Turkey is a NATO ally, but in the wake of its defence deals with Russia, Washington has decided to exclude Ankara. (File Photo)
After Trump administration denied offering F-35 stealth fighter jets to Turkey, Russia has offered Su-35 to the European nation. Although Turkey is a NATO ally, but in the wake of its defence deals with Russia, Washington has decided to exclude Ankara from the ‘F-35 program’. Parts of the S-400 air defence system were flown to the military air base of Turkey which made US apprehensive of former’s intention. Turkey had ordered more than 100 F-35s worth $1.4 billion.
To quote White House spokeswoman Stephanie Grisham, “F-35s cannot coexist with a Russian intelligence collection platform that will be used to learn about its advanced capabilities.”
Lambasting US’ ‘unfair’ decision, Turkish foreign ministry in a statement said, “This one-sided step neither complies with the spirit of alliance nor is it based on legitimate reasons.”
Earlier, Turkey had asked US to value Ankara-Washington relation ‘not just through words but through action...”
Offering Su-35 fighter aircraft to Turkey, CEO of the Russian State Corporation Rostec, Sergey Chemezov, said, "If our Turkish colleagues express a desire, we are ready to work out the deliveries of Su-35 fighter jets"
As per foreign affairs website, foreignpolicy.com, Russia not only has offered Su-35 but also looks set to give its most advanced Su-57 to Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s Turkey. Experts are of a view that If it comes down to a close-in dogfight, the Russian jets have that manoeuvrability to get the first kill. On the other hand, F-35 has been designed with state-of-the-art sensors and cutting-edge stealth which makes it lethal when it comes to sneak up on an opponent long before it knows it’s there.
Su-35 do not come with stealth technology and as per reports, the project is running behind schedule with many expectations being downgraded.
Along with this current deadlock in Washington-Ankara relations, both the nations have been opposed to each other as far tackling situation in Syria is concerned. Kurdish forces are US’ allies in the war-torn nation while Turkey views this group ‘foe’.