SPECIAL ANALYSIS -- USSR: PEACE IN GULF WAR MIXED BLESSING FOR MOSCOW; GETTING

Created: 8/23/1988

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National Intelligence Daily

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Special Analysis

in Quit War Mixed Blaaiirtg tor Moscow

Moscow ne* welcomed lhe Iran-Iraq caase-llre Put probably views Ihe prospect of peace with mixed fee/tops. The Soviets ere eager tor the US to reduce lit natal presence in the Persian Quit but probably are concerned Iran and Iraq will turn primarily to the Watt to reconstruct their economies. Soviet efforts to court Iran will be limited by economic constraints, uncertainties about Iranian policies, end relations with Iraq and the Gull ttetes.

Sovte: Govemmeni yesterday offeree to withdraw its naval lotces fern the Gull II "nonreglcrmr' states also withdraw their ships, ft aBo cased lot an international accord on Gulfuwaiti newspaper last weekoviet official as saying the USSR willegional security conference under UN auspices.

Removaig the rationale lor lhe US naval presence in the Gulf hasajor Soviet objective. Apart from lheecl military threat to the USSR. Moacow hue been concerned that the USooukl parlay Its escort role inlo an expansion of Is permanent basing privileges in lhe Gull. More broadly, the Soviets de noi want US forces to be viewed as conlributlng to settiemonts ot regional conllrots. sanianfl

Concern About Western Inroads

A reduced US naval presence msgfii. however, improve US-lranlan relations, which Moscow hopes to prevent. Soviet media nave higfiiigritail rarcent statements by US officials on prospects for Dfitter relations wiih Iran,oviet official hasapanese newspaper thai Washington anc^efiran are ilkely to move closer together in the postwar peroc*.|

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moeoow undoubtedly rea-ltes it^a!oor posrton to compete with tha Wni ir providing the ecorcrrtc aid van andeed for rebuilding tn soviets probacy* aso oekeve raq win be freer to diversify its sou'ces ot arms and krss constrained to mute its pomica! ctlfe'ancea with moscow, rts main arms

courting tehran

soviets probably wili not make any military wrr.milmenti to iran *nlll ihey believe (hatable to meet the intwice ot rvettern economic aid. the kremlinhe flrst monthsease-f'te TO alktw tome increase trarms salestot-lrantar relations In tne longer run. corrpetrttor iron western. I. and latin ameriran arm* ohers might prompt m* scveta lo major system such as thertmeh tehran has requested in tte past.tooly war not eel Urge amounts of moderr weapons to iran, however until ne potieal irtuatwr ir tehran is 'ersofvcd afteri oars the soviet* would amhtr notegime likefy to resume trying to spread islamic under-entelrsm whether oy rerrevrpgith iraq. increasing naterujl aid to afghan Insurgents, orscvaf ujs'ms

to assuage maqi anger over any arms sales to iran and lo keep baghdadai ally bygreatly drversl'yng lis weapons supplies, tne soviets almost certainly would provide weapons that mowed irao. to maintain military advantage over iran moscow may alto be flexible on iho renegotiation of iraq's nlitary debil

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