How Russia Expedited Syria's Victory

Via Oriental Review,

On Monday, Vladimir Putin unexpectedly interrupted his journey to Egypt, stopping off at Russia’s Hmeymim airbase in Syria and announcing the windup of Russia’s most successful military campaign abroad.

Thousands of combat sorties have been flown, tens of thousands of terrorists and their infrastructure have been destroyed, and hundreds of Syrian cities and towns have been liberated. We have previously published accounts of how Russian pilots, special ops, marines, doctors, and diplomats spent two years helping the lawful president of Syria, Bashar al-Assad, hold his country together and rid it of terrorists.

Russia enters the conflict

By the fall of 2015, the war in Syria had already dragged on for four long years. The mass anti-government demonstrations that began in March 2011 had quickly escalated into skirmishes with the military. And terrorist factions immediately “hijacked” these popular protests. Soon, the leading role in the battle against the ruling regime was being played by extremists from the Islamic State, Jabhat Al Nusra, Al-Qaeda, and many factions within what has been called the “moderate opposition” – mainly in the Free Syrian Army that has been so championed by the West.

From the very beginning, Russia provided diplomatic support to Syria. Back in the spring of 2011, Vitaly Churkin, the late Permanent Representative of the Russian Federation to the UN, vetoed the draft Security Council resolutions being proposed by some Western and Arab countries that were anti-Syrian in nature.

In addition, Russia backed the government of Bashar al-Assad by supplying arms, military equipment, and ammunition, in addition to training officers and providing military advisers.

But as the terrorist organizations and forces of the “moderate opposition” continued to make territorial gains, it became clear that this support was not enough. The Syrian Arab Army was running out of steam. Huge losses, shortages of the most essential materials, plus low morale forced those soldiers loyal to Assad to cede more and more territory, retreating as far as the coastal province of Latakia and the city of Damascus. By September 2015, it looked like Syria’s leader had only a few weeks left in power.

Areas of control in Syria in September 2015

So that month, at the request of President Bashar al-Assad, Russia’s Federation Council approved Vladimir Putin’s decision to move Russian troops into Syria. On Sept. 30, a Russian military operation began in that country.

The composition of the Russian air fleet

The composition of the air fleet often changed in accordance with the tasks assigned to it. Based on the data at hand, at various times it included:

  • Up to ten multi-role Su-35S fighter jets
  • Up to four Su-27SMs
  • From 12-16 two-seater Su-30SM fighter jets
  • Up to 12 Su-34 fighter-bombers
  • Up to 30 Su-24M front-line bombers
  • Up to 12 Su-25SM close-support aircraft
  • Up to 15 multipurpose Mi-8 helicopters in various modifications
  • Up to 15 Mi-24 and Mi-35 attack helicopters
  • Up to five Ka-52 attack helicopters

Strikes were even launched against the terrorists’ base camps from inside the Russian Federation.

  • Six supersonic Tu-160 missile carriers
  • Five Tu-95MS strategic bombers
  • From 12-14 Tu-22M3 long-range bombers-missile carriers

The A-50 early warning and control aircraft, the Tu-214R, and the Il-20M1 radio reconnaissance plane coordinated air operations, carried out reconnaissance missions, and pinpointed targets for the strike formations.

Russian forces in Syria

Air and naval activities

Russian aviation really ran the show in Syria. Militant training camps, command posts, weapons and ammunition depots, oil fields, and convoys of gasoline tankers found themselves decimated by massive attacks launched from the Hmeymim airbase, the staging bases for air strikes, and the Admiral Kuznetsov aircraft carrier. Bombers, close-support aircraft, and fighter planes, taking advantage of their total mastery of the air, managed to destroy more than 100,000 different terrorist facilities. The first wave of the massive air strikes against IS came at the end of 2015. That was when Russian planes pulverized a buried IS command post, underground bunkers, and warehouses in the province of Hama.

During their high-profile mission to “seek and destroy” gasoline tankers, Su-34 fighter-bombers managed to sniff out approximately 500 tanker trucks carrying petroleum products, plus dozens of oil refineries, grinding them into the sand. That was a punch to the gut of the IS war chest, as its main source of income was the illegal sale of black gold.

In late 2015, the Syrian desert was rattled by the most powerful blow yet – strategic Tu-160 bombers, Tu-95MSs, and long-range Tu-22M3s dropped more than three dozen missiles and a multitude of bombs, destroying the command posts of IS detachments in the Idlib and Aleppo provinces, as well as training camps for suicide bombers. In the summer of 2016, long-range Tu-22M3 bombers took off from Hamadan Airbase in Iran and blew out their bomb bays over militant targets in Aleppo, Deir ez-Zor, and Idlib. Regular air sorties supported the Syrian operation from beginning to end.

In addition to aircraft, Russia also put its combat ships, submarines, and coastal missile systems to effective use in Syria. Some types of weapons got their first test under battle conditions. In November 2016, to be exact, the Russian military employed its Bastion coastal-defense missile systems to spectacularly obliterate a large warehouse belonging to the militants with the help of its Onyx anti-ship missiles.

In October 2015, the Russian Navy was responsible for a widely reported cruise-missile attack from the Caspian Sea that annihilated militant positions with an unprecedented show of strength. The Dagestan, a missile-armed frigate, and the Grad Sviyazhsk and Veliky Ustyug small missile patrol ships released an enormous swarm of Kalibr cruise missiles that flew over several countries to blow up more than a dozen targets in militant-controlled territory. In June 2017, the Russian Navy’s Admiral Essen and Admiral Grigorovich frigates, as well as its Krasnodar submarine, used Kalibr cruise missiles to inflict a powerful blow from the Mediterranean Sea against terrorist command posts and ammunition depots in Hama province.

The capture of Aleppo marked the final turning point for the government forces in Syria, after which it was possible to withdraw about half of the air formations from the Hmeymim airbase in May 2017 and send them home.

The makings of victory

Russian aircraft were able to administer continuous, nonstop strikes against targets belonging to terrorist groups in Syria. From the onset of the military operation until September 2017, over 30,000 sorties were flown and about 92,000 attacks on terrorists were carried out.

Russian planes bashed terrorists with the active support of the most elite force in the Russian military, the soldiers from the Special Operations Forces, who conducted reconnaissance missions, corrected the moves of aircraft and artillery, trained Syrian soldiers and officers, conducted raids deep into enemy territory, set up countless ambushes along the routes of terrorist convoys, and neutralized the leaders of outlaw gangs. The ships and airplanes of the Syrian Express had an important role to play, supplying weapons, armored vehicles, and ammunition to the embattled country. Russian doctors were responsible for true acts of heroism, treating the civilians and servicemen who had suffered injuries in the war.

And a huge role in the resolution of the Syrian crisis was played by the Russian diplomats who set in motion the negotiations in Astana. Those made it possible to establish the de-escalation zones in Syria that are still operating effectively today.

Syrian peace talks in Astana

But of course it was the Syrian people who won the real victory – the Russian military just helped to remind them that the enemy can be defeated even if it enjoys the unconditional support of the West.

What comes next

It was revealed in late November that the Russian forces currently stationed at the Hmeymim airbase near Latakia and the naval base in Tartus would remain there. Their presence will clear the path for Russia to fend off any threat in the Eastern Mediterranean and to thus ensure the strategic parity that guarantees long-term peace in this volatile region. While the Syrian peace process is under its way the situation in the country and around is very fragile. The key game players and war profiteers are still on the ground and they are not to leave the Syrian territory. So the primary goal is to prevent anybody from the “defeated party” to undermine the talks and to secure desperately needed reconstruction programs, renovation and stabilization of normal social, economic and political life in Syria.


new game SoDamnMad Fri, 12/15/2017 - 04:37 Permalink

so merika the great stood down? how many toyotas where blown up? hmmm, don't remember any news from the fake news networks reporting russia's success defeating terrorists that merika the great created and planted to over throw assad. oh my oh my the brainwash of merika the great. merika the great stood down so as to not be a losser to russia the bad...fuken joke this country has become. look to dc if you think i'm just a cynical fukhead.mitch, paul, nancy, and chuckyreal winners-NOT...

In reply to by SoDamnMad

fleur de lis Stuck on Zero Fri, 12/15/2017 - 12:36 Permalink

The DC Swamp control freak illness is getting worse.They did not learn from Syria, Libya, etc., and have simply targeted other places that they consider low hanging fruit.Now our brilliant UN Ambassador Nikki Haley is pushing for a war with Iran.Because Iraq and Afghanistan turned out so well.Haley knows nothing of Iranian history, yet she advocates war with an adversary she does not understand.And as for those photos -- is she so stupid that she does not know how many similar weapons are in the region?Does she know how many nuclear weapons are in Israel or do they get a complete pass?The Israelis are also idiots if they think that American and Iranian weapons will start flying and Israelis are safe.The Israelis are pushing for this war and they will get a taste of it whether they like it or not.Iran will not be a cakewalk like the other targets.Unlike the previous projects, the Iranians can fight back.If shooting starts the US will prevail in the end, but it will be a Pyrrhic victory.  

In reply to by Stuck on Zero

foxenburg not dead yet Fri, 12/15/2017 - 05:51 Permalink

And the Russian videos of ISIS oil tanker trucks by the hundred crawling back and forward to Turkey with oil. And it would appear that US satellites/reconnaisance could not pick this up. They just watched - yet still have the cheek to say that Russia didn't really fight ISIS - it was done by the US coalition. Putin destroyed these ISIS tankers and source of income within days of his air force getting to Syria. Surely there is no-one, in any country in the world, who hasn't seen through the Western bullshit regarding Syria?

In reply to by not dead yet

Son of Captain Nemo besnook Fri, 12/15/2017 - 09:33 Permalink

So true bes…

Unless "We the People" want to end it in a "blaze of glory" using non-conventional means, our government's defeats are epic and make Vietnam look like the biggest military success since the Gulf War and WWII!...

In reply to by besnook

SoDamnMad Fri, 12/15/2017 - 04:17 Permalink

"Tu-22M3 bombers took off from Hamadan Airbase in Iran and blew out their bomb bays over militant targets in Aleppo, Deir ez-Zor, and Idlib."Somebody's translator sucks.  What does, "blew out their bomb bays" mean?During the 2003 march to Baghdad, our smart weapons virtually went down the chimneys. I watched a lot of videoa where their smarts hit close to building but being of sufficient size did enough damage. I also read they used one of the US videos on Russian TV.  Many of their TU-160 videos are of iron dumb bombs dropped from higher altitudes. It just shows the bomb bay doors opening and 4 racks with 3 bombs in each stick dropping.  12 bombs maybe 250 kilos each. Not totally impressed.

Son of Captain Nemo any_mouse Fri, 12/15/2017 - 09:26 Permalink

"ZIONATO flaunts itself along Russia's borders.

Give the Zionists a show."

They already did!

They kicked the ever loving shit out of American, Israeli, British, Poles and Croates in the Donbass post-Maidan and are making fine potting soil around the Donbass airport (…)!...


In reply to by any_mouse

silverer SoDamnMad Fri, 12/15/2017 - 09:22 Permalink

Isn't that like "blowing out the competition"?  I'd be much more concerned about what CNN says, or actually, what they don't say.  The US drops more ordinance due to increased profits.  Very impressive, billed to your kids.  But to continue on, why was the US in Syria for YEARS and couldn't defeat ISIS with all those billions of dollars of fancy weapons you describe?  The US is a nation in a downward spiral.  It's military is no longer there for moral or lawful purposes.  It is being used by major US corporations to produce profits and illegally invade sovereign countries that never attacked the US, all billed to the US taxpayer.  Do you have any newsreel footage you can post of the invasion of the continental US by the armed forces of Syria?  You know, the footage that shows naval bombardment of the east coast cities and missiles from Syrian frigates hittting major targets and oil depots?  And all the Syrian soldiers pouring off the landing craft onto NJ beaches?   You have that footage someplace?  Please post it.

In reply to by SoDamnMad

africoman Fri, 12/15/2017 - 04:47 Permalink

Nicky: Missile debris 'proof' of Iran's UN violations poorly presented melodrama. Tylers I am here to see the article that piss of shit<<<Haley>>> bragged.Where is it?For this article yes I am all for Putin 2018!

eekastar Fri, 12/15/2017 - 04:51 Permalink

Brilliant how Putin turns withdrawal into victory. That's how you play the game Trump!And yes I know you've got hungry MIC mouths to feed, why don't you just smash their ugly teeth?

not dead yet Fri, 12/15/2017 - 04:57 Permalink

The early anti government demonstrations were not widespread or large and were mainly organized by outside forces bought and paid for by Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and the US. They also supplied jihadists to get the ball rolling as early on they took a page out of the Vickie Nuland playbook and had snipers fire on both sides and the western press blamed Assad. The press also failed to mention the large demonstrations supporting Assad. In the early days Assad forbade violence against the demonstators and his police and troops went around unarmed with plenty ending up dead as imported jihadists butchered them. Real experts claim 90% of those fighting Assad were imported jihadists. In Hillary's emails she pushed for the overthrow of Qaddafi in Libya with the hope Assad in Syria would get the message and step down. Libya was a sideshow, Syria was the real target. Ambassador Stevens died in Benghazi, he died from smoke inhallation as the intruders set fire to the compound, as he was working with the large CIA contingent there to run weapons and jihadists from Libya to Syria.The Russians had great success in Syria with what amounted to a token force. The Nobel Bomb Them to Pieces Prize winner Obombinater with the whole US military behind him claimed it would take decades to kill off ISIS. Then the Russians showed up and embarrassed the US effort. Before the Russians entered the fray most of the US bombs were dropped in the wastelands, or they claimed they couldn't find not targets bombs weren't dropped, as the US had no intention of destroying their ISIS creation. The Russian success forced the US into bombing ISIS for real. Until the Russians bombed the oil tankers the US never bombed them as Obama claimed he didn't want an environmental disaster. Right. When forced to bomb the tankers the US dropped leaflets to warn the drivers before they attacked. Not the Rooskies.Obama haters claim he let Stevens and the others die. Not so. Stevens and one other died shortly after the attack from smoke inhallation as their safe room was not sealed. It was Libyans who rescued Stevens and took him to the hospital. So much for the claim of the CIA coming to the rescue guns blazing. Hours later 2 others died shortly after they arrived at the CIA annex and the bad guys were waiting and dropped mortar shells on them. The POS movie 13 Hours, and Obama haters, convey the message that the attack went on 13 hours. Not. It was two attacks in 2 seperate locations hours apart. Quite a few Libyans helping the US died but the press ignores it.

R4Recision not dead yet Fri, 12/15/2017 - 06:40 Permalink

The book - Zero Footprint - by 'Simon Chase' and Ralph Pezzullo covers that pretty well.Mulholland Books.  Little, Brown and Company.   2016.There will be a bunch of misleading stuff in it as well - but it covers the Benghazi incident with credability.And specifically talks about the arms running to Syria.  Buying arms from Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb, and transporting them to Al Nusra (Al Qaeda in Syria).All arranged with US money and logistics... 

In reply to by not dead yet

BritBob Fri, 12/15/2017 - 05:03 Permalink

Ruskies can't be trusted to be honest brokers of peace.Russia tells Britain give back the Falklands before telling US what to do.RUSSIA has told Britain it should "clean its conscience" and give back the Falkland Islands before it criticises them over their involvement in Ukraine. Moscow's ambassador to the UN, Vitaly Churkin made the shocking remarks when responding to his British counterpart Matthew Rycroft at a UN security council meeting in New York. (Daily Express 4 Feb 2017) They forget that a lot of territory was 'taken' in the 19th century (much of a norm). That doesn't excuse their actions in the 21st century. Falkland Islands – The Usurpation (1 pg):

WTFUD shitshitshit Fri, 12/15/2017 - 06:33 Permalink

. . . and all done on an annual Russian Military Budget of $46 Billion, in comparison to Vichy DC's $700 Billion + ADD-ON'S ( likely taking that figure, judging by the BS non-transparent, can't find 44k of our Special Black-Ops, to over $1 Trillion smackeroonies ).

The US is the Gift that keeps on Giving.

Thanks for this early Christmas Gift Vlad. The Middle-East can sleep a lot more peacefully.

Over here in Blighty Limey-Land and the rest of Europe, we can all hunker-bunker down and prepare ourselves for the defeated/demoralized returning Jihadis who made it HOME, MISCHIEF.

Thanks UK Gubberment!

In reply to by shitshitshit

Jo A-S Crassus Fri, 12/15/2017 - 07:59 Permalink

Yes, we Brits lost in Afghanistan.  But, the reason was that the tasks given were above the capabilities of the numbers required.  UK had 9,500 troops at its peak.  Think about that, 9,500.  Total.  To provide frontline and backup.  Meanwhile, under Petraeus, 20,000 ADDITIONAL troops were sent (below what Petraeus actually wanted)  and that also failed.  So, don't slag the Brits down. I must point out that, in the period in 2007 under Brigadier Andrew MacKay, the Brits were actually, slowly, winning....  Then, of course, he was replaced because his tour finished......  And it was back to square one!

In reply to by Crassus

Jo A-S BritBob Fri, 12/15/2017 - 07:37 Permalink

I might be a Brit but I'm not supporting your anti-Russia stance.  Russia HAS sorted out (ish) Syria.  The British involvement there was against the legal government and should not have occurred.  Likewise in Libya.  I do agree on the Falklands bit.  The people there have indciated their preference to be British.  NFA required.

In reply to by BritBob

any_mouse Fri, 12/15/2017 - 05:20 Permalink

Similar to the Spanish Civil War, with the weapons and tactics of the next war live tested.

Difference is Zionists and Islamists attacking a secular national leader.