Ankara’s decision to shoot down a Russian bomber over Syria was not spontaneous. Some agreement by the Turkish government may have played a key role, Russian political analyst Andranik Migranyan said.
A number of economic and political reasons may have provoked Turkey to shoot down a Russian warplane over Syria. It is also possible that the personality of Turkish leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan who considers himself a “neo-Ottoman leader” of the Muslim world also played a part.
But the key factor was Erdogan’s assurance he would be covered by his powerful sponsors, Russian political analyst professor Andranik Migranyan said.
© AP PHOTO/ EMRAH GUREL
On November 24, a Turkish jet shot down a Russian Su-24 bomber over Syria. Russian President Vladimir Putin described the incident as a “stab in the back carried out by accomplices of terrorists.” In turn, the Russian government is now working on responsive measures to this act of aggression by Turkey.
“Probably, besides economic, political, geopolitical or Erdogan’s personal interests, there was another factor which played a key role. Erdogan is an ambitious politician but he is not crazy,” Migranyan told Sputnik Radio.
According to the expert, that key factor is a number of foreign agreements made by Ankara. The decision to attack the Russian aircraft was not spontaneous, he added.
“It seems like the Turkish government prepared public opinion for such an incident in advance. Earlier Turkey reported several times that Russian aircraft violated the Turkish airspace. I can’t rule out that there were talks – at some level – on shooting down one Russian plane or more,” Migranyan claimed.
“For Erdogan and for some Gulf nations which sponsor terrorists, the triumphant Russian operation in Syria is like a knife in the heart. And that’s a problem both for Turkey and Washington,” the analyst underscored.
Migranyan said it may have been a temptation for Washington to spark a conflict between Moscow and Ankara.
“Now, the US Congress, especially the Republicans, is criticizing Obama for his weak leadership and inability to take decisive steps. They say Russian and Putin take all. It would be so tempting to spoil the Russian operation in Syria and spark a clash between Russia and Turkey. For the first time in the last 100 years, Turkey has challenged Russia. That couldn’t happen without any foreign agreements by Ankara,” he concluded.