Russia aims to redraw map in Syria before next U.S. president takes office

The New York Times reports: Russia is using the waning days of the Obama administration to strengthen President Bashar al-Assad’s hold on power, expand the territory he controls in Syria and constrain the options of the next American president in responding to the civil war, according to a number of American officials and Russian analysts.

The strategy of President Vladimir V. Putin of Russia, they say, is to move aggressively in what he sees as a prime window of opportunity — the four months between now and the 2017 presidential inauguration — when Mr. Putin calculates that the departing President Obama will be unlikely to intervene in the escalating Syrian conflict and a new American president who might consider a tougher policy will not yet be in office.

“Putin is in a hurry before the American elections,” said Nikolai V. Petrov, a political scientist in Moscow. “The next American president will face a new reality and will be forced to accept it.” [Continue reading…]

Print Friendly, PDF & Email