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To this end, Institute for Policy Studies fellow Farrah Hassen described Bush’s Syria policy as “nutty” and blames his administration for isolating Damascus.

This approach takes a dangerously short view of history.

A Soviet naval vessel allegedly baring nuclear arms awaited his instructions in the Egyptian port of Alexandria. The Soviets, who supported the PLO and other leftist Muslim groups, openly criticized Syria’s intervention.

The Soviet newspaper Pravda stated that Syria harmed the Palestinian and Lebanese “national patriotic forces” and demanded that Syria withdraw its troops from Lebanon.

Gorbachev openly denounced Assad for his adventurism in Lebanon and called for a significant reduction in economic and military aid.

He also perceived Syria’s obsession with fighting Israel as a liability.

Soviet Premier Leonid Brezhnev threatened to send Soviet troops into the theater of war. President Richard Nixon reportedly increased the national security warning to DEFCON 3 and placed the U. Navy’s Sixth Fleet on high alert in the Mediterranean Sea. The move revealed fissures in the Syria-Soviet alliance.Optimism is growing inside the beltway that Syria can partner with the United States to achieve regional peace in the Middle East. Similar refrains are now heard outside the beltway. Hamilton, called for “unconditional” talks with Damascus.During their first meeting, Gorbachev told Assad that the Soviet Union would not support Syria’s efforts to achieve military parity with Israel.Gorbachev, who sought a diplomatic solution to the Arab-Israeli conflict, also scolded Assad for intervening in Lebanese and Palestinian affairs.

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