There are several reasons that America would want China to give back the drone they took from us in the contested South China Sea and only one reason we wouldn’t.
We want it back because it’s ours.
We want it back because the world is watching very closely to see if we still have the clout to make demands on the newest military superpower of the world. China could be obtuse and continue with their claims that the disputed international waters of the South China Sea are theirs, prompting saber-rattling and potentially outright threats.
We want it back because the Chinese are known to steal secrets. Chances are this research drone wasn’t the key to our military prowess, but it’s technology nonetheless. Unfortunately, the fact they are willing to give it back without much fuss is likely an indication they already have the specs and pertinent information they need on the drone through previous hacks and espionage. We still want it back.
There are other reasons that concern geopolitics, principles, and public opinion, but the general idea is the same. China stole it and we cannot allow that to happen.
The one reason we wouldn’t want it back is Trumpism. This nebulous concept can be best summed up as the act of defending the random thoughts Donald Trump says or Tweets when he’s bored. The latest Tweet, following his attempt to act tough earlier yesterday morning, gives Trumpists more fodder to speculate and cheer about thoughtfully.
We should tell China that we don't want the drone they stole back.- let them keep it!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) December 18, 2016
My criticism of this Tweet prompted responses that included “it’s easier to punish them for it if they keep it.” I received a nice reply from someone who seemed to be intelligent other than when she told me, “He knows taking it back is pointless as they will have already tampered with it. The issue is how to punish?” My favorite was a DM saying, “You aren’t capable of understanding his motives because your mind isn’t built for this stuff like his is.”
No, I suppose it isn’t.
The Trumpism argument aside, let’s make sure China knows that they can’t take our things without permission. When they do take things without permission, they need to give them back and expect repercussions.
One of the only aspects of a Trump administration that gave me hope was that I thought he would be tougher than Obama on foreign issues. His Tweet bemoans a weakness in the form of immaturity that will not play well on the international stage. If he doesn’t get his foreign policy ideas straight, we’re in for a longer four years than even the most pessimistic person would have expected.