By Micah HalpernI've Been Thinking:
The popular Arabic paper published in London, Asharq al Aswat, is reporting that Russia is pulling its support from President Assad of Syria.
The paper sites a series of sources saying that 66 Russian have been flown out of Latakiah airport, bound for Moscow. They are reporting that the Russian Embassy now has far fewer staff and that Russian experts are no longer in the Syrian war room.
This move comes just as the US and Russia are more involved in talks about the future of Syria. The pull out by Russia means that the Syrian regime will have to work much harder to stay in place.
When you combine the gains made by ISIS and the rebels, you see that they are now in control of more than half of the provinces in Syria.
Assad only controls 8% of the oil resources in Syria. ISIS controls 80% and the rebels control 12%. That leaves Assad very short on cash - the Russian were helping the president support the battle.
With the handful of losses the Assad regime has suffered over the past week, the Russians pulling support may make it impossible for him to recover and swing the pendulum back in his direction.
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