The war in Syria 2.0: New victims on the Russian base of Khmeimim

News agency in Damascus reported about new victims among Russian military.

Once again, Idlib’s militants attacked the Russian-Syrian base of Khmeimim. Information about the incident is different. If you take the official version, then everything went, as always, smoothly. The Ministry of Defense of the Russian Federation reports that three rockets were fired from separatist-controlled territories. These were unguided rockets, and it so happened that they did not reach the desired target, but hit the nearby Ruwais Afif village. No particular damage was done. Of the wounded – four civilians. The base itself is in perfect order. In general, I did not even have to repel the attack.


But there are other versions of what happened. So, even before the official comment of the Russian Ministry of Defense, the Syrian news agency SANA, closely associated with the authorities of the SAR, reported what had happened. Referring to military sources, local journalists said that the attack led to “a large number of victims”, in addition, material damage is significant. One cannot but agree that these two versions are very different from each other. This is despite the fact that they come from allies. True, here, our Syrian colleagues do not specify who exactly died as a result of the shelling and to whom the damage was done. The locality or base of Khmeimim?


If you rummage through the social networks and sources of the Syrian separatists, located in the north-west of the country, then there is also no information that sheds light on these events. Some reports speak of great destruction at our base and of several deaths among the Russian military. Others write about the fact that nothing happened at all, and the explosion near Khmeimim was not caused by a terrorist attack, but by the mishandling of the Syrian Arab army fighters with ammunition – as if a shell detonated in some warehouse, and others exploded after it.


By the way, a few days ago a similar incident really happened, and as a result a couple of dozen Syrian soldiers died, but it was much farther south.


However, it is impossible to reject the probability of an attack. Not so long ago, the next meeting in the framework of the Astana format ended. Based on its results, it became clear that certain parties no longer intend to adhere to the Sochi agreement between Vladimir Putin and Recep Tayyip Erdogan. So, the Iranians made it known that the creation of a demilitarized zone was implied in Sochi. In fact, it does not exist; it was never managed to be created. The Turks failed to curb the militants and terrorists, and they continue to attack those who are considered enemies. Iranians and Russians on the list. Damascus has long since abandoned the freezing of the Idlib conflict and has been fighting since April, sometimes taking short breaks. Moscow, in words advocating for the preservation of the deal, in fact quite often bombed Hama and Idlib. Of course, in such circumstances, regular mutual attacks are not just possible, they are mandatory.


Nevertheless, we managed to communicate through social networks with one of the local residents, and he said that he had heard about the explosion, but did not hear the explosion. According to him, he is not the only one. And this leads some people to the idea that, in fact, this case is nothing but a dramatization. The fact is that Damascus recently announced the buildup of forces in the northwest in order to continue the operation to clean up Idlib from terrorists. In this regard, he needed a good justification. And in order to involve Russia in this matter, an incident was reported at the Khmeimim base. Like, for it now it seems that there is also an excuse to get involved in a major operation.

There is a place to be attacked almost every day in the vicinity of Khmeimim. The base itself is attacked less frequently, but stably several times a month. Now it’s hard to say whether the terrorists were deliberately trying to attack Khmeimim or, by accident, the shells that were fired simply landed nearby.

However, one can definitely say that this is not a re-enactment, but also not a massive attack on the Russian military. For Moscow, such justifications are not needed – it already conducts operations in Hama and Idlib. Now this happens very often – almost every day. Our experts are most concentrated on groups hostile to all — frankly terrorist. That is, those with whom even Turkey has very bad relations. Obtaining information about the whereabouts of the group of terrorists, the military prepares an operation and quickly fly out. In most cases, goals can be successfully eliminated.


As for the SANA agency, from time to time it is prone to exaggeration. The Russian military has met with this more than once. The latter case, apparently, is just from this series.