(PBS NewsHour) What do we know about Russia’s military involvement in Syria? Gwen Ifill speaks to Pavel Baev of the Peace Research Institute Oslo and Steven Simon of Dartmouth College. […]
GWEN IFILL: Pavel Baev, if Steven Simon is right in his inference that there is military support, if not there already, on the way, why now? What is it about are we hearing from Vladimir Putin that would suggest this is necessary?
PAVEL BAEV: I think, for Putin, the importance of now is very much related to his forthcoming speech in the U.N. General Assembly. He wants to make an impression. He wants to deliver a big initiative, and the core of that initiative is that it is time to join our efforts in the coalition against the ISIS and to make President Bashar al-Assad a part of the solution, because, without him, it’s only violent chaos. And so he needs to make Bashar al-Assad stronger, feel, look stronger than he really is. And he also needs, one, to make an impression that Russia is really preparing something serious. And impressions matter. Even a virtual military intervention could become a real political factor. […]
See the video © PBS NewsHour