1. confirms the public secret that the Russian government was behind the rout of the Ukrainian Army last August in exchange of which Moscow then quickly adopted the Minsk-dictated decommissioning of Novorosssiya, the Donetsk and Lugansk People's Republics and its key "principle" of returning the Russians of Donbass into the hands of the fascist dictatorship as the "only" and "unconditional" alternative, which General Vlasov would have fully endorsed.
2. the article also argues that the Russian government's Minsk treatment of Donbass (go back to the fascists) is in its design and ambition very similar to Russia's strategy in Syria: the goal is not a victory, but restoring or chasing after some vision of "balance," parity or compromise, which would allow the Russian elite to be received back as the partners of the West.
With respect to the first point, this is what Russia Beyond Headlines, the Russian government's info source for abroad says:
"It’s hardly a secret that Moscow simply did not allow the defeat of the predominantly Russian-speaking “republics.” – just as it has now saved Damascus from collapse at the last. ... Moscow most certainly provided the essential support that leveled the balance of power between the adversaries on the battlefield. ...In the Donbass conflict it was the Ukrainian army which Moscow sought to prevent from conquering the two self-proclaimed republics."On this note, the article also tries to lie, and not even little: "... in the Donbass ... Ukrainian citizens ... had no intentions either to set up a separate state or join the Russian Federation, [but they] rejected the legitimacy of the new parliament and government in Kiev and rebelled."
On the second point, which reveals the Kremlin's wish behind the Syrian sudden strategy, which is overriding all other principles, interests, or concerns is presented as follows; also note the new contribution of this Russian-government-paid source to the CIA-propaganda which tried and still tries to conceal al Qaeda brigades behind the adjective "moderate;" here the Russian Beyond Headlines article, you can find the stated hope to see "even a moderate wing of ISIS":
"Moscow ... has now saved Damascus from collapse at the last. Are there similarities between Moscow’s policy toward the Donbass and its actions in Syria? Do they reveal a certain pattern of strategic thinking? ... 'Moscow is seeking guarantees. ...Moscow wants to have a meaningful dialogue (with the West) on the basis of equality.' ... Earlier, the same model was applied by Moscow to the crisis in the Donbass, where Ukrainian citizens, who at the time had no intentions either to set up a separate state or join the Russian Federation, rejected the legitimacy of the new parliament and government in Kiev and rebelled. ... 'the only thing in common is the traditional maneuver aimed at reaching a balance of power, reaching parity on the military side as a precondition and stimulus to start negotiations. In Ukraine the inability to reach an end result by means of force produced the Minsk agreements. In Syria, the offensive by government troops could set the stage for talks with the ‘moderate’ opposition, with paramilitary units of other groups, and even with a moderate wing of ISIS which could emerge after the defeats on the battleground.'... Yet there are too many coincidences and similarities to dismiss them outright."