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Tuesday, November 24, 2015 12:42 PM

Turkey Shoots Down Russian Plane; Two Seconds; New Cold War; Circular Absurdity

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Theater of Absurd

The tangled web of friend-foe relationships in the Mideast has reached a new high point of circular absurdity.

  • The US and Turkey are fighting ISIS (allegedly), as is Russia and Iran.
  • Turkey just shot down a Russian plane on the Syrian-Turkey border.
  • Turkey freely buys oil from ISIS which gives ISIS the money needed buy weapons. 
  • The US and France are working with Russia to fight ISIS.
  • Syrian rebels, armed with US Anti-Tank missiles just shot down a Russian helicopter.
  • The US backs alleged "moderate" Al Qaeda rebels seeking to overthrow Syrian president Assad.
  • ISIS also seeks to overthrow Assad.

Turkey Shoots Down Russian Plane

The Financial Times reports Turkey Shoots Down Russian Fighter Jet on Syrian Border.
Vladimir Putin has accused the Turkish government of providing financial and military support to Isis, in a furious response to the downing of a Russian fighter jet near the Syria-Turkey border.

Turkey said it shot down the Russian Sukhoi Su-24 on Tuesday morning after it violated Turkish airspace, escalating tensions between international powers with competing aims in war-torn Syria.

Mr Putin warned that the “tragic incident” will bring “serious consequences” for relations between the two countries, and alleged that Turkey had helped bankroll Isis through oil sales.

Turkey has disputed Moscow’s version of events. A government official said the crew was given “repeated warnings”, beginning from when the jet came within 15km of the Turkish border.

A special meeting of Nato’s North Atlantic Council was called for later on Tuesday at Turkey’s request, prompting further anger in Moscow.

“Instead of immediately getting in contact with us, the Turkish side immediately turned to their partners with Nato to discuss this incident, as if it was us who downed a Turkish jet and not vice versa,” said Mr Putin.

“Do they want to put Nato at Isis’s service?”

Alexei Pushkov, chairman of the foreign affairs committee of Russia’s lower house, tweeted that Turkey’s economic losses as a result of the deterioration of relations with Moscow would “exceed tenfold the profits of those who have established a profitable oil business with Isis”.

Turkish media and local activists said the Russian jet came down in Yamadi on the Turkish-Syrian border. However the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a UK-based activist group, put the crash site in the Jabal Turkman area of northern Latakia.

Earlier, several parts of the rural northern Latakia region were being shelled from the air during clashes involving regime forces and loyalist militia on one side and rebels and Islamist divisions on the other.
Where is Latakia?

Latakia is the principal port city of Syria, as well as the capital of the Latakia Governorate. Thus, the Russian plane was over Syria, not Turkey when it was shot down.

Two Seconds

US officials told NBC "They were in Turkish airspace only 2 to 3 seconds, a matter of seconds" before the Turkish F-16s attacked.
A U.S. military spokesperson in Baghdad backed the Turkish claim that they warned the Russian pilots they were in Turkish airspace before shooting down the aircraft.

"I can confirm that, yes," Col. Steve Warren told a briefing but could not say whether the incursion was deliberate.

He added that the U.S. did not observe the shoot down, but heard what transpired because the aircraft were operating on open channels.

A spokesman for the rebels in the area told NBC News that some of its fighters had opened fire on the pilots as they fell to the ground, killing one of them. The body was being held by the rebels, said the commander Jahid Ahmed, who added that he had no information on the second pilot.

Ian Shields, a professor of international relations at Anglia Ruskin University, warned the Turkish downing of the Russian warplane has the potential to spark a new Cold War.
Rebels Down Russian Helicopter with US Supplied Anti-Tank Missile

As part of the circular absurdity, ZeroHedge reports Syrian Rebels Destroy Russian Helicopter With US-Supplied Anti-Tank Missile.

"It would be bad enough if the US were supplying TOWs to anyone in Syria. But this is Washington and Riyadh handing anti-tank missiles to forces that are firing them at the Iranians who are operating under cover of Russian airstrikes [to fight ISIS]. Just to drive that home: the US is waging war against Iran and Russia with but one degree of separation," commented ZeroHedge.

Perpetual War

Does anyone recall the US took out Saddam Hussein on the false premise, Iraq was harboring Al Qaeda?

The statement Hussein was harboring Al Qaeda was not even true. But after the US took out Hussein and disbanded the Iraqi military, Al Qaeda and ISIS filled the military vacuum, fighting over Iraqi and Syrian territory.

Al Qaeda terrorists became our friends, and ISIS a much in demand enemy. In the case for perpetual war, we need friends to sell weapons to, and enemies to fight.

New Cold War

Ian Shields, a professor of international relations at Anglia Ruskin University, warned the Turkish downing of the Russian warplane has the potential to spark a new Cold War.

I suggest Cold Wars are so passé. No one wants one of those.

Not enough people were killed, not enough weapons were sold, and not enough new enemies were made in the cold war to keep the war machine well oiled.

Perpetual war is the solution, the bigger the better.

Citizens United for WWIII

Citizens United for WWIII, a think-tank led by US Senator John McCain and various presidential candidates of both parties, demands no less than a global hot war, preferably nuclear, including Russia and China.

In case you are wondering, I made up the name Citizens United for WWIII. Unfortunately, the idea is correct, even if the think-tank name does not exist.

Mike "Mish" Shedlock

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