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Russia, get ready! America, fire!

UNITED STATES (OBSERVATORY) – “Prepare, Russia”: after the threat of US President Donald Trump to use missiles in Syria, the whole world is worried whether a military strike can be struck and when. The US president blames Syrian President Bashar Assad for allegedly using poison gas in the city of Duma.

Security experts warn against possible consequences of US actions. Even if Trump slightly retreated in “Twitter” (“I never said when an attack will occur”), the situation around Syria continues to be extremely tense. The New York Times reported that this time the Trump administration is contemplating the possibility of striking a more powerful blow in order to send a clear signal. But who does have firepower around Syria and in what quantity? Here is our review.

Land forces: Russia has an advantage, but it hardly matters

As the defender of the Syrian ruler Bashar Assad, Russia in the military plan is still extensively present in this country, engulfed in the civil war. The number of Russian servicemen in Syria ranges from 5 to 10 thousand people. The United States has only about 5,000 people in Iraq and Syria. This was reported in a conversation with the correspondent of the publication Focus, military expert Albert A. Stahel (Albert A. Stahel). Along with the two bases in Syria, Moscow has military advisers in this country that support the armed forces of Assad.

What does this mean for combat power?

Stachal states: “The number of soldiers does not matter. In case of confrontation, these ground forces play an insignificant role.”

Air Force: The Great Advantage of US


Stachal points to several US bases abroad, from which air strikes can be made on the Syrian territory.

Qatar : in this state of the Persian Gulf, the United States has one of the largest military bases in the Middle East. There are, in particular, F 16 fighters and ultra-long B-52 strategic bombers.

Diego Garcia : on this small island in the Indian Ocean is a joint base of Great Britain and the United States. Americans use it for military and intelligence purposes. According to military expert Saheliya, there are American heavy B-2 strategic bombers.

Cyprus : here the United Kingdom, one of the most important US allies in Syria, has two military bases. There are six GR.4 tornado combat aircraft deployed in Iraq.

Turkey : The US Air Force also uses the military base in Incirlik in southern Turkey as part of its military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan. It allegedly housed American F 22 fighters and even about 50 B61 atomic bombs.


Moscow has a naval base in the Syrian port city of Tartus and the Khmeimim air base in Latakia province in northwestern Syria. There are ready to use anti-aircraft missile systems such as the S-300 and S-400 to protect Russian bases. Each S-400 complex can be equipped with 32 missiles.

In addition, the Russian newspaper Vedomosti, citing several sources, for example, in the Russian Ministry of Defense, lists, among other things, Russia’s military complexes in Syria and its environs:

– eight Buk anti-aircraft missile systems with 128 missiles (one such missile was allegedly shot down in 2014 the passenger plane MN17 over Ukraine);

– cannon-missile short-range anti-aircraft complexes of the “Pantsir” type;

– Six Su-34 fighter-bombers.

There are also fighters. The newspaper “Vedomosti” says about 18 fighters of the Sukhoi Su-30 and Su-35 type. Military expert Stachel believes that 25 Russian combat aircraft may be in the area.

What does this mean for combat power?

“With the help of fighter-bombers, although Russia can bomb Aleppo or Eastern Gutu, this is not comparable to the combat power of the United States and its allies. In the air war, the Americans are strong, “says Stachael. Together with its allies, the United States can carry out raids on Syria from many sides. A great advantage of the United States is the multitude of military bases, while the Russians have only two in Syria. “Americans have only 157 interceptors and 354 fighter-bombers, which they can move to various military bases in a few hours.”

Naval forces: the US has the advantage, but the relative


The US has the largest fleet of aircraft carriers in the world. Currently, in the Mediterranean Sea is, in particular, the destroyer “Donald Cook”. It is known that it is equipped with cruise missiles of the Tomahawk type and arrived at a place from which its weapons could strike Syria. This warship still fired cruise missiles in Iraq in 2003. Military expert Stahl suggests, in addition, that in the Mediterranean there are several American submarines, which at any time can launch cruise missiles. How many? Unknown.

In addition, the United States is in the Mediterranean Sea with the aircraft carrier Harry Truman. This military compound is also accompanied at the present time by the German frigate Hessen. However, the Ministry of Defense in Berlin refuted the conjecture that this German frigate, because of the planned US military strike against Syria, is already on its way to the Mediterranean. As indicated, it is only a matter of “long-planned exercises”.


For Russia, the navy base in the Syrian port of Tartus is strategically important. This is the only naval base of Russia in the Mediterranean Sea. According to one newspaper report, Moscow has two frigates of type 11356 (class “Admiral Grigorovich”), equipped with 64 missiles, near Syria.

What does this mean for combat power?

“The combat power of the US naval forces is incredible,” says Stachael. However, the Air Force can be used much faster, since aircraft carriers take a long time to get closer to Syria. “Thus, the naval forces are unlikely to play any role at first, the declared movements serve, most likely, for intimidation. This will change only with the passage of time, when the fleets will really approach Syria,” says Stahel.