Secretary of State Anthony Blinken appeared on the networks Sunday to defend Joe Biden’s decision to fly a Chinese spy balloon over military installations and nuclear silos.
Blinken confirmed that China’s spy balloons were engaged in active surveillance of “very sensitive military sites”.
A Chinese spy balloon floated in US skies for 7 days straight with the full approval of Joe Biden.
A high-altitude surveillance balloon was spotted over the Aleutian Islands a few weeks ago.
Biden initially refused to shoot the balloon and let it soar over military installations.
The Pentagon eventually shot the balloon down over the Atlantic Ocean.
The State Department recently said that China’s spy balloons, which are 200 feet tall and carry a payload the size of a jet airliner, were equipped to collect communications signals.
The balloon was equipped with antennas and solar panels to generate power to drive “multiple active intelligence-gathering sensors,” the NY Times reported.
Blinken confirmed on Sunday that the spy balloon was engaged in active surveillance.
As the balloon flew east, “it tried to observe very sensitive military sites. In some cases, it returns to them as it moves eastward,” Blinken.
Earlier: Secretary of State Blinken said there was “no doubt” the Chinese balloon was for “surveillance” purposes.@secblinken: As it flew eastward, “it attempted to observe highly sensitive military sites. In some cases, it returned to them as it moved eastward. pic.twitter.com/IZuWhb68Yu
— Meet the Press (@MeetThePress) February 19, 2023
CBS News reported last Tuesday night that U.S. intelligence had spotted the spy balloon rising off China’s southern coast and tracked it for about a week before it entered U.S. airspace.
“US intelligence saw the Chinese spy balloon take off near China’s southern coast, meaning the US military had been tracking it for nearly a week before it entered US airspace. Longer than originally known,” CBS News reported.
“What they saw was this balloon heading east from China to Guam and Hawaii, but then it took a sharp north turn—a beeline for Alaska!” CBS reported.