Turkey, the nation straddling Eastern Europe and Western Asia, has irked the US by striking a deal with Russia for acquiring S-400 Missiles! The NATO member state’s decision has shocked the US, which has urged Turkey to snap the deal as soon as possible! In a statement, Washington DC has stated that Ankara would have to pay a heavy price, if the latter ignored the advice. The Donald Trump Administration has also mentioned that the US might reconsider its decision to supply F-35 fighter jets to Turkey.
However, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan is not ready to accept the US’ advice. In Ankara, the President recently said that each and every country enjoys the sovereign right to protect itself. He made it clear that Turkey signed the deal in order to strengthen its security…
India, too, acquires S-400 Missiles from Russia
NATO, the Intergovernmental Military Alliance between 29 North American and European countries, also expressed serious concern over Turkey’s move. The alliance stressed that President Erdoğan made such a move in order to allow Kremlin to increase its influence in Europe… however, the Turkish President rejected the claim, insisting that the agreement would never affect NATO in any way. Instead, he claimed that the accord would also boost NATO’s Military Strength in the coming days!
President Erdoğan (R) with President Putin
The US has been pressurising Turkey for more than a year on not purchasing arms from Russia. Experts believe that Ankara’s decision to ignore Washington’s advice will certainly have a negative impact on bilateral ties. They also believe that the arms deal will affect the equation between the US and Turkey over the Syria issue. According to some of the Experts in Global Geopolitics, Turkey’s geographical location increases its importance as a strategic partner, as all the Major Powers know that they can easily expand their influence in the Middle East, as well as in Europe, with the help of Ankara. Turkey’s (regional) rivalry with Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Iran and Israel will also be a determining factor in that case!
Interestingly, the US has made a very calculative move, so far. Although US Secretary of State Michael Richard Pompeo has strongly criticised Turkey for signing the arms deal with Russia, President Trump is sympathetic towards his Turkish counterpart. The US President is of the opinion that his predecessor Barack Obama is responsible for this situation! He slammed former President Obama for treating President Erdoğan unfairly when the Turkish President wanted to purchase Patriot Anti-Aircraft Missile System from the US. “They wouldn’t let him buy the missile he wanted to buy, which was the Patriot. You have to treat people fairly. And I don’t think he was treated fairly,” stressed President Trump. He further said: “He’s (Erdoğan) paid a tremendous amount of money upfront to Lockheed. And now they’re saying he’s using the S-400 system, which is incompatible with our system, and if you use the S-400 system, Russia and other people can gain access to the genius of the F-35. So, it’s a mess. And honestly, it’s not really Erdoğan’s fault.”
The US President’s stand on this particular issue has surprised many American officials. A section of political experts has opined that President Trump may have adopted a different strategy to put Turkey under pressure. The Pentagon, however, has made no response. The US Department of Defence has issued a statement, stating that the S-400 Missiles will never match with F-35 fighter jets. The Pentagon has also made it clear that Turkey will not be allowed to use these two types of weapons simultaneously. The Defence Department still believes that Ankara will cancel the deal with Moscow!
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