Two Russian Sukhoi SU-25 bombers are pictured at the Hmeimim military base in Syria on December 16, 2015. Photo: Paul Gypteau/AFP
David Axe, Daily Beast: U.S. and Russian Jets Clash Over Syria
American and Russian fighter jets had a tense showdown in the skies above Syria as the Russians dropped bombs on U.S.-backed rebels.
U.S. and Russian fighter jets bloodlessly tangled in the air over Syria on June 16 as the American pilots tried and failed to stop the Russians from bombing U.S.-backed rebels in southern Syria near the border with Jordan.
The aerial close encounter underscores just how chaotic Syria’s skies have become as Russia and the U.S.-led coalition work at cross-purposes, each dropping bombs in support of separate factions in the five-year-old civil war.
The near-clash also highlights the escalating risk of American and Russian forces actually coming to blows over Syria, potentially sparking a much wider conflict between the world’s leading nuclear powers.
The incident began when at least two twin-engine Su-34 bombers, some of Moscow’s most advanced warplanes, struck what the Pentagon described as a “border garrison” housing around 200 U.S.-supported rebels in At Tanf on the Syrian side of the Syria-Jordan border.
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WNU Editor: What's my take .... this could have ended very badly .... a shooting war with both sides raising their defcon level to a level that has not been seen in years. (We are currently at Defcon 4). And while both Russia and the U.S. have come to an agreement that better coordination is needed .... US and Russia agree better coordination needed in Syria (RUDAW), the Russian Ministry of Defense is still complaining that the U.S. has not provided any details or maps on where their rebel allies are positioned so taht the Russians would not bomb them .... Washington won’t map areas of Syria controlled by US-backed opposition – Russian MoD (RT).