NBC’s Richard Engel speaks with Javad Zarif, Iran’s Foreign Minister, on a wide number of topics related to the United States’ relationship with Iran, including Trump’s travel ban, the Syrian crisis, ISIS, and the nuclear deal implemented during the Obama Administration.
Such is the Iranian influence in Iraq and Syria that US troops there would be at serious risk should the situation escalate beyond breaking point in Yemen. Short if invading Iran itself, there is not much anybody can do to leverage those asymmetric assets the Iranians now firmly hold in their hand. As for full-on invasion, a prospect that would be dear to the few the Neo-Cons who made it into the Trump administration, it would probably make “Operation Iraqi Freedom” look like the cakewalk Secretary of Defense Rumsfeld said it would be !
Russia continued to use Iranian airspace for operations in Syria, said the Secretary of the Supreme national security Council of Iran. Operations by Russian aircraft were not refueling, said the Secretary of the Supreme national security Council of Iran Ali Shamkhani told Fars News Agency that Iran has allowed Russia to use its airspace for operations in Syria.
The Russian Aerospace Forces will use Iran’s military infrastructure for operations against terrorists in Syria if Moscow and Tehran deem it necessary, Russian ambassador in the Islamic Republic Levan Dzhagaryan said in an interview with TASS.
“If the leadership of the two countries will consider it necessary to use the Iranian military infrastructure to combat terrorism in Syria or elsewhere, such steps will be taken,” the diplomat said.
The delegations of Russia, Turkey and Iran as well as United Nations representatives held their first meeting on Tuesday to discuss the establishment of a ceasefire implementation regime in Syria that was decided at the 23-24 January talks held in the Kazakh capital of Astana, a UN spokesperson in Geneva said.
The US will be unable to influence the Russia-Iran alliance directly, according to Vladimir Yevseyev, Deputy Director of the CIS Countries Institute. In his view, Washington can create problems indirectly, primarily by hampering the work of Russian businesses in Iran through new sanctions against Tehran or strengthening the existing ones. Discord in the Russia-Turkey-Iran troika in Syria is possible as well, and Moscow should prevent this from happening, the expert went on to say.
The Iraqi forces (ISF) have constantly talked about a frontal assault on west Mosul across the Tigris River, but now it might be done on two fronts. The Joint Operations Command announced that all preparations for west Mosul were completed. It said engineers would construct bridges to bring vehicles into west Mosul. Now new reports are emerging of another attack, which would not require coming under direct fire while crossing the Tigris.