via Foreign Affairs.
This year, Moscow is celebrating the 45th anniversary of Operation Kavkaz, the Soviet military intervention on behalf of Egypt in the 1969–70 Israeli-Egyptian War of Attrition. The engagement was a key moment in the history of the Cold War. It caught Western intelligence by surprise, and it was the first—and only—time the Soviet military fought the Israeli Defense Forces. Operation Kavkaz saved Russia’s closest ally from regime change and protected Moscow’s strategic assets on Egyptian soil. The Soviet Union’s subsequent activism in the region marked the height of Moscow’s Cold War achievements in the Middle East.Register to get the rest....ITS QUITE COMPELLING...trust me, its a great read, but I won't post it here. I figure they won't get too mad if I send some traffic their way so I'm comfortable by giving this tidbit.
Once more, the Kremlin is increasingly assertive in the Middle East, and once more, it has surprised the West. Emboldened by its perceived success in addressing regional challenges and capitalizing on opportunities, it has gotten closer than ever to its key diplomatic objective: acquiring a regional status on par with Washington’s.
Seen from the Kremlin, Russia’s regional policy has been a series of remarkable triumphs. Moscow’s traditional goals are straightforward: to build a buffer against radical jihadists on its southern flank, to export arms and nuclear energy, to project power in the Middle East’s warm waters and beyond, to compete with the West, and, recently, to expand influence among and through regional Christian ....
The part of this that annoys me the most?
I'm an amateur student of history. I KNEW of the Russian intervention to save Egypt but failed to put it in the context of today's world.
This is a re-run of history...just the players have changed and the region is MUCH more chaotic.
This shouldn't give us confidence but should trouble us even more. Why? Because most of us aren't paid to read between the lines but the people that are seem to be constantly behind the power curve.
The Russians have pros and we have amateurs...not even good amateurs...