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Old 4 Hours Ago   #2081
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Originally Posted by Azor View Post
I meant that in a very loose sense. Russia has difficulty playing with others in the kindergarten so it doesn’t have much in the way of friends. Syria was a friend of Iran’s but it was certainly friendly toward Russia, and was part of the ad hoc authoritarian axis that allegedly resists "American imperialism", or more accurately, the spread of liberal democracy.
Oh man, Azor... do I really have to waste even more time with this....

After Gorbachev stopped the military cooperation with Syria, and stopped all the arms deliveries too, in 1988, Damascus stopped paying all debts to the USSR, rumoured at between US15 and 17 billion. From 1988 until today, Syrians didn't pay a single cent of that debt back to Moscow.

For 10 years, from 2000 until 2011, Rosobornexport was literaly besieging the HQ of the SyAAF in order to secure orders. In 2001, they've sent a pair of Su-27s for Syrian for flight testing; five years later they've sponsored a huge, 15x4 metres big banner showing two Su-30s that was hung above the entry to the very same HQ; in 2007, they've sponsored live firing exercise for a big group of Syrian pilots in Russia, etc. Russians are really the last to make presents, but Syrians just didn't move. All of this was without any kind of success.

Then Putin wrote off 50% of the Syrian debt - and what did he get in return? In 2008, Damascus cancelled all - and I mean: every single one - oil/gas and construction contracts signed with Moscow. Instead, he signed contracts with Chinese, Canadian and whatever other companies. Immediately afterwards, Assad ordered 33 second-hand MiG-23s from Belarus.

And through all of this time, Moscow didn't once make any kind of use of that 'base' in Tartous. Not one ship stopped there, not one replenished, not one was repaired or else.

In essence, and in summary: for 23 years - from 1988 until 2001 - military cooperation between Syria and Moscow was exactly this: 0.

And shall I now talk about earlier times? Kweres and Jirrah ABs were constructed by Poles, Homs Military Academy by Czechoslovaks (who also had 10-15 professors teaching there for most of the 1960s and 1970s)... and it's long since I've lost the count of stories about Syrian officers having fistfights with their Soviet advisors (one even pistol-slaped one in the face) from the two periods during which there was any kind of a serious military cooperation (namely 1973-1975 and 1982-1988).

But nah: Syria is a Russian 'client state'...?

Surely enough, it is one: in the minds of drunken Russian nationalists, and those of clueless Westerners.

Proof of what? How often have the Russians violated the airspace of any NATO country with their IFF-transponders off since that ROE was introduced, back in 2015? How do you provide proofs for 0?

Military affairs and wars? That is curious, because both you and Outlaw seem to believe that you know what was going on behind closed doors in Obama’s National Security Council and that you understand Putin’s intentions.
Well, one problem people like you have is this: you do not understand that people are talking, no matter in what positions they are. Even those with highest possible security clearances are doing that.

Indeed, such especially - and foremost when asking for advice.

And regarding Putler: 2+2 is 4. Always, and no matter from what side you try it.

Sure, paid PR-clowns like Kujat (or take any of Putler's puppets in the USA, if you prefer) can appear on the TV and try to explain that 2+2 is 5, as often as they like, but 2+2 remains 4.

And because 2+2 is always 4, it's simply silly to insinuate whatever kind of 'what ifs' about a country with the GNP of Spain and its ability to challenge the USA in an open military confrontation. Even more so in an area 2000 kilometres away from its borders, where it has NO bases, nor even any true allies.

So OSINT on military capabilities and activities is now the same as politics and intent?
... this is leaving me at lack of words.

I'll expand my statement in which I expressed my expectation that people visiting forums of this kind should have at least the most basic understanding of military affairs: people trying to discuss such topics should also have the bare understanding of other people's abilities to inform themselves and 'connect the dots', too.

Like I said above: 2+2 is 4. Always. So, if you would spend less time trying to discuss what ifs that belong within realms of science fiction, and instead trying to track Russian military activities, study their training, their equipment, strategy, tactics and doctrine, and then do so for years, perhaps even decades, then you would be in a position to draw logical conclusions not only about Russian military activities, but their military capabilities and intentions too.

In such case, yes: OSINT is perfectly enough to draw perfectly useful conclusions. Thanks for asking.

Alright, I’ll play.
  • Assad’s air force is grounded, and he goes back to relying on his ground forces
  • buzzzzz... Assad's air force is grounded, and he realizes he's left without troops to continue the war - which is why Iran launched its military intervention in Syria, in 2012. So what?

  • Moscow and Teheran decide that U.S.-supported regime change is imminent
  • buzzz... Tehran concluded this already in 2011. Moscow didn't care until July 2015. As of 2013, neither was in a position to do anything about this.

  • Assad formally invites Russian and Iranian forces to Syria to defend it against foreign aggression
  • buzzzz... didn't happen (at least not in 2013; otherwise it would've been reported). While, the Pentagon and various of NATO allies stoped something like 15 minutes before from launching a military operation against Assad.

  • Russia begins dispatching naval units and combat aircraft to Syria
  • buzz... didn't happen (at least not in 2013). And was also not intended by the Russians.

    This happened only in 2015 and then for reasons I explained above: Putler went to Syria because he was sure Oblabla wouldn't. Indeed, because the Iranians told him that Oblabla promised Tehran he wouldn't. And Iranians could do so because Oblabla told them so - in exchange for his silly nuclear deal, signed... drums... in July 2015.

    Homework for Azor: connect the dots between the Iranian nuclear deal, signed in July 2015, and the Iranian call for a Russian military intervention, issued in July 2015.

    Any bells ringing there?

  • Iran starts an airlift of men and materiel using civilian airliners
  • buzzzz... is going on already since 2012. And...?

  • Iran and Russia publicly declare that the NFZ is illegal and that they will ignore it
buzzz... they can declar whatever they like. There's no NFZ, but a BLOCKADE.

Now, pay attention, there might be a difference between these two expressions: 'blockade' and 'no-fly zone'. Seemingly, one consists of two words, and it could be the number of letters is different too. That might indicate that their meaning is different as well. Just for example, the former doesn't even require, say, US or allied aircraft to fly within the Syrian airspace. It only says, nothing is flying to or out of Syria.

And then, all provided you can still follow, explain me please: who can, say, prevent Turkey from closing its airspace for all Russian aircraft if it likes to do so? (And keep in mind: Turkey did close its airspace for Russian military aircraft, ever since September 2015). Who can prevent Jordan from closing its airspace for all Iranian aircraft?

And: who was in control of the Iraqi government as of 2013?

But, sigh... and as frankly as always: these are things people like you do not think about, and that's why you then wonder about so many things like expressed in such posts like this one, and cry around 'can't believe, can't believe'.

Last edited by CrowBat; 4 Hours Ago at 09:40 PM.
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Old 4 Hours Ago   #2082
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[QUOTE=Azor;204519]From The Jamestown Foundation:

By Pavel Felgenhauer
More recently, however, reports surfaced that the SAA has flown a number of its still-operational jets to an airfield adjacent to the Khmeimim airbase, apparently to avoid another devastating US attack. But according to Russian military experts, being based out of an area near Khmeimim could seriously hamper further Syrian air operations (, April 20). Russia’s public bluff was called, and it turned out the Russian “denial of access” air defenses are not as formidable as believed and apparently guarantee cover from cruise missile attack only in the immediate vicinity of the Tartus and Khmeimim bases—a sobering climb-down for Russian state/military propaganda.
Et tu, Pavel...?

Seems that with nobody checking the map of airfields in Syria is a sort of a virus. It spread from the CENTCOM via Department of Defence to the CNN and meanwhile caught even Pavel Felgenhauer...
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