It’s understandable that some Syrian Kurdish fighters worry that Washington will “dump” them once they are no longer useful, and that Russia is feeding their fear to play up its own position. But anyone harboring such worries about the United States should take an equally hard look at Moscow’s past conduct and likely future objectives.
Russia had a long czarist and Soviet engagement with the Kurds. Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has long-standing experience with the Kurdish question, having served as Russia’s permanent representative to the United Nations Security Council for 10 years, including during the 2003 US invasion of Iraq and its immediate aftermath. Iraq’s Kurds have been the subject of high-profile international diplomacy since that time.