The Atlantic

In Syria, Russia Falls Victim to Its Own Success

Moscow’s rogue client has destroyed the country’s ability to present itself as an indispensable arbiter in the conflict.
Source: Alexei Druzhinin/ RIA Novosti / Kremlin / Reuters

This morning, Moscow woke up to the news that the U.S. had hit an air base in Homs, Syria, in retaliation for Bashar al-Assad’s use of chemical weapons in Idlib province. This was accompanied by the usual protestations from the Kremlin, which complained that the U.S. had bypassed international law “under an invented pretext” and violated Syria’s sovereignty.

Maria Zakharova, the spokeswoman for the Russian Foreign Ministry, complained that the Trump administration made no efforts to verify who was behind the sarin gas attack and that, in striking Syria, the U.S. was attacking a country that has always fought “global terror” in order “to prove itself.” The Defense Ministry announced that the 2015 memorandum on deconfliction—worked out between Washington and

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