A success for Beijing: Before it was shot down, it seems China’s spy balloon did gather intelligence about the U.S. military. The Biden administration had claimed otherwise.
In February, a spy balloon hovered over the U.S. It was suspected to have been sent by China. The U.S. shot down the mysterious flying object, which was full of cameras. The Biden administration insisted that confidential information had not fallen into the hands of Beijing. But that is likely not true.
The Scandal Surrounding the Spy Balloon: It Seems China Did Gather Intelligence about the US Military, Despite the Balloon Being Shot Down
Evidently, China was quite capable of gathering sensitive information from U.S. military sites. This was reported by the NBC News network, which cited senior U.S. officials. According to this report, Beijing’s spy balloon flew over various locations in a kind of figure-8 formation. “The intelligence China collected was mostly from electronic signals, which can be picked up from weapons systems or include communications from base personnel,” the report said.
These statements could not be independently verified. The White House has not yet issued an official comment; however, the report may well fuel debate about President Joe Biden’s actions. As recently as February, he gave the impression that the repercussions of the incident were minor. While he strongly criticized the Chinese government in connection with the spy balloon, he continually stressed that a data breach was not possible.
Aerial Object Shot Down: Spy Balloon Strains Relations between the US and China
The balloon flew over the U.S. for a week before the U.S. administration decided to shoot it down. At this point, the aerial object was flying over open water. The balloon was equipped with cameras and antennas, and its purpose seems to have indeed been to spy on the U.S. The incident led to icy relations between the U.S. and China. U.S. Secretary of State Antony Blinken promptly canceled his planned trip to China. The powers that be in Beijing subsequently accused the U.S. of engaging in false “information warfare.”