Return to Sender

President Obama on Monday would not discuss the case of the United States losing a sophisticated remotely piloted aircraft in Iran, but did acknowledge that the Administration seeks the stealthy reconnaissance platform’s return. “We have asked for it back. We’ll see how the Iranians respond,” said Obama during a joint White House press briefing with Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al Maliki. Otherwise, said Obama, “I’m not going to comment on intelligence matters that are classified.” Not surprisingly, Iranian officials have said they would not return the platform, which is believed to be a Lockheed Martin-built RQ-170 Sentinel, reported ABC News. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta told reporters Monday it’s difficult to know “just frankly how much [the Iranians are] going to be able to get from having obtained those parts,” reported the Associated Press. Also addressing the issue on Monday, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said the US government’s “formal request for the return of our lost equipment” is consistent with how the United States would act with “any government around the world.” She added, “Given Iran’s behavior to date, we do not expect them to comply.” (Obama-al Maliki transcript) (Clinton-Hague transcript)