JAFFA, Israel – The Iranians are bribing officers and commanders from the second and third tiers of the Syrian army in order to gain their loyalty, an Arab diplomatic official told Breitbart Jerusalem.
The official said that Quassem Suleimani (pictured), the notorious commander of the “Al Quds” Brigade of the Iranian Revolutionary Guards Corps, is directly involved in the operation, which the Iranians see as extremely important.
Iran is working hard to ensure that it will be a key player in any diplomatic solution to the Syrian civil war, especially the fate of the country’s embattled dictator, Bashar al-Assad. According to the official:
“Strengthened by the nuclear agreement, the Iranians managed to embarrass American allies in Yemen; strengthen Assad’s forces; continue sabotaging a resolution to the presidential crisis in Lebanon that would be acceptable to U.S. allies; and continue setting the tone for the war against ISIS in Iraq. To many, this makes [Iran] a legitimate partner in solving regional crises.”
After the troubled process of training a new military in Iraq, the official believes the West will not support dismantling the Syrian army at any stage. As a result, the Iranians want to preserve their support within the Syrian military. The official added:
“This does not mean the Iranians have given up on Assad, but they want to prepare themselves for any possible scenario, and the possibility of an American-Russian compromise that will sacrifice Assad in exchange for protecting Russian interests in the country.”
The Iranians want to make certain that if they do not manage to sabotage such a compromise – which appears unlikely at the moment – they will ensure that their supporters remain in key positions in the Syrian military and government.
The official states, using reports on disputes within the Revolutionary Guard on Assad’s future, the Iranians are pressuring Syrian army officers to shift their loyalty to Iran.
In addition, the source stated that the moderate Arab countries, headed by the Gulf States, Saudi Arabia, and Qatar, are watching the Western countries’ shifting policies on keeping Assad in power – if only for a transitional period – and view this as another Iranian victory over the West, after the nuclear deal between Iran and the world powers.