RT, Russia's English-language propaganda channel, has released the first footage of its newly constructed airbase at Latakia from where Moscow is conducting its Syrian airstrike campaign.
The hardware on display includes Su-34 "Fullback" strike fighters, part of the arsenal of over 50 planes and helicopters stationed there.
Cargo flights also supply the approximately 1,500 Russian soldiers stationed at the base.
War correspondents from pro-Kremlin media like Alexander Kots, below, and Dmitry Steshin of the popular Komsomolskaya Pravda tabloid are also in Syria, warning of the threat ISIS poses to Russia.
On Friday, Kots and Steshin wrote that Russia was preparing to support a Syrian operation aimed at recapturing the road between the cities of Hama and Homs, which would be the largest offensive from Bashar al-Assad's regime in some time.
"It'll be historic, for sure," they wrote.
Russia is tightly controlling the narrative around its operations, lashing out at reports in the Western press that its airstrikes are not actually targeting ISIS and claiming significant civilian casualties.
On Friday, the defense ministry published video of what it said included strikes on the city of Raqqa, ISIS' capital — marking the first time they have acknowledged attacking the group.
But there's an answer for everything — even when non-ISIS militant groups declared war on Russia in response. "Whatever, we'll fuck you up," tweeted Igor Korotchenko, a prominent ultranationalist military expert.
Max Seddon is a correspondent for BuzzFeed World based in Berlin. He has reported from Russia, Ukraine, Azerbaijan and across the ex-Soviet Union and Europe. His secure PGP fingerprint is 6642 80FB 4059 E3F7 BEBE 94A5 242A E424 92E0 7B71
Contact Max Seddon at email@example.com.
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