Tsars’ and sultans’ constant wars
The world has witnessed a series of continuous major wars between Russian tsars and Ottoman sultans from the 16th century till the beginning of the 20th century, during which the Ottomans lost six successive wars since the 17681774 war till the 1877-1878 war. Consequently, the Ottomans lost the Crimean peninsula, control over the Bosphorus Strait and had to grant independence to many of the Balkans as a result of such wars.
One of the main reasons of World War I was the tsar’s ambition to control the Ottoman sultan’s territories. Russia was the third party in the Sykes-Picot agreement that gave Iraq to Britain, Levant to France and parts of Turkey and northern Persia to Russia, which only gave up claiming its cut when the Bolshevik Revolution erupted and civil wars started between the Whites and Reds.
Constant wars between tsars and sultans and successive revolutions in both empires weakened both and led to their collision 100 years ago when Russia sharply shifted to leftism led by Communist leader Lenin and Turkey shifted to the extreme right under the leadership of Ataturk. The Cold War between East and West and between NATO and Warsaw pacts strongly contributed to widening the gaps between both sides and that is why the complications of shooting the Russian fighter jet by Turkey cannot be perceived without mentioning this historic background.
It is funny that Russia gets angry and accelerates things because Turkey shot down one of it very old military fighters for breaching its airspace, killing one of its pilots, while Russia (former Soviet Union) shot down a South Korean commercial flight killing all 269 passengers onboard for accidently entering its airspace in 1983. At that time, Russia insisted that it had every right to shoot down any military or civilian plane breaching its airspace after warning it. — Translated by Kuwait Times