Biden Desires Sharper Restrictions For Unidentified Aerial Objects- Following three weeks of high-stakes drama spurred by the discovery of a suspected Chinese spy balloon spanning much of the country, President Joe Biden announced on Thursday that the U.S. is establishing “sharper guidelines” to detect, monitor, and possibly shoot down unidentified aerial objects.
After the United States shot down the Chinese balloon and three additional objects, which Vice President Joe Biden said the United States now believes are most likely “benign” objects launched by private businesses or research institutions, the president instructed national security adviser Jake Sullivan to head an “interagency team” to review the United States practices.
Biden said he didn’t feel wrong about downing the three unidentified objects. Still, he hoped the new regulations would make it easier to “discern between those likely to pose safety and security issues that demand action and those that do not.”
He continued, citing the legal justification for the downings—that the objects, flying between 20,000 and 40,000 feet, posed a slight risk to civilian planes—by saying, “Make no mistake, if any object presents a threat to the safety and security of the American people, I will take it down.”
The shooting down of the Chinese surveillance aircraft marked the first known instance of a lawless object being shot down in American airspace during a time of peace. A week later, it happened three more times. The shootdown, according to Biden, sent a “clear message, the breach of our sovereignty is intolerable,” but he said he aimed to keep the lines of communication open with Beijing.
Biden harshly blasted China’s spying program. As the balloon passed over the United States, Secretary of State Antony Blinken decided to postpone his initial trip there; a new meeting with his Chinese counterpart has yet to be set.
But I make no apologies for popping that balloon, Biden said, adding, “I anticipate meeting with President Xi, and I hope we can get to the bottom of this.”
To avoid “giving a roadmap to our opponents to try to bypass our defenses,” Biden said the regulations would stay hidden.
Rep. Jim Himes of Connecticut, the top Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, predicted that in the future, the United States would keep its radar systems set to detect both fast-moving planes and other potential intruders as well as slow-moving balloons.
However, he claimed that by the end of Tuesday, he had persuaded White House representatives that security forces would need to adjust their response when they spotted balloons of unknown origin. He asserted that the White House’s deployment of fighters, tankers, and special troops “will not be a scalable solution to every piece of airborne garbage.”
These reports raise all sorts of questions about competence and credibility at the White House … to the extent we expect either at this point. When ground observers in Montana first spotted China’s spy balloon, Joe Biden and his team made it seem as though it had taken them pic.twitter.com/F3hykhCB94
— theconservativeworld.com (@TheConsworld) February 15, 2023
Tensions between the U.S. and China have increased due to the Chinese balloon. Blinken will be traveling to the Munich Security Conference on Thursday, and it has been suggested that he may use the occasion to meet Wang Yi, a senior Chinese foreign policy official who will also be present.
Regarding the objects that were shot down on Friday off the coast of Alaska, Saturday over Canada, and Sunday over Lake Huron, Biden has mainly remained mum. The White House sincerely stated on Monday that there was no evidence of “aliens or extraterrestrial activity.”
By Wednesday, U.S. officials claimed they were still searching for the objects’ debris, but they anticipated that none of the three were connected to surveillance operations. According to White House national security spokesperson John Kirby, “the intelligence community is evaluating as a leading explanation that they could just be balloons related to some commercial or benign objective.”
According to Kirby, no state or private organization has asserted ownership of any artifacts. It doesn’t seem like the American government ran them.
Questions regarding the initial balloon remain unanswered, including whether it was capable of spying and sending messages as it passed over critical military facilities in the United States. According to a U.S. official, American intelligence thought it had been headed in the direction of Guam at first.
According to the official, who spoke to The Associated Press under anonymity to discuss sensitive intelligence, the U.S. tracked it for several days after it left China. According to the official, it seems to have been blown off course and eventually soared over the entire United States.
A critical hub for the U.S. Navy and Air Force in the western Pacific, Guam, has previously seen balloons and other strange things.
It’s uncertain how much control China still had over the balloon after it deviated from its intended course. It’s unclear whether Chinese forces commanded the balloon to loiter over a particular target, according to a second U.S. official, but it is possible.
After the balloon was shot down, the White House disclosed that other balloons had flown over dozens of countries on five continents and had crossed U.S. territory at least three times without the knowledge of President Donald Trump or his advisors. Kirby underlined Monday that the Biden administration was the only one to find them.