Sunday, March 6, 2016

Why Russia Is Winning The 'Proxy Wars'

Russia's President Vladimir Putin (C) attends a conference at the main operation centre of the Russian armed forces, with Defence Minister Sergei Shoigu (L) and armed forces Chief-of-Staff Valery Gerasimov (R) in Moscow, June 6, 2013. Credit: Reuters/Michael Klimentyev/RIA Novosti/Kremlin

Michael Kofman, National Interest: How to Lose a Proxy War with Russia

The only winning move is not to play

The tenuous cease-fire deal in Syria offers an opportunity for reflection on not just the Syrian war, but also the conflict in Ukraine, where the war burned bright this time last year and still simmers. Aspects of the conflict in Syria offer a window on how a proxy war might have played out in Ukraine. The circumstances are decidedly different, but the mechanics of fighting a proxy war with Russia on one side and the West on the other remain the same. Russia's intervention in Syria is a useful vantage point from which we can look back on the bitter policy debates that were held in 2014 and 2015 on how best to help Ukraine militarily. The Syrian war provides important insights, and in some cases analytical verdicts, on the then hotly contested question of sending lethal weapons to Kyiv.

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WNU Editor: My must read post for today.

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