State Department describes what was found on Spy Balloon went down

The balloon that was discovered floating over U.S. airspace and that China claimed was only gathering meteorological data looks to have the ability to capture sensitive communications, which is not a surprise. 

State Department

A State Department spokeswoman said on Thursday that the balloon, which was found off the coast of South Carolina, featured “several antennae” and other parts that were “obviously for intelligence surveillance.” 

They said that the antennas could probably gather and geolocate communications. 

The balloon’s builder appears to have a close connection to China’s military, and it also contained solar panels that produced enough energy to “run many active intelligence collecting devices.” 

The spokesman stated, “It’s obvious that they have been rushing to justify why they breached U.S. sovereignty and still have no convincing explanation—and have found themselves on their heels.”

Other Reports, US Communications

A senior State Department official stated on Thursday that the balloon was a member of a fleet that has flown over “more than 40 nations across five continents” and “was capable of conducting signals intelligence gathering activities.”

According to the person, the Biden administration has discovered that the Chinese balloon was functioning with electronic surveillance equipment capable of monitoring US communications.

The term “signals intelligence” describes data obtained through electronic tools, such as radars and radios.

Evaluating Pieces of Balloon

Senior FBI officials said Thursday that the FBI has begun the preliminary phases of assessing the balloon fragments that have been retrieved and brought to the FBI lab in Quantico, Virginia for investigation.

The “canopy itself, the wiring, and then a very tiny number of electronics,” the insider said, “were the only evidence that was handed to FBI analysts thus far.” The official claimed analysts have not yet seen the “payload,” where you would expect to see the “lion’s share” of electronics.

The officials also stated that comprehending the balloon’s parts is essential intelligence and may serve as “critical pieces of evidence for potential future criminal charges that may be presented.”

The Pentagon has maintained that the spy balloon does not provide China capabilities beyond what they already have via spy satellites or other ways, despite the most recent information about its capabilities coming to light.

Gen. Glenn VanHerck, the head of US Northern Command and NORAD, stated on Monday, “We did not believe that it created a major collection threat above what currently exists in actionable technological methods from the Chinese.