S-400 Air Defence Missile System

Analysis: Turkey’s Air Defense Agenda | A Challenging Path

This study is designed to deliver background information, to lay bare the course of the S-400 procurement process, and to provide the reasoning to better understand the responses to the famous five “wh” and “how” questions.

The issue of the S-400s has turned out to be a turning point between the USA and Turkey in testing the strength of their long-lasting partnership. Although both are deeply involved in searching for a way out, the probable “dead-end” is still a challenging factor for their alliance. On the other hand, the problematic fields in question, which are actually the iceberg lurking underneath the surface, make the S-400 dispute the iconic interface. Both countries have long experienced controversy after a series of events that have occurred over the last two decades. Within this context, Turkey’s S-400 procurement and the threats by U.S. political figures -mainly the expulsion of Turkey from the F-35 Fighter Jet program – escalated tension between the two traditional allies. As Turkey received the S-400 air defense system, it has been vital to refresh the “whats” and “whys” in order to facilitate assessments. This study is designed to deliver background information, to lay bare the course of the S-400 procurement process, and to provide the reasoning to better understand the responses to the famous five “wh” and “how” questions.

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