Politics 10:44 19/06/2019 Armenia

Turkey’s membership in NATO could be ending soon…

By Harut Sassounian

Publisher, The California Courier

Patrick Shanahan, Acting Defense Secretary of the United States, sent on June 6, 2019, a harsh letter to his counterpart, Hulusi Akar, Turkey’s Minister of Defense. Shanahan threatened to end Turkey’s participation in the most advanced US air force jet F-35 program and implement sanctions should Turkey persist in acquiring S-400 missiles from Russia next month. The Russian missiles are incompatible with NATO’s weapons system and risk to compromise the F-35 jets operations, thus jeopardizing U.S. national security.

Turkish President Erdogan has repeatedly rejected U.S. complaints and insisted on acquisition of the Russian missiles for which Turkey has signed a $2.5 billion loan agreement with Russia. Several Turkish military officers are already in Russia learning how to operate the new missiles. In the meantime, the United States has informed Turkey that Turkish pilots who had been training on the F-35 jets in the United States for several months have to depart from the country by July 31, 2019.

Acting Secretary of Defense Shanahan’s letter sent shock waves into Turkey’s foreign policy and security establishment as Turkey doesn’t yet know “how to reply,” a senior Turkish security source told Al-Monitor. In the meantime, Turkey had paid over a billion dollars to acquire 100 F-35 jets. Pres. Erdogan announced that he will demand the payment back from the United States. Furthermore, Turkey, as a partner in the F-35 program, has been producing certain parts of the jets which will no longer be sourced from Turkey.

Shanahan wrote to Turkey’s Defense Minister: “All actions taken on the F-35 are based on risks the S-400 presence in Turkey would have and they are separate from Russia-related Countering America's Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA) sanctions. There is strong bipartisan U.S. Congressional determination to see CAATSA sanctions imposed on Turkey if Turkey acquires the S-400. In addition to threatening the security of platforms like the F-35, Turkey's procurement of the S-400 will hinder your nation's ability to enhance or maintain cooperation with the United States and within NATO, lead to Turkish strategic and economic over-dependence on Russia, and undermine Turkey's very capable defense industry and ambitious economic development goals. Pursuing this path will cause a loss in jobs, gross domestic product, and international trade. President Trump committed to boost bilateral trade from $20 billion currently to more than $75 billion, however that may be challenging if the United States imposes CAATSA sanctions.”

On June 14, 2019, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu threatened that Turkey will retaliate to U.S. sanctions: “One country cannot give instructions to another on how to act. The US should abandon this behavior. Everyone is concerned about this. How far can it go? If the US takes steps against us, then we will be forced to take reciprocal steps,” he stated in an interview with NTV channel.

What are the next steps? Pres. Erdogan has learned from previous experiences that Pres. Trump does not always listen to his Cabinet members or to members of Congress. Erdogan has had several phone conversations to convince Trump to form a joint study group which will buy time for Turkey. In the meantime, naturally-occurring or artificially-created world events may change the present situation. The Presidents of Turkey and the United States are scheduled to meet on the sidelines of the G-20 Summit in Tokyo at the end of June. That would be Erdogan’s last chance to persuade Trump to change his decision on the Russian missile acquisition in July.

If unable to change Trump’s mind, Erdogan will go ahead and acquire the Russian missiles in order to avoid being humiliated by the United States. However, that would only be the beginning of a larger conflict! The United States would impose sanctions on Turkey, seriously damaging its economy. Erdogan could retaliate by banning NATO from using the Incirlik air base in Turkey. The United States would then relocate its jets to Jordan (as Germany has done) or Greece (a NATO member) or Cyprus.

This vicious cycle of punches and counter punches could end up by either Turkey withdrawing from NATO or NATO deciding to expel Turkey.

The removal of Turkey from NATO is a step that has been anticipated for a long time, ever since Erdogan has been acting contrary to the letter and spirit of the NATO agreement. Even though expelling Turkey from NATO is a serious decision fraught with major consequences, Erdogan is the cause by repeatedly violating Turkey’s commitments to NATO and ignoring all its warnings.

The obvious winner in this situation will be Russia which will succeed in weakening NATO by excluding Turkey — the country with the second largest military in NATO, while earning from the sale of the missiles desperately needed income for its collapsed economy.

However, Russia’s success may be short-lived. As soon as a geo-political conflict arises between Russia and Turkey, the newly-formed love-fest will fall apart, putting an end to Turkish acrobatic moves between East and West, and getting abandoned by both!



Source Panorama.am
Share |
Տեքստում սխալ կամ վրիպակ նկատելու դեպքում, ուղարկեք խմբագրին հաղորդագրություն` նշելով տվյալ սխալը, այնուհետև սեղմելով Ctrl-Enter:

Newsfeed

20:30
Guinness World Records titular Nikolay Madoyan to perform in Yerevan
The laureate of numerous international competitions and Guinness World Records titular violinist Nikolay Madoyan will perform in Yerevan with...
20:14
Volkswagen pauses $1.4 billion investment in Turkey over Syria invasion
Volkswagen has paused a planned $1.4 billion investment in Turkey as a result of the country's military offensive in Syria, CNN reported....
19:57
Grigory Hayrapetov released from post of Head of SPS
Armenian president Armen Sarkissian has signed a decree releasing Grigory Hayrapetov from the post of the Head of the State Protection Service....
19:27
Georgia’s PM pays tribute to Armenian Genocide victims in Yerevan
On an official visit to Armenia, Georgian Prime Minister  Giorgi Gakharia and his delegation on Tuesday visited Tsitsernakaberd Memorial...
19:00
Rock crumbled onto the roadway in Tavush province
Armenia’s ministry of emergency situations reports that on October 15, at 08:54 an emergency call was received to "911" service...
18:29
Italy asks UEFA to reconsider 2020 Champions League final in Turkey
Italy’s Sports Minister Vincenzo Spadafora has urged European football governing body UEFA to reconsider the decision to play next...
18:11
PM meets with Artsakh president in Yerevan
Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan held a meeting with Artsakh President Bako Sahakyan. “The meeting aims at sharing updates on...
18:04
24 students suffer food poisoning after meal in Artashat school canteen
24  students at Artashat School N 5 in Armenia were taken to hospital with symptoms of food poisoning after eating at the school canteen....
17:14
Armenian-Georgian relations should not be implicated by any foreign factors – PM
Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan received on Tuesday his Georgian counterpart  Giorgi Gakharia who is on an official visit to...
16:08
Japan typhoon death toll rises to 66
The death toll in the worst typhoon to hit Japan for decades climbed to 66 on Tuesday as rescuers slogged through mud and debris in an...
15:59
ARF-D member: Everyone understands that Artsakh has right to self-determination
The Armenian Revolutionary Federation-Dashnaktsutiun (ARF-D) has always voiced concerns over the statements from Armenia and Artsakh that could...
15:21
Chess: Armenia’s Karen Grigoryan wins int'l tournament in Portugal
Armenian grandmaster Karen Grigoryan has won the 10th Open Internacional Marques de Pombal held in Portugal. The Armenian player collected 7...
15:03
Court hearing in trial of Kocharyan, three other former top officials adjourned
The Yerevan Court of General Jurisdiction adjourned on Tuesday a hearing in the criminal case involving Armenia’s second President Robert...
14:41
Brazen thief steals $20,000 Dali artwork in San Francisco
A brazen thief stole a Salvador Dali etching valued at $20,000 from a San Francisco gallery, then walked off down the street with the work in...
14:35
UNICEF: 3% of children are underweight in Armenia
An alarmingly high number of children are suffering the consequences of poor diets and a food system that is failing them, UNICEF warned today...
13:59
Kurds in Armenia protest against Turkey’s military operation in Syria
Representatives of the Kurdish community in Armenia are staging a protest outside the U.S. Embassy in Yerevan to decry Turkey’s military...
13:31
Venice Commission hails judicial reforms proposed by Armenia’s Justice Ministry
The Venice Commission published on Monday a joint opinion on the proposed amendments to the Judicial Code of Armenia and the Judicial Reform...
12:33
Mass raids target Russian opposition leader Alexei Navalny
Russian investigators have raided opposition offices across the country in the latest move to increase pressure on the chief government critic...
12:19
Armenian PM hosts Minsk Group mediators
Armenian Prime Minister Nikol Pashinyan received on Tuesday OSCE Minsk Group Co-Chairs Igor Popov of Russia, Stéphane Visconti of France...
11:59
Former chief of Armenia’s oversight service denies hitting child with car
Davit Sanasaryan, the former head of Armenia’s State Oversight Service facing corruption charges, took to Facebook to refute as...
11:34
Yerevan preparing to celebrate its 2801st anniversary
Yerevan, the Armenian capital, is going to celebrate its 2801st anniversary on 19 October. This year the city day is set to be marked in all...
11:05
Uefa probes Turkish footballers' military salute in Euro 2020 qualifier
Europe's football governing body Uefa says it will investigate a military salute given by Turkish footballers after Everton star Cenk Tosun...
10:54
Aleppo named Syria’s cultural capital
The Syrian Ministry of Culture has declared Aleppo the cultural capital of Syria after a break of 13 years, Aleppo-based Kantsasar newspaper...
10:42
Armenian Church commemorates Holy Apostles
The Armenian Apostolic Church commemorates on Tuesday, October 15,  the Holy Apostles Anania, Matthias, Barnabas, Philip, John and Silas,...
10:32
Trump hits Turkey with sanctions, calls for ceasefire
US President Donald Trump on Monday imposed sanctions on Turkey over Ankara's military operation in northeast Syria, and called for an...
20:46
Byurakan observatory offers chance to observe Mercury transit across the disc of the Sun
On November 11, the planet Mercury will move across the disc of the Sun, Armenia’s Byurakan Astrophysical Observatory reports, adding the...
19:59
Armenia to host Days of Egyptian Culture
Days of Egyptian Culture will take place in Yerevan, capital of Armenia on October 15-18, the ministry of education, science, culture and sport...
19:08
Catalan protesters clash with police at Barcelona airport
Spain’s Supreme Court on Monday sentenced 12 prominent former Catalan politicians and activists to lengthy prison terms for their roles in...
18:38
Sanitek initiates arbitration proceedings against Armenia
Sanitek waste management company plans to submit the dispute with Yerevan Municipality to international arbitration. In statement released on...
17:31
Armenia secures three medals at World Sambo Championships
Armenia’s representatives won two silver and one bronze medal at the World Youth and Junior Sambo Championships held in Tashkent,...

Follow us and get updates!

Most popular articles

{"core.blocks.header.spell_message1":"Selected mistake: ","core.blocks.header.spell_message2":"Send a message about the mistake?"}