Washington (GPA) – Shortly after Russian foreign minister Sergey Lavrov issued a warning of “proportionate” response to US aggression on Syria, Washington tried to make their retreat look like a victory.
As our readers already know, earlier this week the Trump regime issued a warning to the Syrian government that there would be retaliation for a chemical attack that hadn’t happened. The warning was said to be based on intelligence that the Syrian government was moving chemical weapons around the country, towards the same airbase alleged to have been used in April in the town of Khan Sheikhoun.
While many believe the incident in Khan Sheikhoun was either a false flag by US allied takfiris, or at least a byproduct of a Syrian bombing on a terrorist facility that stored industrial chemicals; the US has continued to push the story that it was the result of the Syrian military using Sarin gas. US leaders blamed not only the Syrian government for this fantasy but also allies of the country such as Russia for “letting it happen.”
This caused concern among many groups opposed to US imperialism following this week’s warning, making them suspicious the US would blame another chemical attack on Bashar al-Assad shortly after this warning was issued. This seemed likely based on past history of the Syrian conflict, where the government has been accused of chemical attacks shortly after every major US policy pronouncements concerning Syria.
Russian officials also seemed to think this would be the case. This is most likely what prompted yesterday’s warning by Lavrov, who announced that if the US attacked Syria, Russia’s response would be “proportionate.”
Lavrov told reporters that Russia’s “reaction will be dignified and proportionate to the situation that may take shape,” which marked a new turn in the war. Lavrov clearly demonstrated with these words that the Russia would no longer tolerate the increasing direct US attacks on their ally.
Those who praise the Russian role in Syria have been growing increasingly concerned that as the US has become more aggressive in Syria, Russian response seemed contained or non-existent. Now that seems to have changed with direct promises of retribution for further US violations of international law.
The US apparently took this threat seriously, but still searched for a way to save face. US secretary of defense James Mattis issued the bold statement last night that he felt Syria “took the warning seriously.” The only evidence offered that shows that the US threats have worked was just the absence of a chemical attack. This is all despite the fact that even some US officials said the intelligence on Syria was “far from conclusive” and “did not come close to saying that a chemical weapons attack was coming.”
The Trump regime has obviously assumed Russia would continue to allow them to act with impunity in Syria. Lavrov’s statement seems to signal that the period of US dominance of Syria’s future is now over. If Russia continues to offer these new bold defenses, it’s unclear what the US will be able to do in Syria, especially with the initial threat of the Islamic State almost gone.
James Carey is an organizer based in Detroit, Michigan, founder of Geopolitics Alert, and an experienced analyst on Middle Eastern affairs with a particular focus on Turkey. He also covers topics ranging from Latin America and Asia to Europe. You can also hear James in his weekly podcast; The Left is Dead which he co-hosts with investigative journalist Jake Anderson.