The entry of Russia into the mess in Syria reminds me of the Spanish Civil War of 1936-1939. The Nationalists finally beat the Republicans, but both sides benefited from outside help.
The Republicans were helped by Russia with airplanes and tanks, while Mexico provided arms and ammunition. The Nationalists had the better deal. Germany provided the new Messerschmitt BF109, along with German pilots with the latest tanks and bombers. Italy provided aircraft, tanks and munitions. Spain became the battleground to test the latest equipment and Germany perfected the blitzkreig tactics so successfully used in World War II.
Let us hope the apparent accidental impact of four guided missles in Iran leads to peaceful discussion and not World War III.
Russell W. Stevens