Each week, ValueWalk takes a look at potential conflicts around the world that have the potential to draw superpowers into the mix and kick off World War 3. ValueWalk is not war-mongering nor fear-mongering but rather looking at areas like North Korea, The Arctic, Taiwan or Syria where there exists a potential for a widespread conflict.
Syria could get uglier than it already is today
While that might be difficult to imagine given the death, destruction and displacement that the Syrian (civil) war has already brought to the country and the region, but it could get much worse with Russia and the United States operating with different agendas in a small country.
Already, Russia has threatened NATO-member Turkey following the downing of a Russian Su-24 bomber in the fall of 2015. Were Turkey to have been attacked by the Russians as they nearly threatened after the incident, the United States and other nations are treaty bound to protect Turkey.
But this is not the only way that things could go all sorts of “pear-shaped” in Syria.
Saudi Arabia could certainly be a “wild card” if they were to commit ground troops to Syria and presently the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia along with a number of Arab nations are conducting the largest military exercises ever seen in the region with troops from 20 nations participating in northern Saudi Arabia. As this is being written, about 350,000 soldiers, 20,000 tanks, 2,450 warplanes and 460 military helicopters are set to participate.
The Saudis haven’t been shy in telling the world that it was mulling the merits of a land invasion of Syria.
“Bashar al-Assad will leave – have no doubt about it,” Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Minister Adel al-Jubeir told CNN. “He will either leave by a political process or he will be removed by force.”
“I can tell you that there is some serious discussion going on with regards to looking at a ground component in Syria, because there has to be a possibility of taking and holding ground, that one cannot do from the air,” he continued.
“We are saying we will participate within the U.S.-led coalition, should this coalition decide to send ground troops into Syria, that we are prepared to send special forces with those troops.”
World War 3 if the Saudis send ground troops to Syria?
If Saudi Arabia, chose to march on Damascus and attempt to remove al-Assad, by force the world could be sent into a massive conflict all over the region. The potential for the U.S and Saudi Arabia among others finding themselves in a shooting war with Hezbollah, Iran and Russia is a real possibility.
Russia seems to view World War 3 has a done deal; they maintain they won’t start it but they wont start it but they won’t run from protecting their troops an their interest in Syria or elsewhere.
That said, Putin has made it very clear that this is the United States’ fault and views his country’s armed forces as the only way to stop American aggression.
Last year in a speech in Sochi, Russia he said:
“Russia will no longer play games with the United States and engage in back-room negotiations… Russia is prepared for serious agreements, but only if these agreements are conducive to collective security… All systems of global collective security now lie in ruins. There are no longer any international security guarantees at all and the party responsible for the destruction of global collective security is The United States of America…
…The builders of the New World Order have failed by having built a sand castle…Russia favors a conservative approach to introducing innovations into the social order, but is not opposed to investigating and discussing such innovations, to see if introducing any of them might be justified…
…Russia has no intention of building an empire of their own, but will not go fishing in the murky waters created by America’s ever-expanding “empire of chaos…
These are legitimately worrying remarks that give you the sense that World War 3, doesn’t just exist in the minds of military fiction writers.