Russia says they are flying combat missions in Syria with the help of the United States. A Russian state-run media outlet says the US provided Russia with information that helped with the targeting of ISIS positions.
Russia has also said their planes are flying with other coalition aircraft led by the US Air Force. Julie Pace of the Associated Press reported that claim in a tweet from Moscow:
MOSCOW (AP) — Russian Defense Ministry says its warplanes have flown first combat mission in Syria with U.S.-led coalition aircraft.
— Julie Pace (@jpaceDC) January 23, 2017
United States Department of Defense denies Russia claims
The US Department of Defence says Russia is wrong about claims of working together on either targeting of ISIS locations or aircraft flying together.
— Samuel Oakford (@samueloakford) January 23, 2017
In Press Briefing, Sean Spicer leaves door open to US co-operation With Russia
While the US and Russia go back and forth on what’s actually happening, it should be noted that White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer held his first official press briefing today, and left the door open to co-operation with Russia in Syria and the fight against ISIS.
This comes as no surprise, since Trump has said numerous times that he wants the US to get along with Russia and Putin, and that the two nations should work together to fight against ISIS.
America is divided about whether a closer relationship with Russia is a positive thing. An area of particular disagreement is whether China or Russia is the greatest strategic threat to the United States. Much of the US establishment sees Russia as the biggest threat, while Trump and some of his close advisors see China as America’s top foe – both economically and militarily.
How that division is resolved will have a big impact, and if it turns out that the US is already co-operating with Russia, it gives a clue as to which side is winning out so far.
Photo – Twitter