Expert: Turkey wants to destroy the relationship between Putin and the West
Turkey fears the increased cooperation between Russia and the West. Therefore, the Turkish military most likely planned to shoot down the Russian fighter jet, says a Danish military analyst to Ekstra Bladet.
The Russian plane that was shot down by two Turkish F-16 Fighting Falcon fighters in the air space over the border between Turkey and Syria on Tuesday, was in Syrian airspace when it was hit by missiles from the Turkish air force, says Russia.
The Turks claim otherwise and say the plane was shot down when it was in Turkish airspace.
But now, an unnamed US official says to Reuters that hot tracing from the Russian aircraft indicates that it was on the Syrian side of the border when it was hit by an air-to-air missile.
However, at the same time the official said that the Russian aircraft prior to the downing had violated Turkish airspace. For 17 seconds.
The new information that the Russian aircraft had left Turkish territory before it was hit, is certainly plausible, says military analyst at the Danish Defense Academy, John Riber Nordby.
- The plane was in Turkish airspace for about 17 seconds only. If they shot at it within that period, it had already left the territory before the missile hit the target.
The Russians have always claimed that the plane was in Syrian airspace when it was shot down, and subsequently the rhetoric from the Russians have been tough.
They have, among other things, called the Turks 'accomplices of terrorists', as well as calling the attack 'a stab in the back'.
Planned Turkish attack
The Turkish attack has put a temporary stop for the emerging cooperation between Russia and NATO countries, which French President Francois Hollande has tried to expand after Paris two weeks ago was the center of violent terrorist attacks by the Islamic State.
But closer cooperation between East and West regarding the mission in Syria and Iraq is not in Turkey's interest, and thus the Turks have probably just been waiting for an excuse to provoke the Russians, says the analysis from John Riber Nordby.
- Turkey is afraid of being left on the sideline if Russia and the West becomes too good friends. The Turks are afraid not to be involved in the future development of the region, when Syria's future at a time is to be defined.
- The Turks have therefore in all likelihood wondered how they could create a rift between East and West, and has managed that with the attack on the Russian aircraft.
Recently, French President Francois Hollande has traveled the world to find support for a greater effort in Syria.
He has visited the US president, held meetings with the British Prime Minister, and will soon travel to Russia to meet with Putin. But Syria's neighbor Turkey is not on the list.
It has angered Ankara.
- The Turks have chosen to prioritize themselves over the joint effort against the Islamic state. But the likelihood that the current crisis will damage the long-term fight against the Islamic state, I very much doubt. It is simply too important, and it is neither in Russia's or the West's interest to give it up, says John Riber Nordby.
The Russians share the perception that the Turks intentionally seek to destroy the relations between the nations.
- We have not heard an apology from the highest political level in Turkey. Nor have we heard proposals to repair the damage or promises to punish the perpetrators of this criminal act, says Vladimir Putin.
- You might get the impression that Turkey's leaders consciously controls the Russian-Turkish relations into a dead end, and that is regrettable, said the president.
The 28 NATO countries were following the attack on Tuesday gathered in an emergency meeting in Brussels to discuss the incident. There NATO called on member country Turkey to 'stay cool'.
NATO Secretary General, Jens Stoltenberg, in a written statement after the meeting also called for calm, and called it a serious situation.
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