Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu met with U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken in Washington on Wednesday to discuss bilateral defense cooperation, including the sale of F-16 fighter jets. CERL Executive Board member General Joseph Votel told VOA in writing:
The United States must tie any F-16 deal to “Turkish support for NATO expansion and an agreement to not further de-stabilize northern Syria with military action.”
General Joseph L. Votel, U.S. Army (Ret.) is President & Chief Executive Officer of Business Executives for National Security (BENS). He is a retired U.S. Army Four-Star officer and the former Commander of the U.S. Central Command – responsible for U.S. and coalition military operations in the Middle East, Levant and Central and South Asia. During his 39 years in the military, he commanded special operations and conventional military forces at every level. His career included combat in Panama, Afghanistan and Iraq. Notably, he led a 79-member coalition that successfully liberated Iraq and Syria from the Islamic State Caliphate. He preceded his assignment at CENTCOM with service as the Commander of U.S. Special Operations Command and the Joint Special Operations Command. Read his full bio here.