ATHENS – Turkey has such numerical superiority over Greece in military manpower and weapons that the best defense is to follow the Israeli model to have an advantage in the quality of armaments, an American analyst recommended.
That was also a recommendation to the US government by American Enterprise Institute Senior Fellow Michael Rubin who told the Greek newspaper Kathimerini it could give Greece an edge.
He also said that Cyprus, where Turkey occupied the northern third in two unlawful 1974 invasions and keeps a 35,000-strong standing army, should follow the same path despite being vastly outgunned.
That is all based on what the US did in the 1960s to further build up its arsenal during the Cold War and Rubin said that the US Congress should veto President Joe Biden’s plan to sell more F-16 fighter jets to Turkey and also upgrade the Turkish Air Force.
If Turkey gets those jets, said Rubin, then Greece should – as Prime Minister Kyriakos Mitsotakis is seeking – get American made F-35s to offset the bigger Turkish Air Force, which regularly invades Greek air space.
The analyst said that Greece also needs better anti-aircraft systems after Turkey – undercutting NATO – bought Russian-made S-400 missile defense systems that could also be used against Greece in a conflict.
One of Greece’s biggest advantages is the superiority of its fighter pilots who regularly rank among the best in NATO in the world and with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan having weakened his Air Force by jailing top pilots in the aftermath of a failed July, 2016 coup attempt against him.