Iran is saying they shot down a U.S. spy drone that supposedly flew into their airspace. Just how long are we going to put up with this nonsense? First they send Islamic terrorists into Iraq to make trouble and now they're shooting down our planes? In another time, this would amount to a declaration of war.The first thing that ought to be noted is that the US Military is denying any such shootdown, and since the claim was made by some otherwise unheard-of MP for publication in Iran's state-controlled newspapers, it is in all probability nothing more than propaganda, and poorly-done propaganda at that.*
However, assuming it's true for just a moment, does it amount to a declaration of war? Let me ask it this way: if we shot down an Iranian plane overflying American territory, would they have any casus belli? If they were violating our territorial airspace, I suggest that we would be well within our rights to shoot them down. If that's the case, then we truly have nothing to complain about. We had such a plane shot down over the USSR once (it was called the U-2 Incident**) and Old Ike didn't go crying on the radio about how those mean old Soviets were blowing our hardware out of the sky and he didn't apologize, either. He just built better hardware.
Note to Neal: if you break into somebody's house and they shoot you, you don't get to complain. If you overfly someone else's country and they shoot you down, you don't get to complain. Guys with funny beards have property rights, too, and if we're going to ignore them, we just need to build better planes.
* At the very least al-Reuters or AFP should have taken pictures of a burning tire dump so they could pretend it was a plane.
** Not to be confused with the U-2 Indecent, which wasn't, so much.