President Putin warned that any further strikes on Syria will “lead to chaos in International Relations”.
He made his remarks while speaking to his Iranian counterpart in a telephone conversation over the weekend, and his vague words have led to a flurry of speculation about what he was implying. There are of course whose “confirmation bias” and obsession with “World War III” led them to see in his words an ominous threat to respond with military force the next time that anything like this happens, but it’s extraordinarily unlikely that this is what the Russian leader had in mind because he could have otherwise done so right after the attack first happened or during any of the countless times that Israel bombed the country in the past two and a half years since his military’s been deployed to the Arab Republic. Instead, it’s much more probable that President Putin was speaking in general terms about regional stability and the international system as a whole.
For starters, Foreign Minister Lavrov had earlier warned right before the attack happened that it could “lead to new waves of migrants to Europe and a lot of other developments that aren’t at all needed, either by us or our European neighbors”, clearly implying that there might be another Migrant Crisis after any large-scale attack. This is because it could embolden Daesh and other terrorist groups to go on the offensive against the Syrian Arab Army (SAA), especially if they felt like they could rely on Western firepower to support them. Another aspect to keep in mind is that the staging of false flag chemical weapons attacks by the so-called “White Helmets” could also continue unabated if they came to believe that their foreign state sponsors will always commence airstrikes in response. The combination of government-organized NGOs (GONGOs), terrorists, chemical weapons false flags, and conventional state-led attacks is a recipe for disaster in any country.
Syria, though, isn’t just any “regular place” but is the prime proxy battleground at the moment in the New Cold War between the world’s unipolar and multipolar forces, and there’s always the ever-present “Damocles’ Sword” of a direct clash between these two “blocs” hanging over the head of everyone in the world, although it must be said that this apocalyptic hype has been grossly overblown by both sincerely concerned people and those who have a self-interested stake in manipulating them for whatever their reasons may be. In any case, the transition from unipolarity to multipolarity is evidently being preceded by a period of global chaos that Russia is doing its utmost to contain, but which Trump – by his Kraken-like nature – is embracing in order to bring about systemic change that he hopes can be guided in the direction of the US’ grand strategic interests.
President Putin is wise enough to know that Pandora’s Box can never be closed once it’s opened and that the opportunity for preventing that from happening passed a long time ago, but even if he’s unable to stop the world from descending further into chaos, he knows that he at least has an obligation to warn about it so that the global public can know who’s responsible for everything that happens afterwards.