Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Dunford says Russia saved the Assad regime from collapse.

“Let me be honest. I think the Syrian regime was reeling last July or August and is stabilized right now and Assad and the regime is certainly in much better shape than they were before the Russian intervention,” Gen. Joseph Dunford, Joints Chiefs Chairman, said during a panel discussion at the Center for Strategic International Studies.

He said Russia claimed that its intent was to go after Daesh when it intervened in Syria in September but Moscow’s withdrew while there is a lot still to be done against the militant group.

The majority of Russian airstrikes were on U.S. and Turkey backed opposition groups, according to the Pentagon.

Laying out several challenges for the U.S. around the globe, Dunford said Russia is also challenging the stability of eastern Europe, particularly in Ukraine.

He noted that there is a military “adversarial competition” against the U.S. that affects American interests.

“The adversaries know exactly what the threshold is for us to take a decisive military action, so they operate below that level,” he said, referring to Russia and China.

“They continue to advance their interests and we lose competitive advantage, and frankly our interests are adversely affected.” U.S. commanders are going to meet next week to discuss about how to deal with global adversaries,
according to Dunford, who suggested the U.S. military should maintain military-to-military communication with Russia in order to avoid miscalculations.

Dunford said he has spoken with his Russian counterpart "three times" this year and described it as a "professional dialogue."
First.  This is the first semi-official statement regarding how effective the Russian intervention was in Syria.  Dunford was playing the polite, sophisticated word smithing that Washington loves.

To be blunt?  Syria was going tits up and the Obama Admin had the party hats out to celebrate the Assad regime going under.  Putin canceled the party and pissed in the lemonade.

The Russian intervention in Syria will probably be seen as a masterstroke by historians in the future.

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