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The Chinese spy balloon that President Joe Biden allowed to fly over the U.S. earlier this year was reportedly carrying American-made hardware to capture reconnaissance imagery.
The Wall Street Journal reported that the multiple federal agencies discovered that the balloon was “crammed with commercially available U.S. gear, some of it for sale online, and interspersed with more specialized Chinese sensors and other equipment to collect photos, video and other information to transmit to China.”
The report also said that the spy balloon had large solar panels to power it and that it was able to capture “radar data.”
China has threatened the U.S. against making details from its investigation into the balloon public, claiming that they will be forced to respond in a harsh manner.
The Biden administration has so far cowered to China’s demands and has not shared details from the investigation with the public, even though the U.S. has a history of doing so with other nations.
Republican senators have called out the Biden administration over its refusal to show the public what China was flying over sensitive U.S. military installations.
In a letter to White House earlier this month, the senators wrote in-part:
In your State of the Union address this year, you promised the American people that you would protect the United States from the PRC’s threats to our sovereignty. While four months have passed since a Chinese surveillance balloon was allowed to fly across the United States, your administration has yet to provide the American people a full accounting of how this spy platform was allowed to traverse across sovereign U.S. territory, what the balloon carried, and what it collected during its mission. Your administration has also not taken appropriate steps to hold the PRC accountable for this flagrant violation of U.S. sovereignty. As such, we urge you to immediately direct all relevant administration officials to release information, as appropriate, to the American public regarding the Chinese spy balloon.
The senators who signed the letter were Kevin Cramer (R-ND), Deb Fischer (R-NE), Tom Cotton (R-AR), Mike Rounds (R-SD), Joni Ernst (R-IA), Dan Sullivan (R-AK), Rick Scott (R-FL), Tommy Tuberville (R-AL), Eric Schmitt (R-MO), Ted Budd, (R-NC), Markwayne Mullin (R-OK), Jim Risch (R-ID), John Cornyn (R-TX), James Lankford (R-OK), Susan Collins (R-ME), Jerry Moran (R-KS), and Bill Hagerty (R-TN).