Some of the Russian troops reportedly being sent to Syria are from the same brigade that helped annex Crimea, according to a lengthy investigation conducted by Ruslan Leviev, a specialist in social-media intelligence.
The Kremlin has declined to comment, but, if true, “the deployment of an elite unit from Crimea, which inaugurated Russia’s standoff with the West, is an intriguing choice,” writes The Daily Beast’s Michael Weiss.
“Moscow has spent enormous resources moving troops into Crimea and eastern Ukraine over the past year. Moving even some of them out of the area to a different conflict zone, particularly one outside of Europe, gives the lie that sanctions and diplomatic isolation have forced the Kremlin into compromise,” Weiss writes.
“Rather, Russia appears ready and willing to take on multiple wars at once,” he adds.
If so, it will be squeezed on all sides. Whatever gains may not be worth it.