Pentagon officials told reporters today that with Russian having withdrawn the bulk of its warplanes from Syria, they are continuing to launch artillery strikes against ISIS targets, particularly around Palmyra and Tadmur, which is the target of a Syrian offensive.
The officials seemed to be trying to present this as undercutting Russia’s pullout, though President Vladimir Putin openly talked yesterday about continuing to support the offensive around Palmyra, and never really ruled out continuing to back Syria in fights against ISIS.
Indeed, that Col. Ryder, the Centcom spokesman, admitted the US hadn’t seen a single Russian airstrike in Syria in the past week actually undercuts Pentagon claims Wednesday that they hadn’t seen any reduction in Russian military assets in Syria.
Russia has kept artillery and attack helicopters in Syria for now, and also left its S-400 air defense system in the country as a hedge against foreign attack. Putin added yesterday they could get their forces back into Syria in a matter of hours if they have to.
Last 5 posts by Jason Ditz
- Egypt Conducts Airstrikes in Sinai After Mosque Attack - November 24th, 2017
- Diplomats: Trump 'Fed Up' With Netanyahu Dismissing Peace Efforts - November 24th, 2017
- Observatory Estimates 340,000 Killed in Syrian War - November 24th, 2017
- Pentagon to Admit to 2,000 Troops in Syria, Number Likely Far Higher - November 24th, 2017
- Five Ukrainian Soldiers Killed in Fighting Near Restive Luhansk - November 24th, 2017