US should reject Turkish ‘hostage politics’

'An additional purchase of Russian weapons systems would be against the CAATSA Act and would put Turkey under the pressure of even more US sanctions,' says Endy Zemenides. [Nikos Kokkalias]

Arguing that if Ankara doesn't get the F-16s it wants from the United States, it will get Russian jets is tantamount to accepting Turkey's hostage politics, says Endy Zemenides, executive director of the American Leadership Council (HALC), explaining that "this is not an actual dilemma."

Zemenides details the reasons why the US, having very strong negotiating leverage, should not proceed with such a sale unless it gets significant trade-offs and a substantial policy change from Ankara.

There is this theory that if Ankara does not get what it wants from the US, it will buy more Russian weapons systems. You argue that this is not an actual dilemma. Can you explain your reasoning?

This theory accepts the premise of Turkey's hostage politics. It essentially legitimizes the Turkish blackmail: "Give us the F-16s or we will buy Russian planes." This...

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