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Spending Billions: War Syria

spending billions: Their slogans include, Leave Syria, think about us! and Death to Hezbollah! the Iranian-backed Lebanese militant group that has been a key instrument of Tehran in Syria's war, according to The Chronicle Herald. Syria saw its own anti-government protests in 2011. Although the protests have focused on economic issues, demonstrators have also voiced opposition to the government's policy of sending young Iranians to fight and die in Syria and spending billions of dollars on the military when they say the priority should be working to provide jobs in Iran and control the rising cost of living. They were met with a brutal crackdown by President Bashar Assad's security services, sending the country into civil war. Iran's theocratic leadership has cast the effort as a religious war for Shiite Islam, an epochal struggle to defend the shrine of the Prophet Muhammad's granddaughter in Damascus from Sunni jihadis, and to deal a crippling blow to what it says is a U.S.-Israeli conspiracy to destroy Syria. But as cracks appeared in Assad's military, with soldiers refusing to fire on protesters and defecting to the opposition, Iran and later Russia stepped in to support their ally. ( As reported in the news.