Moscow (GPA) – The Russian Ministry of Defense (MoD) says the war in Syria is still dragging on thanks to the US providing support to terrorists – specifically Daesh.
Russian MoD spokesman, Major General Igor Konashenkov, said in a statement on Wednesday that “The main obstacle to the complete elimination of Daesh in Syria is not the military capabilities of terrorists, but rather the support of [our] American colleagues.”
Konashenkov’s comments came as a response to a recent offensive operation by Daesh, allegedly launched from areas where the “US military mission is present.” This action took place about a week ago in eastern Syria, near the border with Jordan, and saw the mobilization of several hundred Daesh militants who left the city of Rubkan heading north for Al-Qaryatayn.
If you view these two locations on a map, you will notice there is some distance between the two cities which is part of what has spawned this new criticism by Russia. The route between the two cities is far from lawless, guarded by several Syrian military outposts that Daesh managed to locate and evade in preparation for their offensive.
The problem with this maneuver according to Konashenkov is the fact that it launched from a US-controlled zone on the Jordanian border. He also added that, for Daesh to avoid these military outposts, they would have needed complex aerial reconnaissance data that they aren’t capable of gathering themselves.
The attack also coincided with another operation by Daesh in eastern Syria, in the area around Raqqa and Deir Ezzor, where they are currently in the midst of a three-sided conflict that also involves Russian and Syrian forces as well as the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), backed by the US.
The Russian MoD published photos from this area earlier this month showing what they claim to be US and SDF forces operating from a compound located inside Daesh territory. In the Major General’s own words, this is easily conceivable when you view the recent events in this region as proof that “a quick liberation of the Euphrates River valley from [Daesh] apparently runs contrary to the U.S. plans.”
This is only the latest in a series of these accusations by Russia, but they seem to be getting more plausible every time. The SDF’s fight Raqqa has pushed Daesh out into the countryside between the SDF in the north and SAA in the south. Somehow, with the weight of both forces bearing down on them, Daesh continues to have enough strength and tactical ability to continue planning offensives.
Also published on Medium.