The technique the administration chose — accuse, condemn, evict — has been used before. And, so far, there is scant evidence that it has limited the cyberattacks and other bad behavior from America’s two greatest rivals for influence and power around the world, China and Russia.
Officers of the Chinese People’s Liberation Army were indicted in 2014 for an extensive effort to bore inside American companies. The result was an impressive “Wanted” poster by the F.B.I., but six years later none of them have been apprehended to stand trial in the United States on charges of looting some of America’s biggest companies.
Two years ago, 12 Russian intelligence operatives were indicted by Robert S. Mueller III, the special counsel who investigated both Moscow and President Trump. They have also evaded trial. The president closed two Russian diplomatic facilities that the United States said were dens of spies operating under diplomatic cover, and ordered more evictions.
Yet the hacking and the disinformation operations have proceeded unabated, and by some measures have accelerated.