Russia’s power play in the Middle East, under the guise of targeting ISIS, is disastrous, dangerous, and deadly.
First, Russia’s aggression in Syria is on President Obama’s head. Second, elections have consequences, and we are only just now beginning to experience those disastrous consequences.
One year ago, President Obama said, “We don’t have a strategy” on ISIS. Nothing has changed from President Obama, and now we are facing the consequences. ISIS is expanding. Over 250 Americans traitors have now joined ISIS in Syria – American jihadists. ISIS is gaining ground, gaining forces, and maintaining its unbelievable powering throughout the region.
Six years ago, President Obama and then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton made their infamous “reset button” ploy with Russia. It’s been an unmitigated failure.
Vladimir Putin’s insatiable quest for world power has run roughshod over President Obama’s intractable weakness.
Putin’s self-created crisis in Ukraine has been a debacle, but Russia’s defiant invasion into Syria could be a deadly disaster.
The latest situation is set up as a horrific nightmare scenario. Russia, which has long propped up Syria’s beleaguered Assad regime, claims it has decided to strike ISIS. That might sound good until you realize what is actually happening. Putin’s first air strikes in Syria are not against ISIS but the Free Syrian Army, the rebels fighting Assad’s regime.
To make matters worse, Putin has demanded that President Obama stand down the U.S. military’s (albeit limited) airstrikes against ISIS.
So to get this straight, Putin is going all in against the anti-Assad rebels to protect its puppet government in Syria, without attacking ISIS, while at the same time demanding the U.S. stop attacking ISIS.
If that’s not bad enough, here’s where it becomes an incredibly dangerous and geopolitically tense situation. The U.S. is rightfully refusing to back down in the fight against ISIS, but it sets up a situation not seen since Russian warheads were parked in Cuba.
Armed Russian fighter planes will be flying missions in close proximity to U.S. and allied military aircraft – with differing missions, differing rules of engagement, and different goals. The U.S. is fighting ISIS. Putin’s Russia is fighting to defend Assad and expand its control in the region.
These are diametrically opposed goals and missions.
One can only imagine the good chuckle Putin had when President Obama mocked Mitt Romney’s statements about the danger Russia poses to U.S. interests.
But this is no laughing matter. It is incredibly dangerous.
These are just the beginning of the consequences of more than a half-decade of President Obama’s failed foreign policy and leading from behind.
Matthew Clark is Senior Counsel for Digital Advocacy with the ACLJ. A lifelong citizen of the Commonwealth of Virginia, he lives with his wife and four children in Northern Virginia. Follow Matthew Clark: @_MatthewClark.