U.S. Sen. Jon Tester (D-MT) – the chairman of the Defense Appropriations Subcommittee — announced on Friday that his committee will hold a hearing in which it will “demand answers” from President Joe Biden regarding his handling of the Chinese spy balloon situation.
Tester’s home state of Montana has witnessed the Chinese spy balloon situation firsthand. The balloon was seen flying over Montana, including near the Malmstrom Air Force Base and the ICBM silos.
“A clear threat”
Tester announced his committee’s investigation of the Chinese spy ballon situation in a statement on Friday.
Tester said, “China’s actions are a clear threat to those values and to America’s national security, and I’m demanding answers from the Biden Administration.”
“I will be pulling people before my committee to get real answers on how this happened, and how we can prevent it from ever happening again,” he added.
Before announcing his committee’s investigation, Tester released a statement in which he made his position on the Chinese spy balloon situation clear.
“This provocation is completely unacceptable, and I am in close contact with Department of Defense and Intelligence officials,” Tester said.
He continued, “We are still waiting for real answers on how this happened and what steps the Administration took to protect our country, and I will hold everyone accountable until I get them.”
Americans, too, are also “waiting for real answers” from the Biden administration.
China’s claim versus the Pentagon’s
The communist government of China has claimed that the balloon is nothing more than a civilian weather balloon that has veered off course.
A Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson has put out a statement, saying:
Regarding the unintended entry of a Chinese unmanned airship into US airspace due to force majeure, the Chinese side has verified it and communicated it to the US side. It is a civilian airship used for research, mainly meteorological, purposes. Affected by the Westerlies and with limited self-steering capability, the airship deviated far from its planned course.
The U.S. Pentagon, however, disputes this. Rather, the Pentagon believes that the balloon is a Chinese spy balloon that was “intentionally” sent to the U.S.
Thus far, President Biden and his administration have chosen not to shoot the Chinese spy balloon down, despite the fact that it has had the opportunity to do so, considering that the balloon has been hovering over low-population areas. The Biden administration has refused to provide details about the situation, including what is informing its decision-making.
To say the least, allowing a Chinese spy balloon to hover on through without consequence is a bad look for Biden.