Scratch that — they’re already here:
The Russian Air Force has deployed a powerful air group to Syria that includes 12 Su-24 and 12 Su-25 ground attack aircraft, satellite imagery from Airbus Defence & Space has confirmed. The Su-25s had arrived at the Syrian naval aviation base in Latakia by 20 September and the Su-24s were there by 21 September.
The aircraft supplement four Su-30 multirole fighters that were present in 15 September imagery of the Syrian base, which shares a runway with Bassel al-Assad International Airport and is home to the Syrian Arab Navy’s Mi-14P and Ka-28 helicopters.
Ground forces will take longer to arrive, not to mention building up the logistical train to keep them supplied.
But there’s no need for that powerful and air group unless Russia is serious about committing ground forces.