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US playing ‘losing hand’ against Russia in Syria: Activist

“Russia has provided aid to Syria to defeat the armies backed by the US,” said Iosbaker

The United States is playing a “losing hand” against Russia in Syria, because the legitimate government of President Bashar al-Assad is not going to fall, says an American anti-war activist.

“Russia has provided aid to Syria to defeat the armies backed by the US,” said Joe Iosbaker, a leader of the United National Antiwar Coalition.

On Wednesday, Russia carried out its first airstrikes in Syria following a warning that the US should clear the skies in the Arab country.

“Russia was able to do this because… despite claims by the US and Western media the government of Bashar al-Assad is not about to fall,” he added.

“The government of Syria is a legitimate government. Syria has been invaded by foreign-backed armies. When nations are attacked by other countries, they have the right under international law to seek aid. They can seek aid from another country; so the aid being given to Syria by Russia is legal,” said the activist from Chicago.

He made the remarks in a phone interview with Press TV, when asked to comment on a statement by former US Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, who criticized President Barack Obama’s policy in Syria, saying he was "out-gamed" by Russia.

"Russia complicates things right now and Russia has out-gamed us once again,” Romney said at the Washington Ideas Forum on Wednesday.

Iosbaker argued that Romney and other Republicans are criticizing Obama “because he hasn’t won. They say he is not playing hard ball.”

“In fact it is the US plan to get rid of Assad that is failed. Russia was able to bring their aid in as as part of a regional alliance to play organized against ISIL that involves Russia, Iran, Iraq, and Syria,” he remarked.

“So the US is playing a losing hand. [Russian President Vladimir] Putin was dealt a better hand not because of his diplomatic genius, but because of the developments in the region.”

Iosbaker further said, “The US lost in Iraq. The US had to concede to the Iranians in the nuclear deal and now the US has failed to topple Assad.”

Russia’s military operations in Syria have raised concerns in Washington that they will target militant units trained and armed by the Pentagon and CIA, and bolster the Assad government.

US officials and media allege that the air raids have hit civilians and non-Daesh targets in the Arab country, a claim that Russian President Vladimir Putin has dismissed.

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