On Friday night, the United States, France and the UK launched a unified offensive against Syrian targets alleged to be a part of the nation’s chemical weapons infrastructure. Russia, who has been providing direct military support to Bashar al Assad’s Syrian regime, claimed in the days preceding the attack that they would defend Syrian assets and intercept inbound ballistic missiles, and although they ultimately did neither, they have offered their support in the form of Russia’s chief foreign policy export: propaganda.
Although the United States and allies have released satellite images of their targets before and after the offensive clearly showing their destruction, Russia has nonetheless released official statements claiming that Syrian anti-air defenses had successfully “countered” the attack, even going so far as to claim that Syrian defense platforms dating back to the Soviet era had actually intercepted the vast majority of inbound missiles.
The Syrian air defence [sic] systems, which are primarily the USSR-made AD systems, have successfully countered the air and naval strikes,” The Russian Ministry of Defense wrote in a statement on Saturday.
“In total, 71 cruise missiles have been intercepted. The S-125, S-200, Buk, Kvadrat, and Osa Syrian AD systems were involved in repelling the attack.”