[pjw] NEWS: US Shoots Down Syrian Aircraft for First Time (AP 6/19)

Peace and Justice Works pjw at pjw.info
Mon Jun 19 14:08:28 EDT 2017

What can I say.

>From this article:
    "The [US-led]
    coalition does not seek to fight Syrian regime, Russian or pro-regime
    forces partnered with them, but will not hesitate to defend coalition
    or partner forces from any threat. "

Uh, what are you doing in Syria in the first place? Did I miss the UN 
mandate and the Congressional Authorization?

Also, the Russians have stopped communicating with the US (for now), 
meaning aircraft conflicts between them and/or involving Syria may be more 

The Times article concludes:
   In Moscow, Frants Klintsevich, the deputy chairman of the Russian
   Senate's defense committee, called the downing of the Syrian warplane a
   "blunt act of aggression and provocation."

   "It is Russia that is being provoked most of all," Mr. Klintsevich
   wrote in a Facebook post. "It seems that the United States under Donald
   Trump is the source of danger for the Middle East and the whole world
   on a qualitatively new level."

dan h
peace and justice works iraq affinity group

Pentagon: US Shoots Down Syrian Aircraft for First Time
           Written by ROBERT BURNS, AP National Security Writer
           Published: 19 June 2017

    WASHINGTON (AP) - The U.S. military on Sunday shot down a Syrian Air
    Force fighter jet that bombed local forces aligned with the Americans
    in the fight against Islamic State militants, an action that appeared
    to mark a new escalation of the conflict.

    The U.S. had not shot down a Syrian regime aircraft before Sunday's
    confrontation, said Navy Capt. Jeff Davis, a Pentagon spokesman. While
    the U.S. has said since it began recruiting, training and advising what
    it calls moderate Syrian opposition forces to fight IS that it would
    protect them from potential Syrian government retribution, this was the
    first time it resorted to engaging in air-to-air combat to make good on
    that promise.

    The U.S.-led coalition headquarters in Iraq said in a written statement
    that a U.S. F-18 Super Hornet shot down a Syrian government SU-22 after
    it dropped bombs near the U.S. partner forces, known as the Syrian
    Democratic Forces.

    The shootdown was near Tabqa, a Syrian town in an area that has been a
    weekslong focus of fighting against IS militants by the SDF as they
    surround the city of Raqqa and attempt to retake it from IS.

    The U.S. military statement said it acted in "collective self defense"
    of its partner forces and that the U.S. did not seek a fight with the
    Syrian government or its Russian supporters.

    According to a statement from the Pentagon, pro-Syrian regime forces
    attacked the U.S.-backed Syrian Democratic Forces-held town of Ja'Din,
    south of Tabqah in northern Syria, wounding a number of SDF fighters
    and driving the SDF from the town.

    Coalition aircraft conducted a show of force and stopped the initial
    pro-regime advance toward the town, the Pentagon said. Following the
    pro-Syrian forces attack, the coalition called its Russian counterparts
    "to de-escalate the situation and stop the firing," according to the

    A few hours later, the Syrian SU-22 dropped bombs near SDF fighters
    and, "in collective self-defense of coalition-partnered forces," was
    immediately shot down by a U.S. F/A-18E Super Hornet, the Pentagon

    "The coalition's mission is to defeat ISIS in Iraq and Syria," the
    Pentagon said, using an abbreviation for the Islamic State group. "The
    coalition does not seek to fight Syrian regime, Russian or pro-regime
    forces partnered with them, but will not hesitate to defend coalition
    or partner forces from any threat. "

    U.S. forces tangled earlier this month with Syria-allied aircraft in
    the region. On June 8, U.S. officials reported that a drone likely
    connected to Iranian-supported Hezbollah forces fired on U.S.-backed
    troops and was shot down by an American fighter jet. The incident took
    place in southern Syria near a base where the U.S.-led coalition was
    training Syrian rebels fighting the Islamic State group.

    An Army spokesman at the Pentagon said at the time that the drone
    carried more weapons and was considered a direct threat, prompting the


    Associated Press writer Lolita C. Baldor contributed to this report.

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