US jets invade Syrian air space
in flagrant breach of international law
The US has confirmed that in an incident Sunday evening, an American F/A-18E Super Hornet shot down a Syrian government Su-22 bomber south of Tabqa, accusing the Syrian jet of having dropped bombs on Kurdish fighters in the town of Ja’Din.
The US has been increasingly attacking pro-government forces in eastern Syria, but this is the first time that they’ve shot down a manned Syrian aircraft, and the fact that it happened within Syrian airspace is likely to dramatically add to the tensions between the two sides.
The Pentagon argued that because they are allied with the Kurds they were free to attack the Syrian plane under the concept of “collective self-defense,” and added that they “will not hesitate” to take further military action to defend the Kurds, or other partnered forces, from future threats.
The Syrian Army said their operation was part of an ongoing push into ISIS-held territory, and that they view the US attack as a “flagrant” attempt to undermine their anti-ISIS operations. They added that the pilot of the destroyed plane is still missing after the US attack.
Asked to respond to the shootdown of a Syrian fighter jet over Syria, White House press secretary Sean Spicer said the United States will protect its interests in Syria and will “do what we can” to keep open lines of communication with Russia and Syria.
“And so we’ve gotta do what we can to work with partners and we’re going to continue to keep an open line of communication with the Russians,” Spicer said at an off-camera press briefing Monday.
Spicer added that the U.S. wants to de-escalate the situation in Syria “but will always preserve the right of self-defense.”
“The escalation of hostilities among all of the factions that are operating there doesn’t help anybody,” said Spicer. “And so making sure that people understand while we want to de-escalate the situation there, that we have to understand that we will always preserve the right of self-defense.”
The Russian Defense Ministry earlier blasted the U.S.’s action as a “massive violation of international law” and said it will begin treating U.S.-led coalition jets flying west of the Euphrates River in Syria as targets.
It was the first time the U.S. has engaged in air-to-air combat in Syria, signaling an escalation of the conflict. It is is also the first time an American aircraft has shot down any other country’s plane in air-to-air combat since 1999, when a U.S. Air Force F-16 shot down a Serbian Mig-29 during the Kosovo air campaign.
Russia, which is backing the Syrian regime in the civil war, slammed the U.S. action as a violation of Syria’s sovereignty.
“Repeated combat actions by U.S. aviation under the cover of counterterrorism against lawful armed forces of a country that is a member of the U.N. are a massive violation of international law and de facto a military aggression against the Syrian Arab Republic,” the Russian Defense Ministry said.
The downing of the Syrian jet is the latest escalation between the U.S.-led coalition and pro-regime forces in the country.
LD : Here is a Fox News video (for US mainstream ‘fake news’ consumption) trying to justify the US attack on Syria. Basically, what the US is saying here is this: “We gave Russia and Syria prior warning. So we had no option but to attack in self-defense when they refused to heed our warning to back off.”
Let’s translate this into simple school bully terms. This is like the bully telling his victim: “I’m going to attack you in 10 minutes. So I’m warning you in advance! If you dare to resist me in any way, I’ll beat the shit out of you in self-defense!”
This is how the US attack on Syria can be seen: and all this belligerence under a lying and duplicitous warmonger of a US president who had sworn repeatedly that the US would stay out of Syria AT ALL COSTS (see here, here, here and here).