Global Independent Analytics
Seyit Aldogan
Seyit Aldogan

Location: Greece

Specialization: ISIS, Middle East, Globalization, Migrant crisis

The downing of the Russian fighter jet by the Turkish air force signifies a further deterioration of the situation...

...not only in the Middle East, but also in the wider area.

Turkish armed forces shot down a Russian military jet near the Turkish-Syrian border which, according to Ankara, had repeatedly violated its air space and ignored several warnings.

This development caused Russia's reaction. President Vladimir Putin described the incident as a '' stab in the back,'' committed by ''accomplices of terrorists'' and warned that this will have consequences since Russia would not let the matter drop. Not long ago, during the G20 summit in Antalya, Putin accused Turkey, among other countries, of funding ISIS by allowing it to smuggle oil through its territory.

But this incident does not come out of the blue. The Turkish foreign ministry last week summoned the Russian ambassador in order to warn him that there would be consequences if the Russian air force didn't stop bombing  their Turkmen ''brothers''. Turkmen are Sunni Muslim Syrians of Turkish descent, hostile to the regime who fight alongside ISIS and other Islamist rebel groups.

Russia's dynamic intervention in the region has changed the balance of power back in to an even playing field. Washington and its allies want to strengthen their ties with Turkey in order to be the determining factor in the geopolitics of the region.

It is common knowledge, though, that Turkey's policy on Syria, and on the Kurdish issue among others, is in conflict with Washington's  agenda. Ankara has played an instrumental role in exacerbating the conflict so far and the downing of the Russian fighter jet reveals its desire for further American involvement in the region. The Turkish government has strongly opposed the Russian intervention several times so far.

In the aftermath of this event, the downing is a well orchestrated Turkish provocation in order to drag NATO into a war for its own gain, an attempt to transfer the problem to the US, NATO and all the powers involved in the region. Right after the incident Turkey ordered consultations with NATO, the United Nations and related nations.  NATO called an emergency meeting of the North Atlantic Council for Tuesday afternoon. Therefore it is safe to say that Turkey is fomenting conflicts in an attempt to implicate everyone, especially the US and NATO.

Russia's intervention so far has brought important results since it has contained the ISIS' forces. That affects Turkey's strategy. Turkey had invested on ISIS in an attempt to impose itself as a regional hegemonic power capable of dominating the neighboring states militarily, economically and politically. Ankara's demand for the creation of a safety zone within the borders of Syria was rejected, but this provocation will reintroduce the issue to the agenda.

The US said that the American forces were not involved in the downing and that this is an issue between the Turkish and the Russian governments that will not affect the US-led coalition operations in Syria and Iraq. It can be reasonably assumed, though, that the issue of the formation of “safe zones” by the US coalition with the Kurds in Syria opposing the Turkish interests will come up.

The current circumstances don't seem to allow for a frontal collision between Russia, the US, NATO and their allies. But that doesn't mean that the tensions will not escalate from now  onwards. The ties between the US and Russia certainly won't become stronger since both sides want to play a bigger part in the region and are operating within a framework of increasing regional complex interdependences. Syria's internal conflict has become a massive proxy war for numerous powers in and out of the region and will surely exacerbate.  

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