The Turkish government’s plan to purchase the Russian S-400 systems would give the advanced air defense shield, used by “known foes” of NATO, deep insight into the US radar-evading F-35 fighter jets arriving in increasing numbers in Europe, the top American Air Force general in Europe warns.
“Anything that an S-400 can do that affords it the ability to better understand a capability like the F-35 is certainly not to the advantage of the coalition,” said General Tod Wolters, who is also the NATO Allied Air Commander, on Sunday.
The US general, who was in the UK for the 2018 Chief of the Air Staff’s Air Power Conference in London, further said that the issue was worrying, but added that he was working to maintain strong military ties with Turkey, a NATO member since 1952, “for now.
Washington and NATO officials strive to prevent the sophisticated Russian-built anti-aircraft weapon system from collecting information about the US-made all-weather stealth multirole warplanes, technically known as the Lockheed Martin F-35 fighters, just as they are gaining a foothold in Europe.
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin said in the Turkish capital, Ankara, on April 3 that they had agreed to expedite the delivery of S-400 missile systems. The delivery is expected to start between late 2019 and early 2020.
Russia is currently producing the defense systems for the Anatolian country under a loan agreement concluded between the countries last December.
The S-400 system, whose full name is the Triumf Mobile Multiple Anti-Aircraft Missile System (AAMS), is an advanced Russian missile system designed to detect, track, and destroy planes, drones, or missiles as far as 402 kilometers away. It has previously been sold only to China and India.
Last month, Turkey also received the first of the six F-35 warplanes from the US, according to a contract signed between Ankara and Washington. The US senators have already opposed the fighters’ delivery in light of Ankara's plan to purchase the Russian defense systems.
Experts say operating an F-35 nearby will also allow the S-400 system to accumulate key information about the range of detection and other characteristics of the aircraft, potentially undermining any element of surprise.
Turkey is striving to boost its air defense, particularly after Washington decided in 2015 to withdraw its Patriot surface-to-air missile system from Turkey's border with Syria, a move that weakened Turkey’s air defense.
Before gravitating towards Russia, the Turkish military reportedly walked out of a $3.4-billion contract for a similar Chinese system. The withdrawal took place under purported pressure from Washington.
Ankara’s ties with its Western allies in NATO have been strained over a range of issues. Erdogan has been critical of Washington for supporting Kurdish groups in Syria that he says are responsible for terror attacks inside Turkey.
Erdogan has also slammed American officials for rejecting his requests to hand over Fethullah Gulen, a powerful opposition figure living in the US, whom Ankara accuses of having masterminded a coup attempt in July 2016
Turkey can easily find out how to track the F35 which is supposed to be using the S400. The minute that Turkey proves that the F35 are not stealth and are able to be detected by the Russian S400 the game is up for the US, they have breached their contract with those they are selling the F35 to because the main selling point was that the F35 is STEALTH.
I understand the Gen's worry. But, in this case, what doesn't kill you. makes you stronger.
Russia should be way more worry about giving those things, to enemy blocks. As they will struggle, to bypass the system. About F35?
F35 is an modernized, Yak141 Freestyle. Go look it up! Even F22 tech comes from Yak! The flat rectangular nozzles, hailed by west as , U.S innovation are copies of Yak , innovated one's, fro the 141.
Thanks to, the most infamous, Gorbachev "the belittled, " Yak enter in cooperation with Lockheed. Lockheed wanted it, I believe was the first ever, supersonic VTOL, but, I haven;'t checked. The tail of the VTOL F35 was invented, innovated and made in Russia!
Yak sold a license to Lockheed. But the stealth, electronics , etc, made the jet a problem. About stealth, it was a Russian mathematician, that taught U.S how to build the F117! Pyotr Ufimtsev, in 1964 , published the work, of how to evade radars, using angles etc, that U.S was desperately looking, and Russia had. The F117, B2, and all stealth of west , rely on his work. Even "Have Blue" air force project. No one told him to shut up about it anyways. In early 60's he went to Soviet brass , presenting his F117. After consultations, brass said, " we no longer need any of this", and scrapped his team! He got so mad, began talking it on radio, CIA was listening. And published a book. But still, without the man, there would be no real progress. He taught at universities and ran his mouth. But he "only" a mathematician.
Russia is decades ahead on stealth , many calculate 70 to 100 years. And I agree. So, how S 400, will learn anything, from F35?
Get why SU57, doesn't even look stealth. And is under other school of thought!
Not knowing the least of the pathology in Ergogan's thinking pattern can be detrimental to other nations and their people. Enough with the s400 fiasco. The compromise is clear, the US has always wanted to get their hands on Russian military technology - Ergogan knows, the West knows it, and it seems that Russia is somewhere between oblivion and insanity. Ergogan is a mole of the highest order. And, is a Nato diehard (no matter what's being reported) who also has wetdreams about being a member of the EU. The vultures are on high alert and continue to scheme and plan - one false mishap by a leader whose power is pointing upward can bring catastrophic consequences. Keeping the enemy close is one thing, but allowing them the chance to pickpocket is sheer folly.
Russian S400 is worth buying as it even detects the radar evading US Aircraft F35. I think S400 will be bought by any country to safeguard its territory