Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan is escalating the rhetoric of tension and increasing the possibility of a skirmish or conflict, and Greece treats the whole situation with seriousness and self-restraint, hoping for some form of de-escalation.
Until that happens, the situation over the Aegean Sea remains tense, with Turkish violations of Greek air space and standoffs a daily occurrence, as it has been for many years. But something seems to have changed dramatically in terms of the attitude of the Greek pilots and the way they deal with the whole situation.
The feeling that the balance is changing in favour of Greece, especially with the acquisition of Rafale fighter jets and upgraded F-16's to Viper class, is creating a new reality on the ground. This new scenario has thrown the morale of Turkish pilots into tatters, who now face a new element in the dog fights they have with their Greek colleagues every day.
In an interview with the Turkish newspaper Milliyet, the retired lieutenant general of the Turkish Air Force, Erdoğan Karakuş, complained that the Greek pilots are now quite "provocative".
As he said in an interview he gave to the newspaper, when the Greek aircraft lock the target, they send a message that says: "You are locked, you are on my target, I can fire my missile if I want...".
This message causes intense irritation among the Turkish pilots, who are forced to abandon the dogfight and return to their bases in humiliation, as per usual.
According to Karakuş, the phenomenon has been more intense lately, which he attributes to the fact that Greek pilots train together with Israelis in Kalamata.
The latter seems to trouble the Turks for another reason. As Karakuş said, it is possible that the Greeks are being trained by the Israelis on the facts of the Six Day War, when the Israelis had destroyed the Egyptian planes on the ground within half an hour.
This possibility seems to be of great concern to the Turks, especially after the new data created over the Aegean by the presence of the Rafale and their ability to hit targets at long distances.
The Turks fear that the Israelis are training the Greeks to make an immediate first strike and destroy their planes while they are on the ground and at their bases.
Here, Karakuş makes an observation that we should probably take seriously - that in case of military involvement, any Greek plane that crosses the 25th longitude, from the middle of the Aegean and beyond, and well within Greek territory, should be considered a threat and shot down.
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