Russia and the Taming of the Israelis

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Written by Israel Shamir; Originally appeared at The Unz Review

Russia’s unexpected decision to supply Syria with S-300 surface-to-air missile systems and to integrate Syria’s air defence within the Russian command calls for a quick reassessment of our views. It turned out that Russia is able to learn and respond in an unanticipated way. Yes, in the immediate aftermath of the Il-20 downing, the Russian reaction had been weak. The Russians agreed with Israelis that the plane had been hit by a Syrian S-200 missile. They provided the Israeli military with an opportunity to offer and defend their version of events, while Putin spoke of a “tragic chain of events”, apparently exculpating his Israeli partner.

Russia and the Taming of the Israelis

I must admit I had thought that the Russians would accept the Israeli explanations, and the case would rest. This was the view of pro-Kremlin writers and bloggers, and they often know the mind of the Russian authorities. These guys and gals do not get their instructions directly from the Kremlin, nor do they have a consistent view of Russian interests nor an opinion of their own; usually they try to guess what the Kremlin will do next and build a defence line for it. If you watch them, you’ll get an idea of what the expectation.

They took a rather pro-Israeli line. Whoever called for a stronger response to the Israeli provocation, was called an “anti-Semite firebrand”. This is not as deadly a marker in Russia as it is in the West, but it still is not a great compliment, either. Some pro-Kremlin writers blamed the Syrians; so did the liberal opposition to Putin. Julia Latynina, the pet Russian writer of Western liberals, a Putin nemesis, a recipient of the Defender of Freedom Award, with hundreds of references in the Guardian and the New York Times, called the Syrians – “apes”. (The Russian anti-Putin liberals are racist beyond belief but they love Jews).

A pro-Kremlin English-language writer said that the Iranians (sic!) were to be blamed; perhaps they pushed the button and destroyed the Il. And Syrians surely were guilty as hell. He also ferociously attacked the experts who spoke of Israeli responsibility and called them “antisemites”. The chief editors of the Russian semi-official media apparently thought Putin wanted to forget about the whole business of the downed Il-20 as fast as possible. They promptly erased it from their agenda. Incredibly, on the next day the Russian media was practically free from any reference to the disaster. Only the hard old men of the opposition grumbled in their marginal online journals: “We are lost,” “Putin obeys his oligarchs,” “The Jewish lobby in Moscow won”, “Putin cares more of his Jewish friends than of the Russian soldiers”. But they were premature.

In Israel, the Ministry of Defence people rubbed their hands and said: We bombed all, we are bombing and we shall bomb as we find fit. They advised the Russians to blame Syria and accept the Israeli version of events. Israeli social networks rejoiced. But their joy was premature, too.

The first signal of something amiss was sent when the Russians refused to receive an Israeli high-level delegation in Moscow. Prime Minister Netanyahu and Defence Minister Lieberman proposed to fly to Moscow personally, but they were rebuffed. Only a military delegation led by the Israel Air Force Commander Maj. Gen. Amikam Norkin was allowed to come and present their version. It was found wanting. The Russian Ministry of Defence produced ample evidence that the Israelis knowingly caused the loss of the plane with all hands. Netanyahu had made a person-to-person call to President Putin, it was of no avail.

Apparently Putin was upset on a personal level with the Israeli attack. He is known for hating betrayal. He considered Netanyahu to be almost a personal friend, and the downing of the plane by this erstwhile friend grieved him a lot, so people close to the Kremlin intuit. There are less personal interpretations. In the same time the ruling (Putin’s) party United Russia suffered humiliating defeats in governors’ elections. 70% to 30% the incumbents were voted out, and representatives of strongly anti-Western coalition of Nationalists and Communists conquered those three districts. In the Armed Forces, the idea of letting bygones be bygones was rejected out of hand. The army demanded a stronger response.

Putin is the most pro-Western ruler Russia is likely to have; his successor will probably be more rigid to Western demands, while pro-Western elements (“liberals”) have a snowball-in-hell chance to come to power in Russia via the election booth. That’s why Putin has to watch his step to keep in line with his base, as any ruler does. He didn’t want to spoil relations with Israel, but freedom of action had to be denied to the Israeli Air Force.

There was a lull when the disaster of the downed plane completely disappeared from media, Russian or Western. It was not mentioned by the New York Times, it was not mentioned by the Russian newspapers. And after that, unexpectedly, the Russian Defence Minister Mr Shoygu made his announcement. Russia responded adequately, closing the sky over Syria, or at least over Western Syria, and activating its powerful GPS-jamming system off the Syrian coast. Israel has lost its right to bomb Syria at will.

The Russians said it will take them two weeks to deliver, install and make the system operative. I have heard that the system of up to eight S-300 had already been delivered by massive airlift a few days ago, with cargo planes landing in Syria every few minutes. Probably two weeks will be needed to install and activate the system.

Now in Israel the response was of two kinds. The hot heads said Israel is not worried by S-300; they know how to deal with it, and if necessary, Israeli commandos will come and sabotage the system just in time for a massive air attack by Israeli bombers. Sensible people said Israel should try to repair relations with the Russian military. The Russians did a lot of what the Israelis asked them for, including removal of Iranian forces from the vicinity of Israeli borders (rather, armistice lines). A thorough investigation of the air disaster may uncover the mistakes and convince the Russians that they aren’t likely to occur again.

Netanyahu sounded like he was trying to minimise the strife with the Russians. After meeting with President Trump in New York, he said that he came with specific requests “and I received everything I wanted from him [Trump]. Our goal is to preserve the connection with Russia and on the other hand to defend Israel’s security against these threats.”

So, for good or bad, Israel is not going to break relations with Russia, and Russia is not going to go further, beyond sealing Syria’s sky for Israeli raids. If Israeli leadership will keep its fingers away from Syria, things may cool down. Otherwise, the results will be quite unpredictable.

In Israel, there aren’t many people at the top, apart of Netanyahu and Lieberman, who cherish their country’s involvement with Russia. For Israelis, Putin is one of many unsavoury leaders from Idi Amin to Orban their country has to play ball with. Russia is not popular with ordinary Israelis who prefer America or Germany. A lot of Israelis will be pleased with breakup of this connection. Immediately after the Russian decision had been announced, Haaretz had made its feelings clear: “In recent years, Russia has been caught lying or spreading disinformation about its role in a number of incidents, the most recent being its involvement in the U.S. presidential elections, the poisoning of the former Russian agent Sergei Skripal and his daughter in Britain, and the invasion of Crimea and eastern Ukraine. So it’s hard to believe that anyone but Syria and Iran will adopt the Russian version of last week’s events.” This is not a way one’s partner is usually described.

More conspiratorially minded Israelis opined that beyond downing of the Il, there was an Air Force plot against Netanyahu and Lieberman who are unpopular within the top echelon of IDF. Others say it was an American Secret Service plot to undermine Russian-Israeli connection.

For otherwise, why did the Israelis do that? Were they just careless and brutal, as is their wont? They didn’t give a damn about the Russians, and considered them a lesser breed, whose life is of little importance. This is a possible reading, quite consistent with their general attitude to strangers considered to be children of a lesser God.

On the other hand, it is possible that the whole Israeli raid had been staged to down the reconnaissance plane and to leave the Russians without its real-time intelligence data. In 1967, the Israelis bombed and sunk the USS Liberty, an electronic spy ship, the then equivalent of Il-20, for they did not want to have foreign eyes and ears in the area. But then, there was an ongoing full-scale war between Israel and Egypt, and the USS Liberty had been attacked just before the planned Israeli invasion of the Syrian Golan Heights.

Could it be that Israelis expected an attack by France, England and the US upon Syria on that night, an attack that did not materialise thanks to the Russian-Turkish agreement on Idlib? There was a British plane and a French frigate in the vicinity, and a whole lot of American ships.

The agreement on Idlib was a very important event, though Il-20 displaced it out of our collective memory. Putin and Erdogan reached a working compromise, thus avoiding almost unavoidable large scale hostilities. The White Helmets had already prepared a film with staged chemical attack upon Syrian children, but the agreement had made the attack improbable in the first place. It is possible that the American coalition assault had been postponed in the last moment, when the Russian plane had been already downed.

However, all is well that ends well. Russian decision to create practically a no-fly zone is a good decision, good for all. It is good for Russians as they learned that their Commander-in-Chief can make strong decisions. It is good for Syria, as they will suffer less of the Israeli bombardments. And it is really good for Israel, as this naughty child, a spoiled brat, a darling of America had to be forbidden to bother neighbouring children. The automatic missile defence system will provide a threat of spanking. The kid had been told that he is not allowed to kill neighbours. With its excessive aggressiveness multiplied by impunity, Israel has been spoiled, as anybody would. With this block, Israel can still become a mensch, and for this chance, thank you, Russia.

Will Tel-Aviv use this chance? The US will try to frustrate the Russian taming of Israel. John Bolton and Mike Pompeo already declared that no one may interfere with Israel’s divine right to freely bomb Syria. Will the Israeli lobby in America be able to neutralise Moscow’s decision and unhinge Israeli soul once again? Will they convince Putin to postpone his decision like they did in April, and a few years ago? I do not think so.

We can congratulate the leadership of Russia on the consistent, justified and well-balanced decision that may yet tame the Jewish shrew.

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  • Barba_Papa

    Am spoiled brat princess which always throws a tamper tantrum when it doesn’t get what it wants and goes back running to Daddy Yankee to makes things right for her again. I like that analogy.

  • Rob

    There is a reaction for every action. If there were no Israeli terrorist attack on Syria then there would be no casualties in Russian and Syrian side. Putin take side with Israel instead of with Russian and Syrian nations.

    • Putin has soft spot for American “partners” and their “interests” and sometimes it seems he prefers “making deals” with West, which are breached on the second day by “partners” rather then protecting his own people and using justified force. Very sad. And frustrating.

    • acc_

      Knowing the real facts doesn’t mean you have the power to solve the problem. It gives you a starting point on how to solve it. There are more ways to win the war than just military action. I will explain my opinion with some supporting facts

      Your opponents has nuclear weapon. You don’t go challenging enemy’s military with hope of winning nuclear war (unlike stupid US)

      Putin has been switching from being chess strategy to checker’s. The facts on the ground are: Gazprom has already earned the right to transport output from Tamar floating gas platform, and they are also actively chasing stakes in Leviathan gas field development. Chinese has owned the right to operate Haifa port for next 25 years, effectively controlling one of Israel major shipping hub. Russia and China has been purchasing Israel’s drone technology to boost their own military capability

      What I believe Russia and China will do next is to tie Israel on the hip with Syrian by making energy pipeline from Israel through Syria and Iran and Turkey and forcing Israel to the tables to make a deal, leveraged by growing R&C commercial deals If this happens, Israel would find it counter-productive to bomb Syria.

      Israel knows the day of US dominance in Middle East is ending, and Russia and China are going to become dominant players in Middle East. R&C want less operating cost in Middle East. IMO, R&C Middle East general strategy is to tie those nations by the hips and forcing them to play nice. And their approach is very calculative and step by step like in a game of checkers.

  • Jesus

    The timing of the Judaic shrew.

  • Jim Bim

    “Israel can still become a mensch, and for this chance, thank you, Russia”.
    How is that, a brutal and ruthless Apartheid State, that kills Palestinian children for fun and brags about its killing, that destroys Palestinian Farmers crop, that bombs and demolish their houses, that is openly a racist society, that constantly attacks its neighbours, that gives a dam about international laws and treaty, that constantly threathens…….how can they still become humans

  • Unbelievable.
    Somebody in South Front woke up and fired Saker and his “wannabe” analysis.
    This is GOOD opinion based on facts and is pretty consistent with my theory of “weak Putin” and “pissed off” generals.
    The only problem is overestimating of S300 capabilities.
    It is only hardware and hardware will not stop Jews try bombimg raids over Syria.
    What actually can stop them is starting shooting them down every time they breach no fly zone and this is quite different story.
    Putin is so WEAK leader in Syria, that he will not allow Russian and Syria army do that.
    Not yet.
    More blood of Russian personell must be spilled in vain before something really happens.
    Putin is so WEAK….

    • Tudor Miron

      OK, now I see where you are coming from. A Jew author is giving us “facts” and Zo Fu is jumping all over screaming “GOOD opinion” :) I have some things to do, but later I will come back with a bit of dissecting of the above article. For now I will make it short. Those who try to weaken Putin’s support are working for US interests (to be precise US country level elite’s interests).

      • putinbeater

        shut up, kremlin rat!

        on this forum is democracy, not russian terror regime! i know, you would be glad a member of BCP, but you are too sstupid for this :DDD

      • Yes a whole bunch of paid for trolls spreading the meme that Putin is weak. The provocation didnt work so now they use personal attacks on Putin. That won’t work either. Dah!!!

    • Aen RaBeon

      Heard of any illegal Israeli incursion into Syria lately?

      • putinbeater

        ask this 31st of december

  • Jim Bim

    Looks like Zionism has a very deep hold in Russia. No matter how advanced Russia Military hardware is, Their ass licking to the West and Israel is stupidity beyond belief. They have not learned from the 90s.

    • Abramowich owns Putin.He and other Jew oligarchs helped Putin rebuild Russia after Yeltsin’s era disaster. Putin is apparently not able get through this and his decisions are pro-israeli biased.

  • Tudor Miron

    ” It turned out that Russia is able to learn and respond in an unanticipated way.”(c) Wow! what a bright Jew analist! He must be some sort of academic to get to this kind of conclusions.

    • putinbeater

      russia never learns. we saw after shooting down of russian plane by turks.

  • Carol Davidek-Waller

    The decision by Russia was not unexpected by those following Russian Israeli relations. In 2013 Russia held back from providing Syria with long range and more accurate defense at the request of Israel.
    Israel can be relied upon to violate all standards of decent human behavior, as it has in this case. For once, Israel will have to pay price for their intransigence.

  • Smaug

    All fine except the writer seems to be able to consider it possible that Israel has a superhuman ability to get the Syrians to commit friendly fire in order for the Il crash to be deliberate, but does not consider that it could have been purely an accident or something in between the two. Also the writer considers a possible Israeli motive to be racial superiority, which is ironically very racist and actually does not explain there actions in the least.

    • Allan Greedspoon

      It was not an accident. It also does not take superhuman ability to hide behind a much larger signature air plane to mask your own radar signature. You clearly have never lived in Israel and experienced the rampant apartheid there.

      • Smaug

        Aye, but the allegation is that Israel intended to down the Il from the beginning which would have not only required perfect timing to ensure flight paths crossed but mind control to get the Syrians to fire a rocket danger close to the Il.

        Why hasn’t anyone considered one of the middle options? The Israel pilot saw an opportunity and put the Il between him and the rocket assuming that the Syrians wouldn’t be foolush enough to fire. Alternatively, the whole thing may have been pure friendly fire with no wrongdoing on either part.

        • Sinbad2

          I doubt it was planned the pilot saw the opportunity to get Syria to kill some Russians, and it probably seemed the natural thing to do for him.
          You see the same attitude in some white South Africans, it’s not that they hate blacks, their lives are simply unimportant.

        • Allan Greedspoon

          There was no allegation that Israel intended to down the IL20. You have misread the article. Again, it was not friendly fire. It was a typical cheap shot Israeli opportunist event.

          • Smaug

            Dude, you insist it was deliberate even as you acknowledge there was no way the Israelis could know that the Syrians would take the shot or that the Il would be in the right place at the right time. If you absolutely must accuse them of something say human shield or willful negligence, but then I suppose that’s unsatisfactory for you because then you could not lobby people against Israel….

    • Humble Seeker

      Of course it was motivated by ‘racial superiority’! You have to understand that those filthy animals over there *ARE NOT* Hebrew, Semite or Israelites (hell they can barely be called human!) They are avid satanists and luciferians. And before you start crying about ‘antisemitism’ you should know that I am a Semite by blood (ironically the tribe of Judah, so I am actually a Jew by blood!) I am also a Torah observant Christian, which means I eat kosher, I don’t celebrate the satanic feasts of christmas (look up the god Yule… not a good dude!) or the spring fertility rite of Ishtar (easter). I celebrate the real Holy-days… Pesach – First fruits, Shavuot, and Yom Teru’ah – Sukkot, you Know the ones the Bible MANDATES us to celebrate (It also says very clearly NOT to celebrate christmas (Jer. 10) And half of the Old Test. is about NOT having anything to do with “the queen of heaven” (Isis, Ishtar, Easter, Ostara, and more recently ‘the mother mary’ [check out the Wikipedia page for Ēostre]) I am a jew in EVERY sense of the word, by blood and belief (I just believe Mashiach is coming BACK, they think He is yet to come) So no more crap about being racist, lucky for the entire world Zechariah 12 is about to come true and God will take the land from those wicked freakshows (along with a very, VERY hefty punishment) and give it to the House of David (IE Christians)… Revelation 2:9 “I know thy works, and tribulation, and poverty, (but thou art rich) and I know the blasphemy of them which say they are Jews, and are not, but are the synagogue of Satan” Revelation 3:9 “Behold, I will make them of the synagogue of Satan, which say they are Jews, and are not, but do lie; behold, I will make them to come and worship before thy feet, and to know that I have loved thee.”

      • Humble Seeker

        Jer. 10 “1-5 Hear ye the word which the LORD speaketh unto you, O house of Israel: 2 Thus saith the LORD, Learn not the way of the heathen, and be not dismayed at the signs of heaven; for the heathen are dismayed at them. 3 For the customs of the people are vain: for one cutteth a tree out of the forest, the work of the hands of the workman, with the axe. 4 They deck it with silver and with gold; they fasten it with nails and with hammers, that it move not. 5 They are upright as the palm tree, but speak not: they must needs be borne, because they cannot go. Be not afraid of them; for they cannot do evil, neither also is it in them to do good.”

        • Humble Seeker

          Zechariah 12 “1 The burden of the word of the Lord for Israel, saith the Lord,
          which stretcheth forth the heavens, and layeth the foundation of the
          earth, and formeth the spirit of man within him. 2 Behold, I will make Jerusalem a cup of trembling unto all the
          people round about, when they shall be in the siege both against Judah
          and against Jerusalem. 3 And in that day will I make Jerusalem a burdensome stone for
          all people: all that burden themselves with it shall be cut in pieces,
          though all the people of the earth be gathered together against it. 4 In that day, saith the Lord, I will smite every horse with
          astonishment, and his rider with madness: and I will open mine eyes upon
          the house of Judah, and will smite every horse of the people with
          blindness. 5 And the governors of Judah shall say in their heart, The
          inhabitants of Jerusalem shall be my strength in the Lord of hosts their
          God. 6 In that day will I make the governors of Judah like an hearth
          of fire among the wood, and like a torch of fire in a sheaf; and they
          shall devour all the people round about, on the right hand and on the
          left: and Jerusalem shall be inhabited again in her own place, even in
          Jerusalem. 7 The Lord also shall save the tents of Judah first, that the
          glory of the house of David and the glory of the inhabitants of
          Jerusalem do not magnify themselves against Judah. 8 In that day shall the Lord defend the inhabitants of
          Jerusalem; and he that is feeble among them at that day shall be as
          David; and the house of David shall be as God, as the angel of the Lord
          before them. 9 And it shall come to pass in that day, that I will seek to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem. 10 And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the
          inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications: and
          they shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for
          him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for
          him, as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn. 11 In that day shall there be a great mourning in Jerusalem, as the mourning of Hadadrimmon in the valley of Megiddon.12 And the land shall mourn, every family apart; the family of
          the house of David apart, and their wives apart; the family of the house
          of Nathan apart, and their wives apart; 13 The family of the house of Levi apart, and their wives apart; the family of Shimei apart, and their wives apart; 14 All the families that remain, every family apart, and their wives apart.

      • Smaug

        Skimming I find a white supremacist rant… I wonder why South Front puts up with this when even I don’t. Now muting you and goodbye.

    • Sinbad2

      Well be honest, Jews invented the concept of racial superiority, the religion is based on being superior to the goyim.

  • Aen RaBeon

    Yeah the bully did ran to daddy but there’s nothing he can do about it.

  • Donnie Brasco Brasco

    Liberty wasn’t sunk

  • Ma_Laoshi

    Many phrases “Russia did …”, “the Kremlin wants …”, “Putin changed his mind”. But isn’t a more plausible reading that there isn’t just one voice in Moscow, and that on this occasion, the military overruled Putin and the Zios? And about time too. Still, seeing is believing; all concerned better be ready when (not if) these air defenses will be tested.

    • Sinbad2

      Possible, the Pentagon has overruled Trump about many things.
      But Trump is a fool, Putin is an intelligent man, he wouldn’t put himself in a situation where the military would overrule him.

      • Ma_Laoshi

        Well, he just did: VVP called it all “a tragic chain of events”, while the MoD said there was a deliberate hit where IAF jets used the IL plane as a human shield. The MoD version stands. Whether they overruled him, or he changed his mind after discussing with them… I’m happy to leave the choice of polite words to the Kremlin fans. :-)

        Sure these things also happen in the US. Most blatantly when Obama sent Kerry to Moscow to discuss coordination and intel sharing, and the Pentagram kiboshed it by bombing Deir Ezzor.

        • It is both.

        • Crackpot Scrubber

          I think you forgot he said “it Looked Like” as in it was intended by Israel and friends to look like that .. and then fully endorsed the full MOD statement … it’s called putting your opponent off balance .. Now look at the Kikes crying and wailing …

  • putinbeater

    the correct word order:

    Israel and the Taming of the Russians