One year on the direct Russian military intervention in Syria, the first signs of change in the Russian position appeared; a change that the opponents of the Syrian regime were counting on, and hoped to happen, since Russia took the role of a strong ally to the regime, to become its partner in war, and the touchstone that ensured its continuation and survival.
The new Turkish political moves, most notably the Russian-Turkish reconciliation of last summer, and its subsequent moves, preoccupied all the forces of the Syrian revolution with all their varieties, and all those interested in the Syrian situation, so that Turkey, which has engaged early in the Syrian conflict, adopted the Syrian revolutionary goals including the overthrow of the regime, and provided substantial support to the political and military revolution forces, also received on its territory millions of Syrian refugees. Thus, Turkey was deeply connected to what was happening in Syria, a country with whom it shared 900 kilometres of boarder, where "the Kurdish threat" was peeking out seeking to establish a separate entity on the ruins of the Syrian mess, represented by its historical enemy the PKK, and its Syrian arm the National Union Party PYD, in addition to the threat to its national security, posed by Iran's presence and its driven Shiite militias in the Syrian territory.
It is no secret that in the recent months Russia was aspiring to change its track in Syria through transitioning from military action to a political one, in an attempt to put an end to the open war, and release itself from a situation that was constantly dragging it into more military involvement, causing a dilemma that is deepening day after day. The new track Russia is aspiring to would impose their vision of a political solution to the Syrian issue, based on the new reality that it have managed to install through military intervention, and the change it brought forward in the power balance on the ground.
Originally, the tripartite meeting of Russia Iran and Turkey was scheduled for 27 December 2016, but Moscow's desire to pre-empt any European intervention, and take advantage of the latest events on the Syrian field to prepare for a deal with the administration of the new American president Donald Trump, brought the meeting a week forward, forcing the Syrian issue into a new level of international and regional rivalry.
Russia, Iran and Turkey seem to be in a race against time, to set an unchangeable reality, before the President-elect, Donald Trump, is handed his duties. Despite their different motives, they found themselves concluding an agreement among themselves for a common interest which is to deal with the harmful effects of the war in and around Syria,
It seems that Egypt, which has always been viewed by the Arabs as a pillar for the nation, and a wall that could be leaned on with confidence, having one of the most important geopolitical locations in the world, and great historical and demographic importance, is going through one of its weakest phases; weak in its potential, plagued with crisis, weak in its role in the region, or the world, and it is looking for a role, but with no clue on where to start and how to set a foot on the path towards such goal.
Many analysis and forecasts about the fate of the Syrian Revolutions came out the minute the defeat of the Syrian armed opposition factions surfaced, and their retreat to confine themselves in few neighbourhoods, crowded with civilians, after dominating the eastern part of Aleppo in northern Syria for a while
Recently, a very serious phenomenon has surfaced widely in this enflamed part of the world, namely the armed militias, which is an imminent threat to the whole region, not only because of the unspeakable massacres committed against civilians in the ravaged countries, neither because of their existential threat to the historically and politically significant concepts of the national state and the national army, but they also threaten the unity of the communities which have been already proven to be very fragile and fragmented by the Arab spring
For years, Syria proved to be the deadliest ground used by Iran to put pressure on the international community in its negotiations on the nuclear issue, and the Assad’s regime was one of the most important tools for that. It is only natural for Iran to cling to the regime and not give it up, especially after experiencing the effectiveness of this tool to keep the unrest going on in the region, and the Arab world in general.
Today the echo of gunfire is heard in three important cities in the region; Mosul, Aleppo and Raqqa. Their geographical and historical importance is the reason behind the hidden conflict for regional and international influence, which may lead into dangerous results, openning the doors for prolonged conflicts and wars, and new local and regional alignments, manipulating the prevailing geopolitics and balances of the last century, and rearranging them according to the victorious powers if possible.