A Dangerous Encounter: US F-22 Chased Away over Syria by Russian Fighter Jets

by John Galt
December 9, 2017 15:25 ET

A very dangerous and irresponsible air encounter occurred over the Deir Ezzor region in Syria which could have easily tripped the world into a global conflict involving Russia and the United States.

Per the Russian news agency TASS, a US F-22 fighter was performing dangerous maneuvers designed to interrupt operations of Russian Air Force SU-25 Frogfoot ground attack aircraft as the Islamic State was being driven out of its remaining positions in the region along the Euphrates River.

Excerpt from the story via TASS:

“On November 23, in the air above the western bank of the Euphrates River, a U.S. F-22 fighter hindered actively Russia’s two Sukhoi-24 attackers in fulfilling their combat tasks to destroy a command station of the Islamic State (IS, terrorist organization outlawed in Russia – TASS) near Mayadin,” spokesman of the Russian Defense Ministry Igor Konashenkov said. “The F-22 fired heat flares and released braking flaps, constantly maneuvering, to simulate a dogfight.”

The F-22 Raptor “halted dangerous maneuvers and hurried away into Iraq’s air space” after the Russian Su-35S highly maneuverable aircraft appeared nearby, Konashenkov said.

Why is this so disturbing?

First, it would appear to validate the claims by some Russian defense officials that indeed, elements of the USAF and special forces operating in the region were providing cover for ISIS leadership to escape the cauldron being created as the pocket closed along the Euphrates River and to provide direct support for Kurdish SDF forces against Syrian and Russian forces operating in the area. This is a strategic region not only because it will provide Iranian forces unfettered ground transport connections with the Syrian military but will cut off the Kurdish SDF forces from Iraqi support via the U.S. military in the area(see map below).

Second, this means that either Secretary of Defense Mattis has relinquished operational control to another member of the swamp or that he is directly providing cover for our intelligence services which are believed to have assisted ISIS in their initial attacks on the Assad regime. Either conclusion is disturbing because it means that the United States is far more willing to risk a state of war with Russia than we were previously led to believe.

Lastly, and maybe a positive, it gave Russian and US air commanders a chance to do a base evaluation of the performance of each nation’s top line fighters in a real time combat situation and the data will cause changes in strategies on both sides. Or worse, it could provide over confidence on either side that they are ready for a direct conflict and a willingness to take more chances over the nation of Syria.

Regardless of the statements from either side, this appears to validate the fears of many in the region that a major war could start over Iraq and Syria dragging Russia and the United States into a nightmare scenario. God help us if this is true.

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  • Whacked2

    All show and disinformation.

    Syrian Hezbollah and Iranian Militia arms dump taken out and a Syrian plane shot down – no information as to whom.

    Russia advised that they defeated ISIS in Syria – which is all bullshit as well. Excuse now for Putin to withdraw troops.

    Syria and Assad is now left with warlords and Iran – which is in reality piranna (sp) and a shark. Will not last long.

    If you noticed Hariri returned to Lebanon – as he was threatened with assassination by Hezbollah it means that Hezbollah are now gutted. Lebanon declared its neutrality in the Middle East – they can be friends with KSA and Iran. Trump giving them high tech weaponry so US alphabet Agencies finished their due diligence.

    Iraq defeated ISIS with KSA and GCC assistance. Now waiting for Iraq to recognise Israel.

    KSA and UAE are joining militarily – believe this is to take on Iran.

    KSA won in Yemen against Houthis – provided much needed aid to civilians well before Trumps tweet – the disinformation is amazing – KSA also rounded up 100’s of mullahs who refused the new laws not to preach hatred in schools and mosques – rule of law 101 being applied throughout the kingdom – no one whether imam or royal spared.

    Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as the Israel capital is great – India will follow together with KSA. This has brought all the radical islamists out – there are reasons to identify now – as the next mopping up operation a big one, should Abbas not seek peace then I expect action to be taken in Washington DC with PLO and Hamas offices being closed – was on Trump’s agenda but will happen sooner or later.

    The single biggest item everyone missed was Leonardo’s portrait – New Louvre – who would have thought that this painting would hang in the Middle East? In fact who would have thought a Muslim would acquire it to hang in the Middle East?

    Changing too fast for me – personally still think peace in Middle East in two years achievable.

  • Whacked2

    A tad late for Trump – but confirmation that he wants to be involved in what happens next in Syria.
    Russia is moving out.
    https://sputniknews.com/military/201712121059917800-us-strikes-syria-trump/

    • Which is a disaster of epic proportions if we do get further involved…

      • Whacked2

        No do not think so – the latest block on negotiations lodged by Russia. Cannot let Putin and Lavros dictate – Syria will be worse off than before.
        As Iraq found out – seek help from Iran and accept the consequences – bullyboy tactics – Syria is a similar position now.

        KSA comics look at Iran as the shark in the ME – apt.

        It is a Regional Problem – KSA have studied defeat – they do not want history to repeat (Iraq/Libya) and no doubt need US as the offset to Russian dominance. This will be resolved amicably but Assad has to go – he is a liar in chief.

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