DSP - The Trump Administration Is Forcing Turkey to Make a Choice

F-35B Lightning II- Ready to Strike

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Currently, Turkey is in plans to purchase a missile defense system from Russia called the S-400.

Meanwhile, the Trump administration putting pressure on Turkey to stop the deal by threatening to remove Turkey from the F-35 program.

The Hill reports that Ellen Lord, an undersecretary of Defense for acquisition and sustainment. says, "As we have clearly communicated at all levels, Turkey will not receive the F-35 if Turkey takes delivery of the S-400 system. Thus, we need to begin unwinding Turkey's participation in the F-35 program".

This "unwinding" would include "phasing out" the manufacturing of up to 937 parts used to build the F-35 starting 2020. Turkish pilots would also not be able to participate in lessons meant to teach them how to fly the F-35 and Turkey would not be allowed into "future decisions on the aircraft".

All of this would begin to take place on July 31. If Turkey accepts the S-400 from Russia before then, the removal of Turkey from the F-35 will be accelerated.

The past year has not boded well for these threats from the United States.

Turkey has still said that they do not "intend to give up its S-400 purchase".

However, if Turkey continues with the purchase of the S-400 on or before July 31, the repercussions may be temporary.

Lord says, "None of the steps we are taking are irreversible. If Turkey chooses to forgo delivery of the S-400, we look forward to restoring normal program activity".

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