NATO

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U.S.–Turkey ties slide further amid advanced weapons impasse

Unloading of a Russian military cargo plane in Ankara, Turkey
A Russian cargo aircraft delivering S-400 components to Murted Air Base in Ankara, Turkey. Photo: Rasit Aydogan/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

The U.S. removed Turkey from the F-35 fighter jet program on Wednesday, escalating a months-long standoff over Turkey's purchase of Russian S-400 air defense systems.

Why it matters: Turkey is a strategic U.S. ally in the Eastern Mediterranean and Central Asia and an important partner in American relations with the Muslim world. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s decision to move forward with the S-400 purchase risks undermining NATO military coordination and exposing U.S. and broader NATO alliance capabilities to Russian intelligence.

Turkey receiving Russian S-400 missile system despite U.S. warnings

Turkish President Erdogan (L) with Trump at the G-20. Photo: Metin Aktas/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

Turkey has received “the first group of equipment” from a Russian S-400 air defense system despite warnings from the U.S. and other NATO allies who say the system could compromise the alliance's security.

Between the lines: "Turkey sees the balance of power shifting away from Europe and the U.S. and envisions itself as a more independent actor in a changing global order," two senior Turkish officials tell Bloomberg.