Nasrallah: Obama's Strategy Against ISIS Failed

Head of Hezbollah says U.S. failure over ISIS prompted Russian intervention in Syria.

John Davison and Mariam Karouny
Send in e-mailSend in e-mail
Hezbollah leader Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah in the southern suburb of Beirut, Lebanon, Aug. 2, 2013.
Hezbollah leader Sheikh Hassan Nasrallah in the southern suburb of Beirut, Lebanon, Aug. 2, 2013.Credit: AP
John Davison and Mariam Karouny

REUTERS - Lebanese Shi'ite group Hezbollah on Friday welcomed Russia's military buildup in Syria in support of common ally President Bashar Assad, saying it was the failure of a U.S.-led campaign against Islamic State that had forced Moscow's hand.

Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah said in an interview with the group's al-Manar TV that increased Russian support for Assad included highly advanced weapons systems, warplanes and helicopters.

An artist in Damascus puts the finishing touches on a painting of President Bashar Assad, right, and Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah.Credit: AP

He also confirmed that a localized ceasefire agreement had been struck in two areas of Syria, where Hezbollah is fighting alongside government forces against an array of insurgent groups including Islamic State and Al-Qaida.

Nasrallah, in a wide-ranging interview that was his first media appearance since Russia's recent military buildup hit headlines, said Washington's own campaign against ISIS had failed,

"(President Barack) Obama's strategy in confronting Daesh and terrorism has failed," he said, using an acronym for ISIS.

He said that relying solely on air strikes would not defeat the jihadists and that U.S. efforts to recruit and train so-called moderate Syrian rebels to fight on the ground were evidence of a "devastating failure" by its anti-ISS coalition.

It was this failure that had prompted Russia to step up military aid to Damascus, he said, after Moscow sent Assad hardware including fighter jets and personnel which it has described as "experts."

"We welcome any force which intervenes and supports the front in Syria, because through its participation, it will contribute to pushing away the major dangers that are threatening Syria and the region," Nasrallah said.

Russia insists Assad must be included in the international campaign against Islamic State, but the United States opposes this, saying the Syrian president is part of the problem.

Nasrallah said the military hardware sent by Moscow was "very advanced" and included warplanes, helicopters and precision missiles.



Automatic approval of subscriber comments.
From $1 for the first month

Already signed up? LOG IN


Charles Lindbergh addressing an America First Committee rally on October 3, 1941.

Ken Burns’ Brilliant ‘The U.S. and the Holocaust’ Has Only One Problem

The projected rise in sea level on a beach in Haifa over the next 30 years.

Facing Rapid Rise in Sea Levels, Israel Could Lose Large Parts of Its Coastline by 2050

Tal Dilian.

As Israel Reins in Its Cyberarms Industry, an Ex-intel Officer Is Building a New Empire

Queen Elizabeth II, King Charles III and a British synagogue.

How the Queen’s Death Changes British Jewry’s Most Distinctive Prayer

Newly appointed Israeli ambassador to Chile, Gil Artzyeli, poses for a group picture alongside Rabbi Yonatan Szewkis, Chilean deputy Helia Molina and Gerardo Gorodischer, during a religious ceremony in a synagogue in Vina del Mar, Chile last week.

Chile Community Leaders 'Horrified' by Treatment of Israeli Envoy

Queen Elizabeth attends a ceremony at Windsor Castle, in June 2021.

Over 120 Countries, but Never Israel: Queen Elizabeth II's Unofficial Boycott