US Refuses to Reveal Details on Downed Turkish Jet
U.S. officials claim they know the details regarding the Turkish jet downed by Syria last month, but refuse to reveal them to the public.
"Those in the American government who need to know [details] know them," a U.S. Foreign Affairs official told Hurriyet Daily. "But we will make no statements about the topics in question."
Declining to explain why a Pentagon official leaked rumors to the Washington Post claiming that the jet was over Syrian waters when it was shot down, the official, requesting anonymity, said the details were inconsequential to the American government.
"Whether the jet was shot over Syrian territory or over international waters, or what it was shot with, what difference does it make? What matters to us is that it was downed,” the official said, according to Hurriyet.
"Turkey thought the louder its statements were, the more believable they would be," the official said. "I guess that was why the prime minister made those statements. It's like an American shouting to someone who doesn't speak English. We, however, will not say anything on the matter."
Turkey and U.S. are "90 percent" on the same page on the crisis in Syria, the official said, citing Turkey's "more interventionist" attitude as a difference between the countries' views.
There have been speculations in Turkey as to why President Barack Obama did not call Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan immediately following the downing of the jet, when the two leaders were known to have exchanged 13 phone calls in the last year.
Providing a possible reason for the lack of contact, the official said, “There are elections in the U.S. this year. And when foreign affairs are discussed during American elections, the only thing that matters is Israel's security. That should be taken into consideration in the progress of relations."
"We clearly don't want to intervene in Syria," the official said. "But we cannot say that is a direct reason [for Obama not to call].”