Tags: China | usaf | china | grim reaper patch

US Air Force Grim Reaper Patch Riles China

drones fly through air
An MQ-9 Reaper remotely piloted aircraft (RPA) flies by during a training mission at Creech Air Force Base on Nov.  17, 2015, in Indian Springs, Nevada. (Isaac Brekken/Getty Images)

By    |   Thursday, 01 October 2020 05:58 PM

An Air Force patch depicting a Reaper drone flying over China riled a state media outlet in the Communist country, Stars and Stripes reported Thursday.

The patch, which also features a skeletal grim reaper carrying a scythe, was worn by airmen participating in an exercise last month involving three of MQ-9 Reaper drones deployed to Naval Air Station Point Mugu, California, from Holloman Air Force Base, New Mexico.

A photograph of airmen wearing the patch, which includes an outline of a map of China, appeared in the Sept. 24 edition of Air Force Magazine

China was infuriated.

“This is an extremely arrogant provocation,” China’s Global Times newspaper railed. “This is a move to further stir hostilities between Chinese and American societies and an extortion against China. The US military is using the drones and patches to stimulate the imagination and create images of China and the US going to war.”

The state media outlet on Sept. 19 posted a video issued by the Chinese air force showing nuclear-capable bombers carrying out a simulated attack on what appears to be Andersen Air Force Base on Guam.

Patches depicting potential adversaries have a history in the Air Force, Stars and Stripes reported. In February, members of the 18th Aggressor Squadron out of Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska, wore red and black patches showing a Soviet-era hammer and sickle over a palm tree while participating in drills on Guam, the military news outlet reported.

The squadron's mission involves playing the role of enemy air forces during training.

“China will shoot down incoming US warplanes, no matter they are unmanned or manned,” the Global Times warned in its report. “If those planes cause actual damage to Chinese islands and reefs, we will strike the platforms and bases from which those planes take off.”

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An Air Force patch depicting a Reaper drone flying over China riled a state media outlet in the Communist country, Stars and Stripes reported Thursday....
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Thursday, 01 October 2020 05:58 PM
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