Russia has become ‘Iranian proxy’ – Putin’s weak response to Hamas attack evidence of plight of Russian foreign policy

Vladimir Putin’s response to the Hamas militant attack on Israel likely demonstrates his dependence on Iran, Abbas Gallyamov, a former speechwriter for Putin who now lives in Israel, told Radio NV on Oct. 12

Read also: Russia keeps trying to drag Belarus into its war on Ukraine, hopes for large-scale ground operation

The Russian dictator has taken an unfriendly stance toward Israel while being friendly to Hamas, which shows how much he has been marginalized, said Gallyanov.

“We suspect that Putin is active and doing what he wants. However, there seems to be a reason to believe that Putin has been significantly weakened. He has become so dependent on Iran that he can no longer pursue an independent Middle East policy. He used to pursue Russian interests by successfully balancing between Israel and Iran. But now, he has lost the ability to maintain that balance. Essentially, he has become an Iranian proxy.”

Read also: PACE recognizes Russia as dictatorship, recommends states cease all contacts with Putin

Putin’s possible involvement in the Hamas attack on Israel may have been a forced decision, he said.

“Iran decided to escalate for its own reasons. And Putin had no choice but to join in, because it’s crucial for Iran. Maybe it’s just that.”

Wagner Group mercenaries who left Belarus for Africa were involved in training and transferring combat experience to the Palestinian militant group Hamas, which attacked Israel on Oct. 7, the Ukrainian Defense Ministry’s National Resistance Center (NRC) said.

The key areas of training for Hamas units were assault training and the use of small unmanned aerial vehicles to drop explosives.

Read also: Hamas attack on Israel killed three Ukrainians, nine injured, six missing, hundreds stranded

Only the Russians, among Hamas’s allies, have experience in the use of drones with drop mechanisms, and it was the Wagner mercenaries who handed them over to Hamas militants during exercises in Africa, the NRC said.

Hamas’ use of drones to drop grenades on Israeli observation towers and the use of remote-controlled machine guns were signs of a well-prepared attack, said the Wall Street Journal. This deprived Israeli soldiers of at least part of the infrastructure for monitoring the border.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, addressing the NATO Parliamentary Assembly via video link on Oct. 9, drew parallels between the strategies employed by Hamas militants in their attacks on Israel and the tactics used by Russia in its full-scale war against Ukraine. The Ukrainian leader also highlighted the similarities between the tactics employed by Hamas militants and Russian invasion forces.

Read also: Wagner mercenaries involved in training Hamas militants for operations against Israel, Ukrainian military say

Ukrainian intelligence (HUR) knows that Russia supports the operations of the Hamas terrorist group against Israel, and Ukrainian intelligence believes that the Russian authorities were aware of Hamas militants preparing to attack Israel, said Zelenskyy. HUR also believes that Moscow supplied weapons to the militants, which the Russians captured during the war in Ukraine.

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