now it is known that he participated in the kidnapping of several Syrian generals who were then exchanged for Israeli pilots. This happened in precisely those areas that now bombard the Russian Aviation. That is, Israel is very concerned about the appearance of Russian forces. We remember that for decades, Russia was an enemy of Israel and an enemy of absolutely not provoked, Russian and Soviet we did nothing wrong.

In Israel really fear that this situation can happen if Putin succeeds in gaining a foothold in Syria if it can create a Shiite coalition of peace, Hizbullah, Iran, the Shiite Government of Iraq, the Assad Government headed by Russia — here, I think, and Israeli society, Israeli Government and military leaders are unanimous that this would constitute a very big threat to the security of Israel. In the good intentions of the Russian leadership no one in Israel does not believe, so the reaction was harsh enough. You know, that was an urgent visit by Netanyahu to Moscow along with the Israeli military leadership. Until this article appeared in the Israeli press, which can be seen as plums of Israeli military and political leadership that Israel will be to shoot down Russian planes and destroy Russian objects if it considers that this would pose a threat to Israel's security. How can I understand the talks between Putin and Netanyahu were rigid enough. Putin does that he has a conversation with most European and American politicians in Israel do not fear nuclear war. Only the biggest baton, which he frightens the West is Russia's nuclear forces. Psychologically, the Israelis do not fear nuclear war we live with this threat for years. By the way, the same way Israeli missiles can strike Moscow, as Russian could hit Jerusalem. Moreover, in Israel the world's most advanced missile defense system. Israel is among the four countries that have not just nuclear weapons but also its media all three areas — land, air and underwater. In this sense, Israel could talk with Putin on equal terms. I think that Moscow does not remember the experience of participation in the 1948 Arab-Israeli war, but remembered in Israel, then Russia suffered heavy losses. In principle, Israel ready for armed confrontation with Russia, if he feels that this will pose a threat to its security. I think that the Israeli leadership said the Russian leadership in Moscow, it was heard. Because the operational headquarters was created, Deputy Chief of the General staff came to do this in Russia Jerusalem, which aims to establish a mechanism that would permit avoid direct armed confrontations. That was outside the scope of these negotiations that Israel and Russia both expressed confidence that they are not interested in a direct military clash. While Israel monitors the actions of Russia, fully armed. Given that recently created a very warm relationship, in fact, cooperative relations between Jerusalem and Riyadh in military field, then you can believe that those efforts made by Saudi Arabia in order to squeeze out Russian troops, will somehow be coordinated and with Israel, although Saud and enough leverage and finance and weapons without any help, they don't need any help. Let's take a look. Yet what is happening on the part of Israel, is an armed neutrality and readiness for any possible developments.

Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty

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