Russia and China have remained unusually quiet after the U.S. took off the gloves against Iran in recent days, but a veteran national security expert says they are watching closely.
Interviewed on American Family Radio, Frank Gaffney of the Center for Security Policy told show host Tim Wildmon it’s true the superpowers have been quiet but not to mistake their silence for a lack of interest in the Middle East.
“I think that the Russians and Chinese are very anxious to cultivate their strategic relationship with Iran,” says Gaffney. “By and large they both see this as an opportunity to exploit the divergence, shall we say, between the Unites States and Iran.”
In fact, Gaffney pointed out that Russia, China, and Iran recently conducted naval exercises together in the Indian Ocean.
After the killing of Quassem Suleimani, the notorious Iranian general, website Foreign Policy reported a “flurry of diplomatic activity” from Moscow to counterparts in Iran, China, and Turkey to condemn the general’s killing as a violation of international law.
The same story suggested that Russia’s president, Vladamir Putin, sees his “best card” in the Middle East as posing as a “mediator” for all sides.
Russia and China, Gaffney advised, would be very happy to see the United States driven from the Middle East and then fill that vacuum.
Gaffney says the U.S. didn't leave a lot of room for criticism for its actions against the Iranian general.
“Frankly I suspect they understand,” he told the radio program, “that the United States was operating entirely within its rights to take out this terrorist."