“The intelligence community’s considering as a leading explanation that these could just be balloons tied to some commercial or benign purpose,” White House National Security Council strategic communication coordinator John Kirby told reporters on Tuesday.
During Tuesday’s press briefing, White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre defended Biden’s decision-making process concerning the three flying objects that were taken down on the President’s order last week.
The intelligence community considers the three flying objects “benign,” according to Karine Jean-Pierre.
Asked if the President might have “overreacted” by shooting down the flying objects, Jean-Pierre replied that, per the recommendation of the Pentagon, the President decided to take down these objects since they were at an altitude that posed threats to civilian aircraft.
“I don’t think the President should be embarrassed because he took action to make sure that the civilian airspace was safe. The President did everything in his power to defend our airspace,” noted Jean-Pierre.
However, some believe that the President decided too hastily to take down the three flying objects following criticism that the administration should have taken action against the Chinese surveillance balloon sooner than it should have.
“Completely different operations and situations with the Chinese balloon,” pushed back Jean-Pierre.
According to the Press Secretary, the intelligence community tracked down the path of the Chinese balloon, and action was taken as soon as it was possible to shoot the balloon down.
While following the balloon’s path, according to the White House, the team collected data on the flying object, protected American data’s security on the ground, and learned from the balloon it was stated at the briefing.
Moreover, the Air Force waited until the balloon reached an area where the government could recover the device’s debris, stated Jean-Pierre.
Currently, the government is conducting an intensive operation to retrieve the debris from all four flying objects. However, due to weather conditions, American forces have not yet been able to recover significant materials.
When asked if the President has any plans to address the public on the flying objects, Jean-Pierre replied by giving a simple “No.” However, she added that the White House would continue to share as much information as possible.
“We want to make sure that the American people understand that there is no need to panic,” added Jean-Pierre
Currently, Jake Sullivan oversees an intelligence team studying the flying objects events and developing protocols for moving forward with high-altitude objects in American airspace. According to Jean-Pierre, the protocols are set to be released later this week.
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