Downed spy balloon leads to rise in diplomatic tensions between U.S. and China


The decision to shoot up the Great White Room of the White House sparked an angry reaction from Beijing.
The Chinese spy balloon may have gone down. But diplomatic temperatures continued to rise Sunday. As officials in Beijing blasted the US decision to shoot it down.

Downed spy balloon leads to rise in diplomatic tensions between U.S. and China

China’s Defense Ministry spokesman Tan Kefei described. It as “a clear overreaction” in a statement on Sunday. Saying his country “reserves the right to use necessary means to deal. With similar situations.” In a similarly strongly worded statement. China’s foreign ministry said it was a “serious violation of international norms.”

Both statements described the balloon as a “civilian unmanned airship.” And China had before said the room was used for research and “meteorological purposes”.

The statement came after an American F-22 Raptor. Which the Pentagon called a “high-altitude surveillance balloon.” Shot down a single missile off the coast of South Carolina on Saturday afternoon. The US military will now focus on recovering parts of the ship from the wreckage field. Which spans about 7 nautical miles.

First seen over Montana, which is home to Malmstrom. Air Force Base, one of America’s three nuclear missile silo fields. The giant white orb, about the size of three school buses. Moved southeast over Kansas and Missouri at about 60,000. 65,000 feet.

Shortly after the strike, President Joe Biden told reporters. That he ordered it to be fired after being notified. Of it on Wednesday, but the Pentagon “decided that the best time to do it was when it went over the water.” Although he described Chinese suggestions of next steps as “ominous,” David Sachs. A research fellow on US-China diplomacy at the Exchange Council. On Foreign Relations think tank, said he doubted. It would do much to change relations between the two countries.

“They will issue a statement with a little bluster on it, but I don’t think China will try to respond in any way.” He said, adding that escalating the issue with the US would do little good for China. .

Beijing did not want Secretary of State Anthony Blinken to postpone his visit to China. Which was scheduled to begin on Monday, Sachs said. Blinken said Friday that he told senior Chinese diplomat Wang Yi in a phone call. That sending balloons over the United States was “an irresponsible. Act” that was “harmful to the substantive discussions we were prepared to have.” It will be the first visit by a US Secretary of State to China since 2018.

Some on Chinese social media mocked the US decision to shoot down the balloon. While others expressed outrage. Some other Huskies news outlets criticized the move. And the state-run Global Times newspaper called it “an obvious overreaction”.

Some commentators have also questioned the decision, with Jin Canrong. An expert on China-US relations at Renmin University in Beijing, China. Questioning the decision to postpone Blinken’s visit.

In a post on Chinese microblogging site Weibo, he said the visit was met with opposition within the US. Particularly from Republican lawmakers.

“It should be said that Blinken’s visit to China is not a bad thing in itself, but the atmosphere is not good.” He said, adding that the US always likes to “create a little bargaining chip for itself.” Before high-level meetings. The two countries “to force the Chinese side to give up.”

“It doesn’t work. The Chinese side stopped buying it a long time ago,” he added. Craig Singleton, a senior China fellow. At the foundation, called on the Biden administration. To reschedule the trip “until China provides a more credible. And full explanation of these latest spying allegations.” could prove problematic for Defense of Democracy, a Washington, D.C. think tank. And lobbying organization, said Saturday before the balloon was released.

“Generally expectations were low that Blinken’s visit would result in any diplomatic deliverables. And at this point, a meaningful realignment between. The two superpowers appears off the table,” he said.

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