JD: There’s a report out of Moscow that they are pushing Israel to help speed up the exit from Syria by the United States; what do we know about that?
KT: Well a lot of things are happening on this front and it’s been developing steadily in recent weeks but this past week has been very busy. The Russians sent two emissaries to Jerusalem this week to meet with the Prime Minister and their message from Putin was that they wanted him to put pressure on the United States to abandon the US Marine’s base in al-Kanaa. And this is the transit line for Iran’s land the corridor to Lebanon and the Israeli border. So the Russians are basically carrying water for the Iranians saying to Israel help us get the Americans out of that air base so the Iranians can then take over.
JD: Netanyahu was pretty much upset when he heard the news that President Trump was announcing the exit of the US troops there in Syria. Israel in that same meeting with the Prime Minster meeting with those Russian envoys there in Jerusalem wanted Russia to push Iran out of Syria.
KT: Getting back to this interchange between Netanyahu and the Russians, with the Israeli’s have been asking the Russians for over a year to get Iran, to push Iranian forces 80 kilometers away from Israel’s border. The Russians have promised and promised and done nothing. That is really the one thing that the Israeli’s have consistently been asking the Russians to do. They need Moscow to get the Iranians to back off from the border and Russia cannot deliver that. So that is really a key and new weakness of the Russians. They do not have the power over their own ally Iran to get them to back away from the border. So this is the big development Russia does not have the power to get Iran to back off from the Israeli border in Syria.
JD: Ken Timmerman with the report that Russia has requested for Israel to help speed up the US exit from Syria but will not push Iran back from the Israeli border as requested.