The Iran is associated with Syria for many years by a military assistance pact for the protection against a foreign aggression, especially against a foreign aggression by Israel and the United States. Iran considers the security of Syria as its own security and vice versa.
Iran has in the course of the current US-Turkish campaign for regime change in Syria repeatedly emphasized, that Iran fulfils the military assistance pact on reciprocity in the case of a Syrian request, which is the least to expect in the case of an open invasion by NATO countries under headlines such as “Establishment of a border-near protection zone”.
With the Quds Force of the Revolutionary Guards, which are specialized in covert operations abroad, Iran has a Special Forces team that is considered very effective and as experienced in guerrilla warfare enough so that Iran could use it for the defence of Syria and also in a gruelling guerrilla war against potential NATO occupation of Syria.
In addition, Iran has also a fairly well-developed arms industry that produces large numbers of useful basic equipment in light and medium weapons and ammunition for troops that operate in the field, and the Special Forces. Furthermore, the governance that Iran has with its internationally established media and their good relations with many opinion-leading theologians across the Islamic world a significant amount of soft power.
Moreover, Iran has a civilian economy that was built on the backbone of its oil and gas production, by which Iran is among the twenty largest economies in the world.
Thus, Iran is in a position to protect the Syrian government against the anti-Syrian terror war and against the decay through the consequent sanctions of the NATO and GCC states, for example, when they are not able to feed the Syrian people, no more able to pay a well-funded payment to the Syrian soldiers or when they are no more able to adequately supply weapons, ammunition, equipment and fuel to the army uniformly.
Iran’s interest to stop a Zionist-Wahhabi regime change attack against Syria is virtually limitless. The governance of Iran believes that the Zionist-Wahhabi attack against Syria aims actually on Iran itself, Syria is thus attacked by the plot of regime change, in order to prepare a more extensive attack on Iran itself.
For Iran, it means to be given the choice, to either confront these forces on Syrian soil, or to fend them shortly afterwards on their own soil. Against this background, it follows, that Iran uses all its skills to fend the plot against Syria. Iran is indeed thereby open for another government that was also established by masses.
The red line of Iran is thereby the shown resistance by the majority of the Syrian population, not less because of the on-going Zionist occupation of Syrian territory, against the colonial concept of Zionism that explains the result of the close friendship with Iran.
The Syrian neighbour countries Iraq and Lebanon are weak states, in where the governments that are friends of Syria, have not even really a control over their entire territory. Therefore, they are hardly in a position to help Syria with political power, economic power and military performance.
The essential goal of the leaderships of these states that are friends of Syria is to not expose oneself because of the events in Syria, and thus endangering their own government power. They implement this goal at the best with a policy of neutrality towards the events in Syria.
However, both Iraq and Lebanon provide valuable opportunities for the transit of goods, people and money in their neutrality towards Syria, which are hardly to get circumcised by the anti-Syrian regime-change coalition.
Beirut provides Damascus a harbour that is independent of their territory and a gateway to the Western world, and Iraq provides Damascus with a connection to Iran and the Asian world, which can hardly be cut down by the anti-Syrian regime-change coalition.
Of a totally different calibre is Russia, a nuclear power with a global reach. Russia’s major global political strength lies in its defence industry. Aircrafts, attack helicopters and armoured vehicles, which were built in Russia, offer a significant advantage for every army in clashes with lightly armed irregulars.
Modern Russian missile systems for air and sea defences are even obstacles for the combat aircraft and naval forces of the NATO countries that cannot be overcome without a costly total war for all sides.
Russia itself is also not to defeat militarily by the NATO states: overt military attack on Russia itself entail the danger that such a war leads into a nuclear war that destroys the entire world, in which the attacking NATO countries, including the U.S. superpower, can expect their destruction by the strategic Russian nuclear forces.
The economic interest of Russia in close relations with Syria is comparatively low. The civilian trade relations of Russia to the financially weak Syria are, especially compared to the Russian economic relations with the countries of NATO, so small that they are negligible from a Russian perspective.
The largest civil economic interests of Russia in relation to Syria would probably be the fact, that Syria is not being used as a transit country of Qatar for a gas pipeline to Europe, and that Qatar then would be a competitor for the Russian gas producer Gazprom on the European gas market. For Russia, it would be advantageous, if Qatar instead would be keen to sell its natural gas towards South Asia, such as Pakistan and India.
However, Qatar currently liquefies already a significant part of its natural gas and by the LPG exports to Europe by ship and so it already makes business competition for Russia in the European gas market.
The Russian interest exists in relation to the competition to Qatar so merely in the fact to prevent that Qatar could offer its gas a little cheaper to Europe than the liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) with a pipeline running through Syria.
It is important to point out that the technology of the liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) production will become cheaper by technological progress over time and that the gas prices will be under pressure in the future because of more efficient technologies for the extraction of shale gas, and that gas prices are capped to the top by the oil price, for example.
Another point, which concerns the interest of Russia to Syria, are the military relations with Syria. The Russian military port base in Syria is not so important from a Russian perspective. It wears virtually nothing to the defence of Russia, it projects into the surrounding states, as the unresisted breach of the UN Mandate by NATO has shown in Libya, no Russian military power and moreover, it costs money for Russia that could be well used somewhere else.
Of significance, however, is the fact that Syria is a client of the Russian arms industry. The importance of Syria follows not from the fact that Syria would be a particularly lucrative market for weapons.
Although Syria is a frontline state in the Arab-Israeli conflict, and therefore has a very high need for military spending, but at the same time, it is financially too weak to be a particularly lucrative customer.
Countries with a higher buying power like India, the emerging ASEAN countries, the oil-exporting Gulf monarchies and even the NATO member Turkey, are as a market for the Russian arms industry clearly more lucrative than the relatively financially weak state of Syria.
The importance of Syria as a Russian Expertise rather arises from the fact that Syria has been consistent upgraded quite extensive with modern Russian weaponry in recent years. Weapons of war such as air defence systems, of which Syria has received some modern Russian complexes in recent years, serve to defend the national sovereignty against foreign aggression.
When the Russian supplied defence systems to Syria are not able to prevent a war of aggression of NATO against Syria or to fend it, or at least, to inflict disastrous casualties on the side of the NATO attackers that the NATO states are no more interested in trying something like this again against a country that is protected by Russian weapons, then the arms purchases in Russia obviously do not fulfil its main purpose, namely, to protect the customers of wars of aggression, for example, by the NATO countries, which compete with Russia in terms of geopolitics.
So if Russia at the drop of a hat permits that the NATO countries overrun Syria like Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya militarily and conquer them with naked force, although Syria has purchased many modern weapons in Russia in order to exactly defend itself against this case, then, however, this means that the message is sent to the whole world that modern Russian weapons do not protect states that are coated with a war of aggression of NATO in order to get conquered.
That would be in future for every independent state in the world a strong argument against the situation to protect its sovereignty and independence with weapons that were purchased in Russia, and thus an extreme competitive disadvantage for the Russian arms industry.
And that would not only an extreme competitive disadvantage for the Russian arms industry, but also a clear disadvantage for Russia`s economic and political ability to cooperate with independent states. Should a State have the wish to decide to give Russia its preference in terms of policy and economy at important large-scale projects, like in the energy supply, than to choose the competition from NATO countries, and therefore becomes a thorn in the eye of NATO countries, then thee governments must therefore expect that they are not able to defend themselves with Russian weapons against a NATO war of aggression, thus they could give the precedence to the NATO countries for large project.
This disadvantage in the competitiveness of Russia would act in long term and in global against the entire Russian economy and also against political partnerships with Russia. And the prevention of this case is a massive Russian interest.
Another, very serious Russian interest is the fact that no forces in Syria come to power, who first seek to destabilize Iran and in a further step seek to destabilize the south of Russia by religious dressed-up operations of a guerrilla warfare. Russia is in accordance with Iran in the opinion that the US-led NATO and GCC forces that currently destabilize Syria with guerrilla war, terror, a systematically distorted victim-offender propaganda, and threats of war, also want to try such a sort of regime change in Iran after the seizure of power in Syria.
Russia is concerned that these irregular forces, if they are not previously stopped by Russia and Iran, will then attempt, coming from Iran, to destabilize the Russian South, such as Russia’s North Caucasus republics of Chechnya and Dagestan, by propaganda, religious dressed-up guerrilla warfare and terrorism.
Similar to Iran, the motive given to Russia to stop these forces is because the latter are already far away from Russia’s borders, rather than having to fight against them on its own soil later, and to suffer both immaterial and material losses by the defensive struggle in Russia. Unlike Iran, Russia is far away from Syria and sees itself first in a greater danger to get destabilized by the US-led NATO and GCC forces after Iran has already experienced such a threat.
And finally, there’s even a very fundamental political interests of Russia about the events in Syria.
Understanding the Disastrous Foreign Policy of Turkey – Part 1
Understanding the Disastrous Foreign Policy of Turkey – Part 2
Understanding the Disastrous Foreign Policy of Turkey – Part 3
Understanding the Disastrous Foreign Policy of Turkey – Part 4
Understanding the Disastrous Foreign Policy of Turkey – Part 5
Understanding the Disastrous Foreign Policy of Turkey – Part 6
Understanding the Disastrous Foreign Policy of Turkey – Part 7
Understanding the Disastrous Foreign Policy of Turkey – Part 9