Spy Balloon sent by China Shot Down


Teia Nash

Drawing of Spy Balloon

Imagine sitting in your backyard looking up at the stars and seeing a giant white ball cross over the sky. Now think about being in South Carolina and seeing it being shot down and falling down into the water with a huge pop. Recently, a huge 30 foot long white balloon floated across the United States air space. When the balloon was spotted in Billings, Montana, 60% of people thought it was a second moon. The United States believes it was a spy balloon, and once they found out who the balloon belonged to, the questioning began.  China is saying that it was for scientific purposes to track weather patterns. It is believed they were using it to get information about the United States  military bases and weaponry. If you follow the flight pattern of the balloon, it follows most of our major military bases and military protected warfare sites. On Saturday, February 4th, per President Biden’s order the United States Air Force shot the balloon down off the East Coast near South Carolina using an F-22 Raptor.  

We’ve mentioned how the balloon went through nearly all of the United States, let’s look at why China would have the device go through Montana. Montana holds at least 150 nuclear missiles. It is public knowledge that Montana houses a major portion of the United States nuclear warfare. The military bases surround and keep watch of these weapons. 

this is a serious
breach in our relationship
with China…

United States intelligence officials believe that the recently found Chinese Balloon is a part of an extensive surveillance program that is run by the Chinese military. The surveillance program has many similar balloons. The United States does not know the exact amount of balloons, but we believe that there are at least 2 dozen other models. About half a dozen of those flights have been within United States airspace, however they haven’t been over United States territory. Over the last 7 days there have been 3 other balloons shot down by our Military Forces. Over the last several years Chinese spy balloons have been spotted across five continents.
Not all of the balloons spotted have been the same as the model shot down off the coast of South Carolina. On February 9th the FBI released photos of agents processing the balloon 

materials in Quantico, Virginia. They say it is too early to know how the device is operating and what the actual intent was.   

The United States military has been adjusting their radar to find any more “flying objects” that are similar, slower, smaller and differently shaped than the enemy aircraft and missiles. The result has been a lot of never-done shootdowns of objects including on Sunday, February 12th, of an octagonal structure that had floated from Montana to Lake Huron where it was shot down. They are using sidewinder missiles to take down the structures, which is costing over hundreds of thousands of dollars. They have started questioning if these objects have been around all along. United States officials have acknowledged that they are hard to find. 

This isn’t the first time China has tried to get information on the United States. On Monday, February 13th, China accused the United States of flying multiple spy balloons over their airspace over 10 times with no permission from the beginning of 2022. Wang Wenbin, a spokesperson for the Chinese Ministry of Foreign Affairs, said that “It’s not uncommon for US balloons to frequently take the opportunity to carry out close-up reconnaissance against China.” They also had said the United States was using warships and planes to gather more information on China about 657 times since the start of the last year. Wang claimed that all of this was proof that the United States is no doubt the “world’s largest surveillance habitual offender.” 

John Kirby, a spokesperson for the United States National Security council said this claim is not true in an interview on the MSNBC news. Recent balloons that were spotted above Montana last week have been spotted many times over the past years above Japan, India and Taiwan. China admitted the balloon was in fact theirs, but again, denied that it was to get information on the United States. 

It’s unclear why they would want to use a balloon instead of a satellite to get information. The use of balloons goes back to the Cold War, since then the United States has used hundreds of them to monitor its adversaries. This situation has put a major setback between the United states and the Chinese relations. The United States feels this is a serious breach in our relationship with China. China feels that the United States is completely overreacting and making a big deal out of nothing. Well, from China’s track record in all documented world history, they have a tendency to try and be sneaky. The United States Departments of Defense spokesman Brig. Gen. Pat Ryder stated “We believe in the importance of maintaining open lines of communication between the United States and the [People’s Republic of China] in order to responsibly manage the relationship. Lines between our militaries are particularly important in moments like this.” How does the Chinese government respond to this situation? They refused the phone conference that was to communicate openly about how we can overcome this strange situation.

There are so many speculations and theories about these balloon situations and the truth is still not clear to the public. Why would our government wait so long to shoot down these potential threats? Why is China showing so much interest in the United States? Does China have something sneaky up their sleeves? At this point everything is unclear not only to the citizens of the United States but even to our government. But, one thing that is clear is China is planning something with their massive surveillance attempts. This could mean a full war breaking out in the world, and life as we know it would never be the same.