Syrian Government Forces Shoot down Turkish Military Plane

It is not sure how Turkey is going to deal with the shooting down of one of its F-4 jets off the coast of Syria. The two man crew was rescued alive but it seems that Turkey’s already deteriorating relationship with Syria may take a nose dive after this event. Much has been made of the effect on Israeli-Turkish relationships after the attack by Israel on the Mavi Marmara and this attack appears to be in the same category.

All that Turkey asked from Israel was an apology for the killing of its citizens and when this was not forthcoming relationships took a turn for the worse. Perhaps Syria will apologise and the matter will be seen as an unfortunate accident but this is doubtful as such an attack is rarely an accident. Turkey is a member of Nato, meaning that it could invoke Article V of the North Atlantic Treaty and summon the aid of all 28 countries in the alliance if it comes under attack. Many in the West would welcome a more aggressive intervention by Turkey but we will have to wait to see if the country is prepared to go further than talk.

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