National Intelligence director James Clapper says he wouldn’t put it past Russia to “to shoot down an American aircraft” if a no-fly zone is imposed over Syria.
Clapper says Moscow has a very advanced and capable air defense system deployed in Syria. He says he thinks it’s possible that Russia would down a US aircraft if it felt its ground forces were threatened.
The Obama administration has refrained from setting up a no-fly, or safe zone for civilians, in Syria partly because of the complexity in manning and enforcing it. Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton has called for a no-fly zone over parts of Syria. Clapper spoke Tuesday at the Council on Foreign Relations in New York.