- No Fly Zone Over Syria: Trigger Point For Larger Conflict !
“The planned deployment by NATO countries of Patriot air defense systems on Turkey’s Syria border will actually amount to an imposition of a no-fly zone for Syrian aircraft in circumvention of the UN Security Council.” This is according to Vladimir Kudelev, a leading research fellow of the Russian Institute for Oriental Studies, reports Voice of Russia.
Kudelev argues that the mere presence of the Patriots will “drastically” influence events on the ground in northern Syria, because the insurgents will automatically get a 200-250 km wide “umbrella” along the Syrian-Turkish border (Kudelev’s numbers aren’t quite right. The maximum range of the Patriot PAC-3 missile is actually on the order of 160 km). More importantly, the deployment of the Patriots would undermine the role of the UN Security Council, by taking another step towards creating a no-fly zone without UNSC authorization.
Another Russian analyst, journalist Stanislav Tarasov, tells the Voice of Russia that NATO was originally strongly against intervening in a conflict between Turkey and Syria. He argues that Turkey originally wanted to invoke Article 5 of the NATO charter “which means that they wanted to drag NATO into the conflict and thus ensure its military presence in the region,” but NATO said “No.” So, Turkey resorted to Article 4 consultations, instead.
But there’s another dimension to the Patriot deployment that has nothing directly to do with Syria. “Moscow believes that in the case the Patriot Missile Air Defense Systems are deployed to Turkey, they can be used as one of the elements of the early warning system – that is, as one of the elements of the European missile defense system which the USA is ardently defending by now,” says Turkish political analyst Barysh Adybelli. And thus, we get to the nub of the matter – confrontation with Russia.