A White House official admitted that the “Chinese spy balloon” probably wasn’t.
Meaning the Pentagon spent time and money shooting down a benign object which was probably an object that was “operated privately for commercial or research purposes.”
National security spokesperson John Kirby told reports: “We haven’t seen any indication or anything that points specifically to the idea that these three objects were part of the [People’s Republic of China’s] spying program, or that they were definitively involved in external intelligence collection efforts.”
The Washington Post reported soon after the incident that the balloons resembled commonly-used weather devices and that they would not offer any surveillance that satellite images could not offer. Still, the “spy balloon” narrative got carried away…get it!?
Kirby did say that they posed a risk to civilian air traffic so in that way, it was helpful to shoot them down.
Now Moldova and Romania both say that they sent up military jets to shoot down “balloon-like” objects too.