A former Russian military leader who now is the chief of the Defense and Security Committee for the state Duma is warning that there is a high probability of a direct confrontation between the United States and Russia over Syria, says a report in Joseph Farah’s G2 Bulletin.

The comments, on Russian television, were captured by the Middle East Media Research Institute.

It was Gen. Vladimir Shamanov who was being interviewed on Russian television, 1 TV, on Oct. 17.

It was his first television interview in his capacity as the head of Russian legislative committee on the subjects of defense and security.

He further, MEMRI reported, “said that Iskander tactical ballistic missiles recently deployed in the Kaliningrad region are targeting American-European missile defense facilities.”

He was asked by the interviewer: “Given the American threats to use weapons against Syrian government forces, and the presence of Russian anti-aircraft defense systems in two bases, does this mean a direct Russian-American confrontation?”

Probably, he responded.

“Taking into account the recent tendency to exacerbate the crisis, the probability of (a direct confrontation) is higher. We have our own goals and commitments in (Syria), we are there by official invitation of the legitimate government and president.”

He continued: “We suggested to the Americans that we coordinate our efforts, but they categorically rejected this. This means that the exacerbation of the hysteria is deliberate, and leads to further escalation.”

Asked about the Iskander missiles being positioned near Kaliningrad, he said, “This is a highly effective weapon, which is in keeping with the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces Treaty.”

Asked about the potential for nuclear warheads to be installed on those missiles, he rejected even having that discussion.

“Let’s not talk about nuclear (warheads),” he said.

For the rest of this report, and more, please go to Joseph Farah’s G2 Bulletin.

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