Syria Project

Russian Deployments at Al-Assad Airport in Syria - September 24, 2015

More Russian work at Al-Assad Airbase in Latakia, Syria. New images of multiple aircraft – both fixed and rotary wing.  Multiples of these: SU-30SM (multi-role fighter)/SU-24 (all-weather attack/interdictor)/SU-25 (close air support)/ HIND-24 (attack helo), and an IL-76 (strategic airlift). Images: AllSource Analysis

Syria 90 - Day Strategic Forecast: Jabhat Al - Nusra (JN)

Grand strategic objectives:
• Establish an Islamic Emirate in Syria that is a future component of the envisioned al-Qaeda Caliphate
• Unify the global jihadist movement
Strategic objectives:
• Destroy the Assad regime
• Transform Syrian society from secular nationalism to an Islamic theocracy
• Establish locally-accepted governance as a precursor to an eventual Islamic Emirate
• Build an army to protect the Islamic Emirate by partnering with Syrian rebel groups
• Resolve the fitna, or schism, with ISIS
• Counter U.S. influence in Syria

Syria 90 - Day Strategic Forecast: The Regime and Allies

Grand Strategic Objectives:
• [Syrian Regime] Preserve the rule of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad in a post-war Syria encompassing the entire pre-war Syrian state
• [Iran] Preserve a viable Syrian regime led by Syrian President Bashar al-Assad as a key member of the ‘Axis of Resistance’; achieve strategic positioning against Israel
• [Russia] Preserve the Syrian state – not necessarily Syrian President Bashar al-Assad – as a key foothold in the Middle East and an ally against terrorism
• [Hezbollah] Prevent the spread of the Syrian Civil War into Lebanese core terrain
Strategic Objectives:
• [Syrian Regime] Maintain Syrian territorial integrity through an ‘army in all corners’; consolidate Syrian civilian population in regime-held areas; bolster international and domestic legitimacy as ruler of Syria.
• [Iran] Position against Israel in southern Syria along the Golan Heights; preserve access to supply lines from Syria to Hezbollah in Lebanon; develop network of Syrian proxies to maintain Iranian influence if regime falls
• [Iran/Russia] Enable Syrian regime to defend core terrain along Syrian central corridor
• [Hezbollah] Secure Lebanese border region against incursion by militant groups

Russian Deployment in Syria: Putin’s Middle East Game Changer

Satellite imagery provided by AllSourceAnalysis confirms the recent arrival of Russian main battle tanks, armored personnel carriers, helicopters, and other military equipment at an airbase in Syria’s coastal Latakia province, indicating that Russia has deployed troops inside Syria. Concurrent military exercises inside Russia suggest that Russia may intend to deploy additional forces, possibly further inside Syria.