NEWSWATCH The National Interest/Nikolas K. Gvosdev: “Russian Jet Down in Turkey: Misstep or Game-Changer?”
Writing for The National Interest, Nikolas K. Gvosdev comments upon possible repercussions from Turkey’s shoot-down of a Russia military jet.
In the immediate aftermath, whatever progress Presidents Vladimir Putin and Recep Tayyip Erdogan achieved on the sidelines of the Antalya G-20 summit is now completely lost. Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov’s trip to Turkey, which was designed to get the Turkish-Russian agenda back on track, has now been cancelled. The shoot-down may prove to be the final nail in the coffin of a losing four-year attempt by both Russia and Turkey to find a way to compartmentalize their deep disagreements over Syria from infringing upon a very lucrative economic relationship between the two countries. Putin’s comments about a “stab in the back,” and Erdogan’s own clear statements that Turkey will not stand by any infringement of its airspace, suggest that a rapid move by both sides to offer apologies and to put the incident behind them seem to signal that this incident will continue to have negative consequences for the relationship.