Russia warns shooting down US jets

SUBHEAD: White House spokesman confirms plan for U.S. air strikes on Syria has been rejected.

By Jmie McIntyre on 6 October 2016 for Washington Examiner -

Image above: White House spokesman Josh Earnest confirmed this plan change to reporters on Thursday 6th October 2016. From (

Just days after Russia moved an additional advanced anti-aircraft battery to Syria, Moscow hinted toward a possible shoot-down of U.S. or coalition planes that threaten or attack Syrian government troops, which are backed by Moscow.

The U.S. and Russia have a memorandum of understanding designed to avert any confrontation between their warplanes in the skies over Syria, but Moscow says that doesn't apply to its ground-based missile crews.

"Any missile or airstrikes on the territory controlled by the Syrian government will create a clear threat to Russian servicemen," Russian Defense Ministry spokesman Gen. Igor Konashenkov said Thursday, according to Kremlin-backed Russia Today."

"Russian air defense system crews are unlikely to have time to determine in a 'straight line' the exact flight paths of missiles and then who the warheads belong to."

At the Pentagon, a reporter asked spokesman Peter Cook whether the statement represented a threat to U.S. aircraft.

"Well, again, I'll leave it to the Russians to describe what the purpose of that system, those systems are for. And I will highlight once again that their stated intent in going into Syria was to target groups like al Nusra and ISIL, and those groups do not operate aircraft," he said.

"And so we would continue to have concerns about what purpose they're serving in those locations.

And more importantly, we'll continue to conduct our operations as we have for months now over Syria, and we'll continue to do so taking every possible step we need to to ensure the safety of our air crews, coalition air crews in Syria."

He also said that despite differences with the Russians over Syria, the MOU with Moscow has been successful in reducing the risk to U.S. pilots.

"It has been an effective means of communication to avoid misunderstanding and miscalculation," Cook said. "We will continue to employ that line of communication in an appropriate fashion, and would encourage the Russians to do the same."

Konashenkov seemed also to be boasting that U.S. stealth technology would offer little protection against Russia's advanced S-300 and S-400 missile systems, both of which it has deployed in Syria.

Video above: White House spokesman Josh Earnest speaking to reporters on Thursday 6th October 2016. From (


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