US Suspends F-35 Deliveries to Turkey Over Russia Arms Deal

US insists Turkey can't buy F-35s and S-400s

After months of threatening Turkey over their decision to make a deal to buy Russia’s top of the line air defense system, the S-400, the Trump Administration today announced that they are halting all cooperation and deliveries with Turkey related to the planned purchase of F-35 planes.

The cost F-35 program has had the US pushing hard to try to recoup losses by exporting some of the warplanes abroad, and Turkey was expected to be one of the big customers. Yet having warned Turkey they couldn’t have the F-35 and Russia’s S-400, it seems Turkey has chosen the later.

Initial complaints about the S-400 purchases were that they’d be incompatible with most of NATO’s air defense systems, which are US made. In practice, this has mostly boiled down to the US losing sales and not being happy about it.

Tensions between the US and Turkey have not helped matters, with the US usually relying on its close relations to make such deals, but the relationship with the Erdogan government, ever worsening, has convinced many within Turkey that they should shop around for the best deal for their situation instead of just buying the costliest US-made weapon irrespective of the situation.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.