On Tuesday, Saudi Foreign Minister Adel Jubeir said Riyadh was ready to deploy its troops to Syria upon US request. President Donald Trump has repeatedly expressed an interest in pulling US troops out of Syria. In fact, Trump made the suggestion shortly before the alleged chemical attack on April 7 in Douma which the United States, France, and the United Kingdom responded to with airstrikes a week later.
"On the overall course of the war, the strikes will do nothing to change the Syrian government’s path to victory," Jatras said on Wednesday. "That’s why another false flag provocation — and another bigger strike — is almost certain. We’re not out of the woods yet."
"With regard to the strikes themselves, it’s very hard to know in terms of the wildly divergent claims from Washington and Moscow about the number of US missiles that were shot down," he said.
US strikes effectively turned the United States into air support for terrorists on the ground including the Islamic State (banned in Russia). The strikes were also suspicious in light of a coming probe by the Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW).
"Why was the strike launched a day before OPCW experts arrived in Syria? For that very reason. The Russian accusation against the United Kingdom and its cat’s paw the so-called ‘White Helmets’ was spot on," Jatras said.
With respect to Russia blaming the UK for staging the chemical attack in Duma Jatras said that, to his knowledge, "no country has so directly accused another of such calculated, malicious deception with the purpose of triggering what could turn into a major war."
If the UK was involved in deliberate deception in falsely accusing Syria and Russia of using chemical weapons when they had not, such actions were extremely dangerous and expressions of outright hostility, Jatras warned.
"If the phony claims of Russian election hacking are termed an ‘act of war’ by Western accusers, what are we to call Douma — but an act of war by the United Kingdom against the Russian Federation?" he asked.
"In my opinion, Moscow should take the initiative, for example indefinitely banning British flag carrier overflights of Russian territory," he said.
The Syrian government has strongly denied being behind the alleged chemical attack in Douma and stated that the missile strike was a "brutal" aggression. Russia’s defense ministry said that it had proof the UK staged the Douma attack to justify intervention.