US President Barack Obama called the Russian army the worlds' second strongest army and noted that the Syrian opposition had no chances to defeat it.
"Russia is a major military. Obviously a bunch of rebels are not going to be able to compete with the hardware of the second-most powerful military in the world," Obama said in California at the Association of Southeast Asian Nations.
Obama's most recent statements in California raised quite a few eyebrows. In particular, the US President said that Russia's participation in the operation in Syria was a sign of weakness that ruins peace talks and ignores achievements of the Syrian army and Kurdish forces against ISIL terrorists.
"If somebody's strong, then you don't have to send in your army to prop up your ally. They have legitimacy in their country, and they are able to manage it themselves, and then you have good relations with them. You send in your army when the horse you're backing isn't effective," Obama said.
The above statement raises many questions as to why the United States sends its troops to other "strong" countries, such as Iraq, for example.
Noteworthy, Russia is on the top three on the global military power index by Global Firepower, even if the Russian nuclear arsenal is not taken into account.
The United States takes the lead in the ranking. The USA's defense spending exceeds defense spendings of most civilized countries of the world combined. Russia comes second, and China is ranked third.
The number of tanks in the Russian Army is twice as much as the number of tanks in the US Army - 15,398 vs. 8 848. Yet, Russia loses on the amount of aircraft - 3,547 vs. 13,444. The authors of the rating admitted that during President Putin's presidency, Russia has dramatically strengthened its army having upgraded military hardware, training and equipment.
The list continues with India. The UK comes first among European countries. France, Germany and turkey are in the top ten.
Read article on the Russian version of Pravda.Ru
Negotiations are underway on the use of airfields in Cuba, Venezuela and Algeria. South Africa, Syria and Egypt are likely to join the list