Republicans on Sunday criticized Democratic President Joe Biden for his handling of the incident involving the Chinese balloon, which was shot down by the American army the day before after flying over the United States for several days and the remains of which are now in the operations must be salvaged at sea.
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“Having the President shoot him down across the Atlantic is a little bit like attacking the quarterback after the game is over,” Republican-elect Mike Turner, chairman of the NBC commission, lamented Sunday morning on NBC House Intelligence . The balloon “never should have been able to enter the United States and fulfill its mission,” he added.
“Why did it take so long to reveal it to Americans? ‘ Republican Senator Marco Rubio, vice chairman of the US Senate Intelligence Committee, asked him on CNN. He described the incident as “unprecedented” and believed the balloon was used by China to demonstrate it had “the capability” without the United States being “able to do anything about it.”
Mr. Biden said he gave orders on Wednesday to shoot down the balloon “as soon as possible,” which first entered American airspace over Alaska on Jan. 28, then a second time off Idaho in the northwest USA, on January 31st, which is Tuesday.
But the general public didn’t learn of its existence until Thursday, when it was over Montana. The Pentagon said it wanted to wait until the balloon was flying over the sea to launch it to avoid damage to the ground during the debris hit.
The area over which they extend after deployment off the coast of South Carolina is more than 11 kilometers, US Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg emphasized on CNN on Sunday morning. The case was “handled appropriately” by “weighing the various risks,” he defended.
The entry into American airspace of this Chinese balloon, which the Pentagon claims is a spy balloon, has fueled tensions between Washington and Beijing, prompting a last-minute visit from the head of American diplomacy, Antony Blinken , has been canceled in China.
Beijing, which claims it was a civilian plane, accused the United States of “overreacting” with violence and said it “reserves the right” to retaliate.