Kiggans Gets Out Over Her Skies On Balloon
It must have seemed so simple.
The Chinese Communist Party sent a surveillance balloon over American territory. Washington seemed unwilling to respond. It was an open goal – and Jen Kiggans took the shot. The new Congresswoman joined the GOP bandwagon on Chinese spy balloon, only to see the wheels come off. In the end, she ate her foot. The open goal was an own goal.
As the balloon was flying across the U.S., Kiggans put out a statement of outrage. When the military shot the balloon down, she kept at it.
Thankful for the military men & women from @usairforce Base Langley who shot down the spy balloon. It is wholly unacceptable that it was allowed to cross the U.S & that the @WhiteHouse reportedly tried to hide this blatant security failure. Congress will be demanding answers.
Whatever Congress may demand, the answers came quickly … and were nothing like what Kiggans implied.
U.S. officials first detected the balloon and its payload on January 28 when it entered U.S. airspace near the Aleutian Islands. The balloon traversed Alaska, Canada and re-entered U.S. airspace over Idaho. “President Biden asked the military to present options and on Wednesday President Biden gave his authorization to take down the Chinese surveillance balloon as soon as the mission could be accomplished without undue risk to us civilians under the balloon’s path,” said a senior defense official speaking on background. “Military commanders determined that there was undue risk of debris causing harm to civilians while the balloon was overland.”
Long before the shoot down, U.S. officials took steps to protect against the balloon’s collection of sensitive information, mitigating its intelligence value to the Chinese. The senior defense official said the recovery of the balloon will enable U.S. analysts to examine sensitive Chinese equipment. “I would also note that while we took all necessary steps to protect against the PRC surveillance balloon’s collection of sensitive information, the surveillance balloon’s overflight of U.S. territory was of intelligence value to us,” the official said. “I can’t go into more detail, but we were able to study and scrutinize the balloon and its equipment, which has been valuable.”
In other words, not only was the Biden Administration tracking the balloon, it was blocking its ability to get intel for the CCP, while at the some time gathering intel for us before it was destroyed over the ocean.
Oh, and then there’s this.
The official said Chinese balloons briefly transited the continental United States at least three times during the prior administration.
We’ll see if Kiggans is willing to admit to the mistake … or jump on the fake news bandwagon.