Anti-Imperialism/Foreign Policy

Keith Preston: US and Russia Clash Over War Against ISIS

Listen to the interview on Press TV.

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov voices skepticism about the sincerity of the US, as the leader of the so-called international anti-Daesh coalition, in the fight against the Takfiri militants in the Middle East.

In an interview with Russia’s Channel One TV on Sunday, Lavrov said Moscow has been informed by sources in the US-led coalition that there have been instances when Washington would refuse to authorize airstrikes on confirmed Daesh positions, adding that this raises questions about the US motives.

“I hope that I won’t fail anyone, saying that some of our colleagues from the coalition states say that they receive information where exactly, on which positions the [so-called] Islamic State (Daesh) troops are located, but the commander of the coalition [of course, from the US] doesn’t approve the strike,” he said.

“I could suspect that apart from the claimed purpose – fighting [the so-called] Islamic State – there is something else [as the aim] of the coalition,” he added.

Since late September 2014, the US and some of its Arab allies have been conducting airstrikes against Daesh militants inside Syria without any authorization from Damascus or a UN mandate. The airstrikes in Syria are an extension of the US-led aerial campaign against purported ISIL positions in Iraq, which started in August 2014.

The airstrikes have hit Syrian infrastructure and caused civilian deaths. This is while there have been many reports of the air raids sparing Daesh convoys.

In an interview with Press TV, chief editor and director of, Keith Preston, said Washington seeks to contain Daesh militants in Syria, rather than eliminate the terrorists.

“That would in turn put the US in conflict with Russia, because Russia, I believe would like to see ISIS (Daesh) completely wiped out,” Preston said.

He added that while Moscow is seeking “stability” in the region through support for “independent and autonomous” governments, “the US wants to have regimes in the Middle East that are going to function as client states or as puppet states for the US” and its regional allies, including Israel and Saudi Arabia.

According to Preston, Washington seeks to undermine independent governments in order “to dominate the trade in petroleum and other natural resources in the region.”

Leaving out Syria army ‘absurd’

Elsewhere, the Russian minister said that his country would continue to support Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in his fight against Daesh terrorists.

He said the idea of excluding Damascus from the anti-Daesh battle was “absurd,” adding that the Syrian army would be the “most effective military force on the ground.”

Lavrov said recently Moscow would continue helping Damascus in a move aimed at preventing a regime change scenario similar to the one in Libya from taking place in Syria.

The handout picture released by the Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA) shows Syrian President Bashar al-Assad greeting Syrian army soldiers during a visit in Daraya, southwestern of the capital Damascus, on August 1, 2013.

Russia says its support for the Syrian government in the fight against terrorism is no secret. A foreign-backed militancy broke out in Syria in 2011, claiming more than 240,000 lives so far.

Moscow has repeatedly called on the so-called anti-Daesh coalition to include Syria in its campaign since it was launched.

The US campaign against Daesh comes as Washington and a number of its allies have actively sought the ouster of Assad by backing different militants operating in Syria in recent years.

Crimes carried out by Daesh and other militant groups have forced millions of Syrians to flee their homes. More than four million Syrians have left the country, while 7.2 million others have become internally displaced.

1 reply »

  1. Even ISIS should be recognized as a rightful regime over all its voluntary victims but not as a regime over any of its involuntary victims. That could be done by recognizing all forms of ISIS which would not include any of the intolerant, murderous and enslaving actions of the present ISIS. Thus once could and should take the wind out of the sails of the present territorial, oppressive, murderous and enslaving, statist and territorialist ISIL.

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