Now that the US military has recovered the CCP’s spying balloon a lot of new information has come out.
According to Air Force General Glen D. Vanherck, commander of US Northern Command, who spoke with reporters, the balloon was “potentially carrying explosives, was 200 feet tall, weighed thousands of pounds, and its payload was the size of a jetliner.
Vanherck made his comments following a briefing by National Security Council spokesman John Kirby, who said Biden did the right thing.
“Because the president decided they wouldn’t shoot it down until he could do so safely, and that meant over water, that afforded us a terrific opportunity to gain a better understanding, to study the capabilities of this balloon,” Kirby said.
The spy balloon reportedly entered US airspace on January 28, and the President was aware of it for almost a week. Multiple reports have been made that the White House was trying to keep the balloon a secret because Secretary of State Antony Blinken had a scheduled trip to China.
Due to the balloon, the trip has been “postponed.”
Seems like any foreign nation flying explosives in our airspace without permission is a pretty big deal… like war kind of big. https://t.co/5dfd4Z3cZD
— Carpe Donktum🔹 (@CarpeDonktum) February 6, 2023
Many are asking why China would use a balloon. Well, Breaking Points host Saagar Enjeti pointed to a July 2022 report showing that the Pentagon is also using balloons.
The Pentagon is working on a new plan to rise above competition from China and Russia: balloons.
The high-altitude inflatables, flying at between 60,000 and 90,000 feet, would be added to the Pentagon’s extensive surveillance network and could eventually be used to track hypersonic weapons.
The idea may sound like science fiction, but Pentagon budget documents signal the technology is moving from DoD’s scientific community to the military services.
“High or very high-altitude platforms have a lot of benefit for their endurance on station, maneuverability and also flexibility for multiple payloads,” said Tom Karako, senior fellow for the International Security Program and Missile Defense Project director at the Center for Strategic and International Studies.
The Pentagon continues to invest in these projects because the military could use the balloons for various missions.
According to the report, the Pentagon invested $3.8 million on balloon plans in 2022 and is expected to spend another $27.1 million in 2023.
That’s one way the balloons could be useful — augmenting expensive satellites in tracking the missiles. The teardrop-shaped balloons harvest complex data and navigate using AI algorithms.
Added to the report is another reason why the Pentagon loves balloons.
DoD is also working to use drones equipped with “stratospheric payloads” along with balloons to track moving ground targets, provide communications and intercept electronic signals. The idea is for the technology to transition to the Army and U.S. Special Operations Command, according to budget documents.
It would seem that the hot air balloon is back in style and not in a good way.