Syria: Russia's Motives Behind Military Build-Up

US officials say they expect Russia to launch combat operations against rebels in Syria "very soon," following reports of a massive airlift of ammunition, Russian heavy armour and anti-aircraft missiles to back up the Damascus regime.
The Pentagon has now tracked 15 flights of Russian Antonov-124 "Condor" flights into Syria and has seen two more Russian ships offload military cargo - including half a dozen tanks - according to the latest intelligence, a defence official told Fox News.

Russian T-90 tanks have been seen by independent observers on the perimeter of Latakia airport on the Mediterranean coast, not far from the Russian naval base at Tartous.
Last weekend two Russian naval tank transport ships were seen docking in Tartous, and Latakia airport has been extended and re-surfaced.
The drastic increase in Russian support for the Syrian regime could be seen as an attempt to prevent it collapsing under a successful rebel onslaught by the Army of Islam, the Jaish al Islam, which is not associated with Islamic State.

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