INIOCHOS 2023: Turks react angrily to Indian pilots wearing "Mehmetçik Busters" patch

Mehmetçik Busters, Iniochos 2023, Indian pilot

The rubber badge (patch) worn on the arm by an Indian airman who participated in the "INIOCHOS 2023" exercise, which took place in Greece between April 18-28 caused angry reactions in Turkey. The patch depicts a Mirage 2000 chasing a... ghost in a fez with the words "Mehmetçik Busters."

In the photo that has been made public, it shows General Konstantinos Floros greeting an Indian airman who took part in the exercise and is wearing the patch in question on his arm.

Turkish media and social media users talked about a "devilish union" between Greece and India, since New Delhi is a mortal enemy of Turkey's close ally Pakistan.

In the past, the patch in question was "worn" by Greek Air Force pilots, sometimes working as an animator.

However, they are not official marks and logos, as Turkey complain, who have themselves from time to time released - on a private initiative - patches with themes against Greece and Cyprus.

Mehmetçik ('little Mehmet') is a term originating from World War I that was used to affectionately refer to soldiers of the Turkish Army, and in this way it is not difficult to figure out what is meant by "Mehmetçik Busters."

The Indian Air Force (IAF) participated in Exercise INIOCHOS-23, a multi-national air exercise hosted by the Hellenic Air Force, the air force of Greece.

The exercise was conducted at the Andravida Air Base in Greece. The Indian Air Force participated with four Su-30 MKI and two C-17 aircraft.

The objective of the exercise was to enhance international cooperation, synergy and interoperability among the participating Air Forces The exercise was conducted in a realistic combat scenario involving multiple types of air and surface assets.

It also enabled the participating contingents to engage in professional interactions, providing valuable insight into each other’s best practices.

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