A senior US administration official says Russia will not be able to hold out long in Syria with “no future” for Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in the Arab country.
Quoting several administration officials, CNN reported Thursday that no ambiguity remains about Russia’s strategy in Syria. According to the report, President Barack Obama’s administration assessment is that Russia is seeking to take over the airspace in the region and be the agenda-setting force on the ground.
“The Russians can’t be stupid,” said a senior administration official. “This is going to be wildly expensive. And they can’t hold out long.”
“They know in the end there is no future for the guy (Assad) because the whole reason they had to come in is because Assad and his forces were extremely vulnerable,” said the official.
The official who spoke on condition of anonymity called on Russians “to come to their senses, stabilize the situation and then we can agree on the Assad piece.”
Russia launched airstrikes against the Daesh Takfiri terrorists near the city of Homs on Wednesday after US refused to comply with Moscow’s demand to take its warplanes out of Syria.
Another official, however, described Russia airstrikes against Daesh in Syria as a “strategic blunder”.
CNN also quoted an unnamed official as saying that Washington has no plans to cede Russia any ground. He said it appears that Russian President Vladimir Putin made a dramatic chess move that the Russians have not thought through.
On Thursday, the administration launched talks through video teleconference with Moscow military officials.