2012-08-15 (China Military News from China-defense-mashup) — The latest information unleashed from Chinese Internet says Chinese expert group has
come into Iran to research U.S. RQ-170 drone. They have contact with the UAV for twice, the first “contact” lasted about 40 minutes, and the
second about four hours and they checked the internal advices. The two sides are still negotiating the details of the cooperation on reverse
engineering of RQ-170.
Only 4 days After the RQ-170′s “Capture on 4 December 2011″, Chinese Expert Group had arrived in Iran, rather than the Iran’s defense minister
Ahmad Karimpour says Tehran has received requests for Moscow and Beijing on April 19 2012.
The expert group composed by 17 people, of which a total of 11 are technical experts from PLA General Staff, General Armament Department and AVIC, as
well as others from Chinese foreign affairs ministry and diplomats in Iran.
This is curious on a number of levels.
1. The drone was genuine,
2. It really was a huge loss for the US
3. It really was a coup for Iran
4. China is taking the US seriously
5. Russia also wants a piece
6. Russia, China and Iran are co-operating militarily
The piece starts with "rumours on the chinese internet" which is strange, given the precise details revealed. The website is genuine though, and has
been reported in western military news too.
Early on we heard interesting analyses by US experts who denied any value in the capture:
"Even if the Iranians have possession of a drone, that doesn't mean they will be able to exploit its technology," says Loren Thompson of the
Lexington Institute, a Virginia-based military and security think tank.
And of course asked for it back:
"We have asked for it back. We'll see how the Iranians respond," President Barack Obama said during a White House news conference with Iraqi Prime
Minister Nouri al-Maliki on Monday.
Moreover, the software includes classified anti-tamper measures. At least, it’s supposed to, according to the Boeing engineer. “Dumbest thing in
the world if it didn’t.”
In the big picture it doesn't matter much, but it's a heck of a story.