168.am: Mr * l Cheterian, the newly elected President of the United States Donald trump without the consent of Congress decided to strike with cruise missiles located in the Western province of HOMS Syrian government forces. It is, in fact, was a response to the rumors a few days ago the news that the Syrian government has used chemical weapons, caused the death of at least 50 people, including children. This information the Syrian government has denied, and trump called it a “red line”. The U.S. action raises a number of issues, as the United States for six years, first strike on Syrian government forces. What does this mean for the Syrian conflict?
Vigen * l Cheterian: This, of course, was big news, because during the presidency of Barack Obama, contrary to popular public opinion and impression that the Americans have very serious interests and actively involved in the Syrian conflict, the United States for six years eschewed the Syrian events. The reason is that the US has in Syria was not large interests, and Obama tried to withdraw American troops from the Middle East and Afghanistan. And the shock of this night (the night of 6 to 7 April) showed that trump will lead a more active military policy in the middle East. Perhaps it was not the only signal. Before that, we saw that the military actions of us forces against a much weakened Iraq, Yemen, and other targets. This step showed that the United States in the middle East, especially in Syria, will play a more active political and military role.
— American airstrikes first responded to the Russian side at the level of the President and the foreign Minister, who compared the air strikes with the invasion of Iraq 14 years ago, appreciating them as withoutosnovatelno military aggression against the military forces of Syria. Given this heightened rhetoric, Russia’s interests in Syria, how will this affect Russian-American relations?
— In terms of discourse, everything that is coming out of the Kremlin, shows that there is tension. But on the other hand, we all understand that the attacks of this night carried a rather symbolic character. First, you need to keep in mind that it was running 59 missiles “Tomagafk” on a military base, and there are only six dead. Something’s not right, because it’s too powerful missiles, each of which carries power, smooth 450 kilograms, the destructive capabilities of these missiles is much higher.
There’s something wrong. Don’t know how reliable was the information, but there are rumors that the United States informed the Russian military command about a possible strike, that there was some cooperation.
Beyond the diplomatic rhetoric, we must note that this is a political message, “letter”, which, of course, plays a role in the politics of the Middle East, Russian-American relations. But, in my opinion, the most important part of this step is the internal policy of America. In my opinion, Trump needs to show that he’s strong, he’s a leader, makes decisions, plays a role. We need to consider this step in the context of US domestic politics, because trump is perceived as a weak leader.
— Although at the highest level it is noted that the bumps will no longer be in Your opinion, how long will this policy, also taking into account the possible reaction of the Russian side?
— This morning (the eighth of April), the us military command said that they would not continue the shocks, that is, it was a symbolic strike, which mostly focused on the resumption of negotiations, rather than the violation of the balance of the Syrian conflict by military means. This is a symbolic diplomatic message, and no more.
— In your opinion, the American side managed to solve the tasks, and internal and external?
It is hard to say, but trump on the background of their difficulties and failures trying to show the Americans that consolidate public opinion around this program. But, in my opinion, trump’s very serious problems, and a couple of strikes on Syria it can’t solve its domestic problems, only to redirect attention from his administration to the middle East. But don’t think its systemic problems that arose because of his promises and image, will be addressed through the Syrian crisis.
— What will be the Russian reaction to this, what is the response? Russia will go the way of escalation of confrontation?
— Neither the US nor Russia are not interested to aggravate the situation around the Syrian conflict, this is a very small issue, there are millions of people who suffer, Yes, but for large States Syria is not a military or economic importance. Direct confrontation between Russians and Americans around Syria I categorically rule out.
If no this step is aimed at the Russian side, do you think?
— The Russian leadership on this issue also should be considered in the context of US domestic politics. Trump himself is regarded by Democrats as a puppet of Putin, or, at least, an ally of Putin. One of the most important signals of trump is that he can take a tough stance even in relation to Putin.
— Although you do not predict the escalation of the situation in Russian-American relations, Armenia has concerns that Armenia may be involved in the conflict to force Russia, considering the Russian military presence in Armenia and influence. How relevant are these fears?
— In my opinion, the unresolved conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan, difficult relations with Turkey, an Alliance with Russia are a totally different material in international relations, which is not part of the military or political balance in the middle East. These fears are far from reality. First, the action should not be put out of their context, and secondly, I don’t think that would be a huge escalation that it had an impact on Armenia.
— Is it possible that this strict position of the trump spread to other conflicts, including the Karabakh conflict, where the US and Russia are working as mediators and where the United States recently recognized the dominant mediating role of Russia?
— I don’t think. If impact, then there are a number of other candidates — Iraq, Ukraine. Karabakh is not one of the important hot spots. In Karabakh in the past year was the April confrontation, but by world standards this is a very small incident, even one day in Syria or Iraq. In Syria over the past six years, dying every day 100-150 people, Karabakh occupies a very modest place.