Written by Nasser Kandil,
During a year of the Russian military escalated role in the Syrian war, it seemed clearly that Moscow’s goal has always remained to attract Washington to a cooperation in the war on Al Nusra front, because in their opinion it is the main source of danger against the country and the army in Syria and the betting hidden horse for all the seekers to overthrow the Syrian President, and without it there is no gate for any military or political opposition but the political solution which based on a unified government under the Syrian Presidency in preparation for elections in which he participates, and because of their deep belief that the differences between Al Nusra and ISIS are tactical, that are related to the difference between two mechanisms of promoting the doctrine of atonement and generalizing it as an approach , one mechanism wants to have the control on a part of a geography and to form a mechanism of local ruling that is similar to what Taliban and Al Nusra do, and another one supports its similarities where through the original organization it can have control over new geography, and then the return to the UN program of targeting the outside which is being handled by the original organization, exempting the local branches from the consequences of its classification on the terrorism’s lists.This is the approach of Ayman Al –Zawahri through which he succeeded in integrating the Muslim Brotherhood with the formations of Al-Qaeda in Syria, so one of Al-Nusra’s leaders has become the military leader of the Muslim Brotherhood, and he has cleared up the old approach of Al-Qaeda which was adopted by Osama Bin Laden and which ISIS is still continuing its work according to it, and going on doing the UN work and targeting the outside starting from the methodology of that the priority of the mobilization to the politics, because without the external work it cannot join the new human waves to the ranks of the organization.
This pivotal episode in the Russian strategy has remained present in all the stages of the military and the negotiating work, it has emerged clearly in the understanding which the Russians have spent months to achieve it with the Americans, they have received many criticisms from some of the allies for the absurdity of the attempt to attract the Americans to their project, and even to make them choose between the hypothesis of losing everything and the acceptance of this partnership. As the understanding has become a text and a political achievement that many people recognize the credibility of the attempt and the bet of Moscow, as its stumbling towards a violent public bombing of the US Russian relations has led people to talk again about the absurdity of the bet and the attempt together, but the question is what happened after that?.
In the field, a Syrian military campaign has been launched with the allies and through an exceptional Russian support in Aleppo and its countryside, it has succeeded within ten days of achieving qualitative breakthroughs and has formed a pressure on the West at its forefront Washington to talk about alternatives that prevent the fall of Aleppo under the control of the Syrian army, even if the title was covered by the humanitarian wrap.The talk has reached to US raids on the Syrian army and about alated missiles that target the airports’ runways, but the Russian response was fiercer. Moscow said that the system of S300 and the system of S400 will be operated against any aerial target, whether a plan or a missile, because there is no time for the networks and their radars to discriminate the destination, the target, and the source before dropping any flying object. The US responses were regressive by showing the lack of intention of such targets and the desire of the success of cease-fire.The White House has issued successive statements to illustrate the futility of the military option in Syria, as when the US Secretary of State John Kerry has already illustrated that in a leaked audio recording the meaning of that, the escalation will bring an escalation, and that the biggest loser will be the factions that are close to Washington which refused the recipe of the political solution and which will be crushed terminally according to Kerry’s speech.
What happened practically was that the hell which the Americans have warned their allies of its occurrence as a justification for their going to have an understanding with Moscow despite of all its concessions is no longer a dead paper but it has been achieved in reality, and that the escalation which will bring the escalation which Kerry has warned of has emerged as a scene of sequential episodes. But this not due to the theatrical distribution of the roles between Washington and Moscow but due to the fact that what have the Americans reached to and was refused by their allies is the best possible, and the fact that the only alternative is the hell as well as the fact that keeping pace of Washington’s allies by testing the resort to escalation was not fruitful as the expectations, which the Americans have already notified their allies that the escalation will lead to more escalation, thus to where?
It does not seem that the Russians and the Americans will emerge to the public to say that the return to the understanding is still the closest and the best recipe, but they may do that soon and may not, and the Americans may wait the scream of their allies and their appeals, as well as, the Syrian army may precede with its field movement the slowness of the political achievements, but suddenly and before anything the UN Envoy Steffan De Mistura emerged and announced a sudden initiative of humanitarian message about the eastern of Aleppo, that has invoked a reminder from the Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov to say that why did not we hear you when Al Nusra has launched its attack on Ramouseh threatening of besieging the West of Aleppo, knowing that it has double population of the people of the east of Aleppo?, but the most important is that De Mistura after crying he has presented a project that included in its premise a lot of lies and lot of the important facts, but he cannot talk what he already talked in facts and proposals except with the consent and perhaps a demand from the Americans, so what did De Mistura say?
For the first time we hear a frank statement that Al Nusra is present in the eastern of Aleppo and that it represented half of the armed body and the half of its force has come out to fight in the battles of Ramouseh and the second half remained. The most important here is the initiative. De Mistura said that the solution for ceasing-fire is not as Kerry said at the meeting of the Security Council and supported by the French and the British people that the Syrian army and its Russian ally will stop their raids and their aerial strikes for a continuous week to reassure the opposition factions and to prepare them psychologically to accept to dismantle their relation of Al Nusra, but the solution for ceasing –fire according to De Mistura supported by the Americans is what Lavrov has already said that Washington and the United Nations will take over the responsibility of dismantling the relation between the opposition and Al Nusra. De Mistura is running a risk by accompanying thousands of Al-Nusra members that are present in the eastern of Aleppo to complete cease-fire and to allow the entry of the relief convoys.
If we examine carefully the proposal of De Mistura, we will find that he presents an active mechanism to achieve the goal which the Russians have already insisted on and insist on considering it a condition for every calm, truce, ceasing-fire, and practical and political understandings. It is to dismantle the relation of Al Nusra of the other groups which are desired to be contributed in the truce, calm, and the political process. De Mistura and who is accompanied him know that what they already knew and because of that they disrupted the understandings. Whenever Al Nusra comes out the ability of the others to fight will fall, this is the recipe of De Mistura, he proposed it practically not the Russians or the Syrians that the way to achieve this separation between Al Nusra and the other groups is not by depending on a political role of Washington and others, but by exerting military serious and qualitative pressure by Moscow and Damascus on the areas of the military presence of Al Nusra and the armed groups, and bearing the media pressures, the diplomatic escalation and the response to the threat by threat, till De Mistura comes and takes his friends in Al Nusra front to outside this area and thus from one area to another till the contents of the understanding which the Americans have suspended its implementation are achieved, but they will implement it at the hands of their envoy the friend of Al Nusra.
Translated by Lina Shehadeh,