Assad Is Close to Victory But New Conflicts Are Bubbling Up in Syria
The text belies the title. The Syrian War is not over. Assad is not winning. This is what I wrote in my Weekly Report:
- Turkey has not lost the war. It is now seen as a coveted asset by both US and Russia in a much broader Great Powers rivalry and known to be “transactional”, that is fickle and opportunistic. While these labels are pejorative in normal times, given its large military, sway over Sunni rebels and the 3.5 million strong refuge population it harbors, any peace deal must address its objectives.
We felt the need to repeat the objectives and the accompanying strategies of Turkey, because in the international discourse on Syria, only US and Russian objectives are viewed worthy of consideration, with Turkey being relegated to a third-rate bit player, or an order-taker. This is not true. Turkey is an actor at par with Russia (because Russia has no assets East of Euphrates) and US (because it wants to turn over the task of keeping post-ISIS Sunni unrest and Iranian infiltration under taps to Turkey). None of these actors can accomplish their aims without the help of at least one of the other.