VIA| Vladimir Putin, the President of the Russian Federation, was not-at-all-pleased about NATO ally Turkey shooting down a Russian Su-24 fighter jet near the Syrian-Turkish border – just to say the least.
In a press conference, Putin blasted the moderate Muslim nation and excoriated it as “backstabbing” Russia. Russia Today reported:
Turkey backstabbed Russia by downing the Russian warplane and acted as accomplices of the terrorists, Russian President Vladimir Putin said.
“This incident stands out against the usual fight against terrorism. Our troops are fighting heroically against terrorists, risking their lives. But the loss we suffered today came from a stab in the back delivered by accomplices of the terrorists,” Putin said.
Putin said the plane was hit by a Turkish warplane as it was traveling at an altitude of 6000 meters about a kilometer from the Turkish border. It was hit by an air-to-air missile launched by a Turkish F-16 jet. The crash site is four kilometers from the border. The plane posed no threat to Turkish national security, he stressed.
Putin said the plane was targeting terrorist targets in the Latakia province of Syria, many of whom came from Russia.
The incident prompted an emergency meeting between Russia and Turkey, which has delicate relations with regional interests such as Syria, Iraq and Iran.
Turkey’s loyalties in the fight against ISIS and other jihadist groups have been questioned before. For instance, the nation would not allow the U.S. to conduct airstrikes on ISIS from an airbase close to targets in Kobani – forcing the U.S. to carry them out 1,200 miles from bases in the Persian Gulf.
Nonetheless, White House criticism directed towards Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and the nation’s reluctance to militarily engage ISIS (such as refusing to send in ground troops) – has been muted.
State Dept. Secretary John Kerry, in tones characteristic of several terrorist incidents carried out against Western and U.S. powers, called the Islamic State’s advance into Kobani a “tragedy.”
Such is the lack of outrage or promise of action that has Americans on edge and highly dissatisfied with the White House’s handling of counter-terrorism and foreign relations.
A Washington Post editorial sums up the widespread incredulity to the White House’s argument that Islamist terrorism is “contained” after the Paris attacks:
So what has been President Obama’s response to a series of Islamic State terrorist attacks — a Russian plane in Egypt, suicide bombings in Beirut, the Paris massacre — that demonstrate an uncontained global threat? His Nov. 16 news conference in Antalya, Turkey, provides a full picture of Obama’s wartime leadership in its seventh year: petulant, divisive and reluctant.
Under close questioning about the effectiveness and urgency of his strategy to fight the Islamic State, Obama quickly pulled out the big guns — against his American critics. They are “talking as if they’re tough” and playing “political games,” which would betray “a 25-year-old kid who’s paralyzed or has lost his limbs.”
The American people do not need divisive rhetoric and partisanship from the Commander-in-Chief at such a sensitive time; they desire leadership and a decisive course of action.
A recent CBS poll said just 23 percent of Americans believe President Obama has a “clear plan” to deal with ISIS, and furthermore, majorities among every political demographic think ground forces will be necessary to destroy the Islamic State.
According to an ABC/WaPo poll, a majority of registered voters – 83 percent – believe a terrorist attack in the United States resulting in heavy casualties is “likely” in the near future.