It shouldn't matter how the code itself is created. You can code the same thing in any number of languages in any number of code types. If the kids don't know what loops are, what case statements are etc, then they'll still suck at "coding" even if you are dumping a bunch of text based functions on their head.
You are correct. Not only that, the learning objective with drag and drop might be colloquially called "coding" but in reality it might be to teach the logic of problem solving and the logic of coding using graphics, yet still having something that either works or does not work at the end of the project. Thinking logically before putting fingers to keyboard is a skill that needs to be learned - seeing the working project at the end is motivation.
Lego Mindstorms is an example of this. Drag and drop the objects, have the robot do something and then troubleshoot why it did not work (both hardware and software). Then build on success. As you become more proficient, you can solve some pretty complex problems. When the problems become too complex, you can move into a variety of actual languages to either solve a previously unsolvable problem or solve the problem in a more efficient manner.