Erdogan tells off US: Purchase of S-400 is a done deal, Turkey doesn’t need F-35s anyway

Recep Tayyip Erdogan has reaffirmed Turkey’s commitment to purchasing the Russian-made S-400 air-defense system, asserting that Ankara has alternatives if the Washington cancels its F-35 deal.

Comment: Of course they do. Countries don’t purchase F-35s because they need fighter jets. It’s more akin to money laundering. If they want effective jets, they don’t buy American.

Speaking to a crowd of military officers at a graduation ceremony on Friday, the Turkish president said that Turkey “needs” the S-400 system for its defense, and that deliveries would happen very soon on account that the deal was already “done.”

He added that it was “not acceptable” for Turkey to accept US impositions regarding the S-400 sale and, if the US wanted to cancel its deal to deliver F-35 fighter jets to Turkey, then “we have alternatives.”

A member of NATO, Turkey’s decision to buy the S-400 has been a major concern for the US and other members of the alliance, who fear that its deployment alongside US-made weapons and systems operated by Turkey, such as the F-35, will be put at risk.

Comment: The real reason is that the S-400 actually works, and countries who have them can actually defend themselves. The same doesn’t go when they buy the American ‘equivalents’.

As a means of coercion, Washington has stalled on deliveries of the F-35 to Turkey, hinting at possible sanctions and an outright cancellation of the F-35 sale if Turkey doesn’t bail on the S-400 deal. Erdogan, however, said that they will continue to pay into the program.

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