Day One: The US Downs a Syrian Su-22 in Combat
Not since the war in Kosovo has the United States shot down an enemy aircraft via air-to-air combat. With recent tensions in Eastern Syria, however, it now appears that such a quiet streak is over.
An official statement from Operation Inherent Resolve, an international coalition tasked with combating ISIS, has confirmed that a US F/A-18E Super Hornet shot down a Su-22 belonging to the Syrian Air Force on June 18th. Said craft was immediately eliminated; crashing to the ground near the contested town of al-Tabqah. Russia, a key ally of the Assad regime, has yet to comment on the current situation. The so called "de-confliction line", however, was in use.
Day Two: Russia Responds
As of June 19th, Russia has issued a virtual ultimatum to coalition forces who threaten regime targets west of the Euphrates river. S-400 systems deployed in the region have reportedly gone on high alert; fully prepared to target, track, and destroy those who violate regime airspace.
While there is no immediate indication of a confrontation, this whole fiasco will certainly affect recent gains agains ISIS in eastern Syria.
This story is active, and will thus be updated as needed.