Spy Balloon’s and Other UFO’s over the U.S

Max Smith, Journalist

In early February of this year two Chinese balloons flying over the United States were spotted, along with three other unidentified flying objects flying over our country. People around the country were outraged towards China and many became scared and angry that the Chinese government was able to get an aircraft into American airspace with such little resistance. This strange and concerning event has been the focus of international affairs and has seen relations between China and the U.S. grow worse and worse.

On February 2nd the United States Defence Department announced that it had discovered and was tracking a Chinese balloon flying over the United States. Immediately following the announcement from the Defence Department that the balloon had been discovered, the Chinese government put out a statement claiming that the balloon was simply a weather balloon that had veered off course and that there were no attempts to spy on the United States. Also, immediately after the announcement from the United States the navigation systems on the balloon started to push the balloon eastward further into the continental United States. People throughout the United States expressed outrage that the balloon was not immediately shot down by the government. People called for the balloon to be shot down and many attempted to shoot the balloon down with their own rifles, against the government’s wishes. On February 9th, a week after the balloon was first spotted it was shot down by an F-22 fighter jet. Upon recovering the balloon it was discovered that the balloon was carrying high tech communications equipment, navigation systems, and was capable of carrying a payload of a few thousand pounds. This has caused more controversy between China and the U.S. with many Americans accusing the Chinese of spying on the United States and some even saying the balloons could eventually be used to drop bombs on the United States. China has maintained that the balloon was simply for research and had gone off course with no other intentions. The United States has combated this claim revealing that they had been tracking the balloon since its launch from Hainan Island and watched as it entered American airspace on January 28th. Following that announcement the Chinese revealed they had a second balloon flying over South and Latin America.

In the days after the balloon was shot down three more unidentified objects were spotted from February 10th to the 12th. One was shot down over Alaska, another over Canada and another over Lake Huron. These objects were reported to be different from the balloon and the United States have claimed that they are not related to China at all. The lack of information around these UFOs has spawned many conspiracy theories from secret Chinese technology to Aliens invading the Earth.

Relations between the United States and China have suffered greatly as a result of this incident. America has publicly condemned China for the balloon incident and has put heavy sanctions on multiple Chinese Aerospace companies. China has clapped back condemning America for shooting down the balloon, and claiming that America has sent 10 different balloons over China in the month of January. Many Americans and other citizens of the world have grown nervous about the declining relationship between America and China as war between the two countries would be catastrophic. I talked to Harrison Labrecque, a senior at Ipswich High School who has enlisted in the Army and would be directly affected by bad relations between China and the US.  He expressed concern, as many Americans have. Harry told me “I enlisted in the Army before this started happening. I didn’t think I would be going into war; I only thought I would stay in reserves. However things could escalate and issues could arise, and the threat of war does make me nervous.” 

On the other hand many people still do believe that China has overstepped and should be punished in more extreme ways  for what they have done. “Yes I think they should be punished more than they have because they acted aggressively towards the U.S. and threatened our national security, which can’t be allowed,” Anne McLister said when I questioned her about whether she thought the world was doing enough. Many believe that China has overstepped while others, such as Harry believe a slower approach is better as to not cause an all out war. “I think there should be higher regulations for aircraft coming from China to the U.S. and higher security through the country. There shouldn’t be too much punishment towards China for the incident as it was only one balloon,” Harry told me.

This incident will still affect the future and may cause change throughout the entire world as the two biggest superpowers in the world argue. Relations between China and the U.S. change daily and the situation is incredibly volatile, but the future of our world and our lives lay in the hands of these two bickering nations.