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US Countering Russia Military Trade: Tenacity Vs Thoughtlessness

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The US is using a wide range of measures, including open threats and blackmail, in order to limit  Russian miltiary trade with other countries. This large came campaign takes on various forms: from understandable attempts to defend own national interests to stupid moves, which can barely be explained with a formal logic.

US Countering Russia Military Trade: Tenacity Vs Thoughtlessness

ILLUSTRATIVE

On November 21, a senior State Department official said during the press briefing that Turkey needs to “get rid of” the Russian S-400 missile defense system it purchased, if it wnats to return to the table with Washington.

“There is room for Turkey to come back to the table. They know that to make this work they need to either destroy or return or somehow get rid of the S-400,” the official told reporters at a briefing.

“They [the Turks] know that they have the choice to move forward, and the choice is to rid themselves of the S-400 so that we can move forward,” he said.

The US formal pretext for such  an attitude claims that the S-400 purchase was not compatible with NATO military systems and would endanger new F-35 jets used by the West. The US argues that Russia will be able to acquire sensitive technical details about the F-35 if it is operated alongside the S-400.

The State Department official further threatened that the imposition of U.S. sanctions under Countering America’s Adversaries Through Sanctions Act (CAATSA) was still a possibility.

During the same briefing, the official said that the US was working with Egypt to deter it from proceeding with a $2 billion deal to buy more than 20 Su-35 Russian fighter jets.

“We’ve also been transparent with them in that if they are to acquire a significant Russian platform…that puts them at risk towards sanctions,” he said.

“They know this and we’re working through it with them,” the official said. “This is something we’ve not completely reconciled yet but they’re acutely aware of what they’re putting at risk.”

The pretext of pressure on Egypt is the same. Washington claims the usage of Su-35 and other Russian weapons could pose a threat to Egypt’s ability to operate jointly with U.S. and NATO militaries in the event of a crisis.

Egypt is not a member. However, over the years it has received billions of dollars in economic and military aid from the US and is considered a long-time ally in the unstable Middle East region. Egypt’s military operates US-supplied F-16 fighter jets. The dependence of Egypt on the US, as well as Cairo’s working relations with Saudi Arabia and Israel, may turn it into a soft target for the US pressure in the field.

At the same time, US threats towards Turkey will unlikely lead to any results because if it accepts these terms this will be a public humiliation of Ankara on the international level.The rift between the formal attitude of the US and its actions is apparent for all excluding the Washington establishment.

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