Ninety-six (96) local, regional, and international organizations and entities (prime actors) were identified by their peers as influential in the life of Syria. In the chart below, the left column ranks the prime actors from most influential in shaping the life in Syria (Russia) to the least influential (Relief International).
The chart also shows the classification of prime actors into five stances indicating the actor's support and contribution to inclusive nationalism for Syria, starting from the most committed (Core) to the least committed (Saboteur).
Amount of influence of Russia in the life of Syria, and the commitment of Russia to inclusive nationalism for Syria.
25 prime actors participated in the following:
- Determining the rank of Russia according to the amount of its influence on life in Syria. As shown in the chart below, Russia ranked 1st most influential prime actor.
- Assessing and classifying Russia according to its commitment to inclusive nationalism for Syria (also indicated in the same row by the colored rectangle). Of the 25 prime actors who participated in the assessments, more agreed that Russia falls under the category of 'Follower'. A prime actor assessed as Follower is seen as willing to build a sovereign, stable, inclusive, and developing Syria, but only when it serves its own interests.
In response to the question, “How is Russia important in the life of Syria?”
Round 3 participants stated (Nov. 2016 - Jul. 2017):
"Russia is backing the Assad regime with material support and strategic bombing of rebel forces. They have influence over Assad. They are on the UN Security Council and can block attempts to sanction Assad.” (239312)
"They have combatants on the ground. They are core support for the Assad regime. They contribute troops and intelligence.” (236592)
"They decided to intervene in Syria. They support the Assad regime with bombs, etc. more than any other ally. Any peace solution is frozen without them.” (231642)
"They have played a huge role in keeping Assad in power and keeping the war going. They are politically influential, though not as much as they might like. They called the shots six months ago, maybe not so much now.” (233121)
"They have the upper power right now. They make decisions. They are leading in both political and military arenas. They are the most powerful military in Syria. They have shifted everything to the government's favor.” (235781)
"They support the regime.” (236371)
"They are an ally to Syria. They provide arms and strategy. They support them on the ground and in the air.” (233531)
"They are the most important influence in Syria now. They decide whether there is war or peace. If they decided it was Assad's last day it would be.” (230713)
"They are the largest foreign presence in Syria. They have boots on the ground in one naval and two air bases.” (233911)
"They are one of the most dominant players in the conflict. They are attracting as many groups as possible to hold a conference for a resolution.” (233881)
"They are occupying Syria. When we were children we watched Tom and Jerry. Now it's Larov and Kerry. They are only playing games.” (231211)
"So long as they preserve their own interests, they don't care about inclusive nationalism.” (238631)
Round 2 participants stated (Aug. 2016 - Oct. 2017):
“Syria has always been a strategic partner with Russia. Syria provides Russia with access to the Mediterranean. Russia will want to keep the partnership. Russia is defending its national interest in Syria. It wants to keep Islamists out of power. They do not differentiate between moderate and extremists. They want to terminate all extremist movements.” (221641)
“Russia wants to demonstrate Russian authority to shape the global governance process and global conflict resolution. It could be more important by demonstrating a willingness to participate in a negotiated settlement.” (226591)
“Russia has had armed bases in Syria and are trying to protect that interest. They destroyed much of Syria with all their weapons, and killed thousands. It's still going on. They are the closest ally to the regime and ISIL. They will disappear with the regime.” (220291)
“Russia controls funding for Syrian government. Airstrikes change the map of control on the ground.” (221951)
Round 1 participants stated (Jan. 2016 - May 2016):
“They have an air force and 30,000 personnel. They veto Security Council resolutions.” (215261)
“They export arms to Syria, want control, and a veto right. The same criminals are in both countries.” (215261)