(IsraelNN.com) Israel has been left out of joint air force exercises over Turkey in which pilots from America, Britain, Turkey, Jordan, and the United Arab Emirates are engaging in mock aerial battles. The Anatolian Eagle exercises, which began Monday near the central Turkish city of Konya, indicate a deepening cooperation between the allies.
Similar exercises held in November 2008 featured Israeli air force participation.
The drill's 83 jets, mostly from Turkey, performed live bombing and practiced attacking ground targets from low altitudes while maneuvering against simulated surface-to-air missiles. All aerial battles are being recorded on tape to enable pilots to study potentially deadly errors. The exercises, which will continue through Friday, are patterned after similar training performed at the Nellis U.S. Air Force Base in Nevada.
The first Anatolian Eagle joint military exercise took place with participation from the U.S., Turkey, and Israel over southern Turkey in June 2001. Since the formation of a bilateral defense alliance between Jerusalem and Ankara in 1996, Israeli and Turkish air forces have flown together over several times over both countries.
The joint exercises represent the latest development in a growing relationship between the U.S and Turkey which includes major military supplies such as the sale of the F-16 multi-role fighter. Calling Turkey "the gateway to Iran and Syria," the White House recently lent its approval for Turkish measures to improve defense and military relations with Syria. Border security exercises conducted by Ankara and Damascus in late April were the first sign of the growing partnership.
Israeli officials expressed concern over the emerging relations between Syria and Turkey, relaying their dismay to the U.S. administration during the three-day Syrian-Turkish exercise.
Turkish military officials said they had also received approval from the Obama administration for a major weapons sale to the Lebanese military which includes U.S.-origin systems and weapons. Israeli military officials responded by voicing concerns to the Turkish General Staff that a Lebanese military trained and equipped by Ankara could threaten Israel.
Israel should mind its own business. They piss me off. Im so sick of them not letting the Lebanese Armed Forces not having any arms at all there bloody wepons is a threat it us... But thats OK because its Israel :nuts: Turkey can have realtions with anyone they like.
Israel has been left out? What sensationalism from the reporter; isn't it obvious that a joint air exercise involving Jordan and the UAE, in the current political situation of the ME, would not include Israel?
Military cooperation between Turkey and Israel, including joint exercises, still continue as normal, this does not mean that every joint exercise that takes place in Turkey has to include Israel or the US or any other specific country for that matter.
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