Air Force Gen. Glen D. VanHerck, head of US Northern Command, has spoken publicly on the Chinese Communist Party’s dangers to the United States of America.
During a press conference, VanHerck disclosed that the ‘weather’ balloon, which had been suspected of being a spying device, was really carrying explosives to explode itself, adding a stunning new degree of urgency to the story.
The weapon was “200 feet tall, weighing thousands of pounds, and its payload was the size of a jetliner,” he said.
“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,” he told reporters on a call.
“His description followed a briefing by National Security Council spokesman John Kirby, who defended President Joe Biden’s decision to wait and shoot down the Chinese craft until it was over South Carolina’s coastline on Saturday,” the Daily Mail reported. “Biden ordered the balloon shot down Wednesday, but the U.S. military held off until Saturday, with the Air Force sending an F-22 fighter jet armed with an AIM-9X Sidewinder missile to do the job.”
“Chinese spy balloon carried EXPLOSIVES to destroy itself,” Daily Mail Online (@MailOnline) posted on Twitter on February 6, 2023.
Martin Walsh of Conservative Brief reported on further developments in the payload story:
A former top US Army general slammed President Joe Biden’s handling of the Chinese surveillance balloon spotted traversing the upper and central United States last week.
Former US Army Vice Chief of Staff and retired four-star General Jack Keane chastised Biden for not acting sooner, allowing the balloon to float across the country until having it shot down off the coast of South Carolina on Saturday.
Keane made his comments after the balloon landed in the Atlantic Ocean during an interview with Fox News.
“Remember, this was approaching the United States over water,” he said. “It was approaching the Aleutian Islands over water. And we had plenty of opportunity to take it down then. And that’s when it should have happened. We had to be tracking it from mainland China across the Pacific Ocean, and we had plenty of warning to put together an operation that we are conducting now on the east coast that should have been done there.”
Here is a partial transcript of what unfolded during the segment:
ARTHEL NEVILLE, FOX NEWS HOST: Yeah, I heard your last point there. And I want to say, as we’re watching this exclusive coverage of this Chinese spy balloon going down there over Surfside Beach, South Carolina, if you could talk to us about what happened in terms of coordinating this to get to this point now, General Keane.
GENERAL JACK KEANE: Well, we’ve had all of our sensors watching this, you know, for some time. And certainly our military capability that was going to be involved got alerted. People have been planning it likely for a couple of days. I’m assuming the president, you know, made a decision within the last 24 hours to take this out. They probably presented him with a number of options of where the best place to do it, certainly heading to the East Coast, which is considerably more populated than Montana was. It was probably ruled out that they would do anything over land. If they weren’t willing to do it over Montana, they’re certainly not going to do it on the East coast of the United States or in transit to the East Coast. And they’re taking advantage of obviously doing this safely in terms of civilians.
More on this story via The Republic Brief:
And it’s not a complicated operation, I don’t believe, for the United States military to take a balloon moving at the speed it’s moving at and bring it down. So the coordination to do that and the intelligence to bring all of that together is not a major problem for us at all. Now, can we recover the sensor package? That’s going to be iffy, given the size of this thing and how much it weighs. But nonetheless, we finally did what we should have done at the beginning. Remember, this was approaching the United States over water. It was approaching the Aleutian Islands over water. CONTINUE READING…