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Trump’s contravention of his own ‘America-First’ policy
This could be regarded as the Trump Administration’s first foray into Syria as a direct combatant. President Trump earlier claimed that his vision is strongly guided by ‘America-first’ policy where he is not guided by the business of ‘regime change’ like his predecessors have been doing. He assured that he wants to take care of the American people, rather than routing America as the usual ‘world policeman’. So, what has changed his mind now?
Actually, the ‘America-first’ policy is not picking up due to multiple opposition forces including the ‘deep state’ resentment against it. Being a ‘realist’ President in the matters of international significance, Mr Trump has gained ‘vocal dissent’ within the core elements of his Republican party. Most importantly, President Trump’s fiasco with the Russian affairs as a whole has become such a messy affair that the ‘deep state’ in the United States has started to disturb his domestic as well as international policies. With this one muscular initiative, President Trump has tried to extinguish the fire against him by the dissident voices from such multiple sources, to secure ‘domestic bliss’ for himself.
The ‘deep state’ had struck back at President Trump to the point where he had no option but to reopen the Syrian conflict and put himself in a confrontational mode with Russia.
Future of Russia in the Syrian affairs
If the statements by the Russian Foreign Office are any indication, it seems that Russia will continue to stand with Syrian Government in the coming days. The statements have confirmed that the Russians are going to strengthen the air defence capabilities of Syria, armed forces and defence of Syria as a whole.
Besides calling the UN Security Council meeting and suspending mutual information exchange pact with the United States, Russia may not have acted adequately on the American missile attacks on Syria. Russian position of standing firmly with President Bashar Al Assad and opposing America’s regime change tactics will ultimately provide Russia with an upper hand in the region. In the recent times, the increasing Russia-Turkey ties among other things have put the United States at a backseat in the region. Therefore, the firing of Tomahawk missiles is clearly a tactic to regain the lost ground in the Syrian affairs. US Secretary of State, Rex Tillerson was already scheduled to visit Moscow for bilateral talks and the US could not have afforded an ‘upper-hand’ of Russia in the Syrian affairs. But it is to be noted that the Americans are not yet capable of changing the situation on the ground as the advances made by the Russian-Syrian nexus is impressive in terms of combating the rebels and the Islamic State terrorists.
Russia has revoked the US-Russia agreement to exchange information about each other’s flights to avoid military accidents in the crowded airspace of Syria. Either this could be a signal that any potential partnership between Russia and the United States to combat cooperatively against the Islamic States terrorists is finished or, this could also be a signal to the US to arrive at the negotiating tables to effectively end the conflict in Syria. Positively enough, the military hotline between the two countries is still operating which is a pragmatic approach to deal with this conflict.
The US plans for Syria
If regime change in Syria takes place successfully through terrorism and the US support to anti-establishment militia on the ground, then a similar strategy could be used against Iran next and ultimately in Russia.
While answering a question by a journalist, US Secretary of State clarified that ‘regime change’ is the objective of the United States in Syria. This is a radical shift from the position taken by President Trump both pre and post-Presidential elections in the US. Surprisingly enough, this position is also in a complete reversal of the position taken by US Ambassador to the United Nations Nikki Haley, just a week ago. From all the visible spectrum of ‘western’ objectives, the United States may opt for a division and partition of Syria and install a ‘Sunni regime’ in the eastern portion of Syria. This would help in twin objectives of preventing Russian gas pipeline to reach Europe and safeguard the America-led gas pipeline from Qatar to Europe.
Unfortunately, this is the same plan of Madam Hillary Clinton that President Trump used to undermine during the Presidential campaign. This leads us to a conclusion that President Trump has learned the ‘American’ way of politics and the ripple effects of the same might be seen in the whole world in the days to come.