While Geneva talks were doomed from the start since there were wrong players (terrorists) or not all players at the table with notable absence of YPG and on the top of it we have massive reorientation of rhetoric of post coup Turkey and Erdogan “fake” Syrian peace offensive officially bought by Russia more for propaganda reason than as a genuine change in Turkish policies which are staunchly pro-western only because there is money there. So we hear “suppose” return to normalization between Turkey and Russia.
Nonsense, it is both sides’ political ploy to be seen distancing themselves from US position and especially Russia wants Erdogan to say that it is the US that is an enemy of MENA political order which would be much more kindly transmitted to the western audience conditioned as attack dogs against Russians no matter what. So US overtures like “we’re still friends” after new Turkish PM says they are not friends etc., numerous times.
And here we come to true reason for staged Turkish coup, namely, now an open fact that US wants to partition Syria into some fiefdoms administered from tel-Aviv which means creation of Kurdish statelets in Syria and even in Iraq under US protectorate and that what makes Erdogan furious even if he was one of instigators and accomplices of this US organized and executed proxy war against Assad.
Many would point out that Erdogan supported ANF and Islamic State from 2011 on so why no he complains about possible partition and disintegration of Syria. In fact he himself applying skillfully a “democratic” charade to take power for his Islamic brotherhood comrades envisioned the same fate for Syria namely a “democratic elections (when Assad is gone), new central government denominated by Islamic brotherhood (majority of Sunnis in Syria) emerges and while officially Syria as a state will continue, a close political alliance between Ankara and Damascus would be forged and spread a pan Arabic movement similarly to Arab Ba’ath party secularist movement emerged 60 years ago, but this time it would be religions movement under guise of a “benign” Sultan of Ankara and new Ottoman empire 2.0.
So here is the existential conflict between Turks and US and why US is pushing it so openly by directly warming to and supporting with its military power, YPG/PYD a Syrian reincarnation of PKK is a mystery or just monument to US stupidity or more likely deliberate sowing of more chaos.
But make no mistake Turkey is done it for leverage, and they do not intend to leave western connections or NATO while facing all conflicted MENA or Russia that is really unable to remove western ties from her economy and even political connotation of their oligarchic class.
So let not get carry away with “friendship” between Turkey and Russians, since it is more or less tactical agreement to build up a domestic political propaganda positions as “independent/opposing from US hegemonic ambitions” as well as conceal a new east-west arm race on global scale.
Also while it is good to finally hear that China officially took Syrian side of the conflict while before mostly was engaged in cooperation with Russians in their efforts in Syria. Of course it is not a change of course which is still to fight for certain respect, equal standing with the US but a response to verbal aggression and even military maneuvering in south China sea.
Only in this context we have sudden agreement between Turkey and Iran and surprisingly Russians which amounts to join fighting of PKK and their Syrian reincarnations YPG/PYD on all territories which translated in Russians abandoning Kurds and already resulted in fighting in Hasaka between PYD militia and SAA and SAAF attacking Kurds position for a first time since the war began [with some casualties], now considered as US proxies (like terrorists) not as neutral players acting before upon direct agreement with Assad regime to counteract the ISIL terror.
In such a geopolitical situation, changing alliances[ diplomatic thaw with Israel and Turkey] as an imbecile would have predicted five years ago but not US state dept, as I pointed out numerous times before since this phony ceasefire that amounted to nothing, a perspective of peaceful solution to the conflict is getting more and more distant and unachievable, as Lebanon conflict should teach us, may last 40 years on and off of continuing war and carnage and death ending up in stalemate and no viable solution for peace.
Is this what’s coming to Syria? Is my prediction of quagmire due to missed opportunity of February, 2016 real? Was this perhaps the only chance to destroy terrorists capability for war and end the strive? Unfortunately, it is what it looks like. And that make all the new deaths including children mostly killed, by terrorists but in some part by Assad regime and that including Russia truly senseless since the politics of war as it deteriorated in recent months, led to nowhere, and all the pain and suffering was clearly in vain, but that’s the story of all wars, all carnage fueled by money, greed and ambition having nothing to do with state goals and intentions. War is hell and hellishly manipulated for propaganda purposes images attest to that.
Also as far as recent media-wise developments are concerned, while US government tone became somewhat ambiguous, the MSM anti-Russian propaganda rhetoric reach zenith, in the context of electorate hysteria about Trump peace with Russian utterances, with assigning most of Syrian crimes committed but US friendly terrorist allies to Russia and Assad regime, who guess what, still must go even if in rennet weeks the US and Turkey admitted stabilizing effect of Assad on the war.
Finally Russian Federation officially disclosed combat deaths since 2015:
6,7,Okladnikov Andrei and Victor Pankov
11,12,Ryafagat Khabibulin and Evgeny Dolgin
14.Vadim Kostenko. Non-combat loss: suicide on the base.
The full list of official Russian casualties although it is likely at least twenty to fifty more than listed:
In fact the number could reach fifty if we count all those who were injured and died within days outside the immediate combat area, in Syria or back in Russia after week or months of medical treatment. Also there are estimated another twenty or more deaths of Russian soldiers or contractors on clandestine missions or due to friendly fire, all so far unconfirmed. A RF disclosure is a step in right direction as I have been advocating from late 2015 we need more regular updates.
A human and other costs of war must not be hidden to public; the pressure to end the war must persist against interests of abhorrent merchants of death.