The US president decided to send another 250 soldiers to Syria. However, the purpose of such deployment is unclear since Russian army was more efficient.
A legendary reporter Seymour Hersh discussed this topic in an interview.
AMY GOODMAN: Seymour Hersh, it’s great to have you back on Democracy Now! Congratulations on your book. Why don’t we start by talking about what President Obama announced in his speech in Germany today, just hours before this broadcast: increased troop presence in Syria. What does it mean?
SEYMOUR HERSH: First, happy anniversary. Glad you’re still around, kiddo.
GOODMAN: Thank you.
SEYMOUR HERSH: Well, one of the words he doesn’t mention is Russia. Look, I can’t begin to tell you what’s in his mind. It’s a little amazing at this stage he’s putting more forces in, but that’s — you know, that’s his prerogative, I guess, as president. Always makes good news. Nobody ever — nobody seems in this country ever to object too much when we put more people on the ground.
But the real winner in the last year or so of the war there has been the Russians. And the Russians — the bombing was much more effective.
If you remember, the president had said publicly, when Putin decided to put his air force hard at work there, he said it would be a quagmire, they wouldn’t be able to get out, it’s going to be, you know, schadenfreude — it would be like what happened to us in Afghanistan, and is happening to us, and certainly did happen to us in Vietnam. But they did it. They came in, and they did very well.
I will tell you right now, Russian special forces are in the fight against with the Syrian army, with Hezbollah, with the Iranian army, the Quds Force. And the Russians have done an awful lot to improve the Syrian army in the past year — retrained them, reoutfitted them, etc., etc., etc. It’s a much better army since the Russians came in. The fighting in Palmyra that the Syrian army and the Russian special forces did was much bloodier. ISIS fought to the death. It was a terrible toll on everybody, but it was a victory for the Syrian army. We know all these things. The Syrian army is much better. It’s probably going to — probably — we don’t know. I don’t know. Nobody knows. It will probably take Raqqa, the former capital city if you will, ad hoc capital city of . is on the run, particularly in Syria, not necessarily in Iraq.
And I just don’t understand what the president is doing, why he wants to engage more. But, you know, it’s not my call. I would also — I’ve been told there are many more forces in Iraq than we’re publicly announcing, including even some elements of one of our airborne divisions. What the hell? As usual, we don’t really know what the game plan is. I do not understand why he’s decided to jump into a war that was being run by — it’s being won right now by the Syrian army and its allies, including Russia. I just — I can just speculate that our anti-Putin, anti-Russian instinct in America continues apace. That’s all.