The Iranian and Arab press has released a report that suggests that there is a massive number of Russian forces amassing during the ongoing Syrian conflict. The town which is located in Der Ez Zor province along the Euphrates River. Although it is not easy to verify or corroborate the reports, there is a good reason to not discard them as unimportant.
The reason to believe the report include the fact that this town in question sits on a strategic position. The town is on the Euphrates demarcation line, and this line is what separate the Russian forces and its Iranian and Syrian allies from the US forces in both northern and eastern Syria. When this location of Syrian conflict is viewed from a map, the Euphrates is linked to the Iranian land supply network through Al Mayadin. Al Mayadin is located along the highway from Iraq and connects to two separate highways, one to the north connecting the Euphrates and the other to the east connecting southern area affected in Syria. With this key routes part of the Iranian land network, the report of the Russian forces amassing in the town.
What are the Russians up to?
Well, there may be two things involved; the first is that Russians what to be the ones who decide what will pass through the Al Mayadin. And with increasing deviation from the interest of both Russia and Iran. The control of Al Mayadin will give Russia more freedom to carry out their dealings with Israel. This is because the Russian president wants to convince the Israel Prime Minister that he will support its bid to constraint the smuggling of Iranian weapons through places like Al Mayadin. That is if the Israelis are willing to pressure the USA’s rule of Bashar Assad during the ongoing Syrian conflict.
The second being that the Russians are repositioning themselves along the Euphrates to allow them to threaten the American forces both east and north of the river. The decision by the US president to keep its troops in Syria agitated Russia deeply as the presence of the US in Syria will influence the political process in the country. The presence of the US forces will also allow the US to pressure Assad on the crime against civilians in the country war zones like Idlib.
Although, it worth noting that the Russian has always sought to push The US out of Syria by launching several attacks against them. Fortunately, now the Defense Secretary – Jim Mattis has given the US forces the go-ahead to defend themselves against any further attacks.
Ultimately, there is always more to the Russian ground force during the Syrian conflict. So, ensure to follow closely.