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Tipsheet

'Biden Is Working Hard to Downplay' Chinese Spy Balloon Incident to Keep Relationship With China Warm

AP Photo/Patrick Semansky

The Biden Administration is trying to downplay the significance of the Chinese spy balloon that flew over the U.S. last week, claiming that it is not a “major breach” to the country. 

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However, critics are calling out the president for his lack of urgency.

Washington Post columnist Josh Regin believes the Biden Administration is “working hard to downplay” the Chinese spy balloon incident “because they want to resume their previously pursued path of warming U.S.-China relations and they want to get the visitors back on track, and they want to minimize the impact of this crisis.”

Biden was reportedly informed about the balloon heading towards the U.S. months before being spotted. However, it wasn’t until February 5 that the U.S. Military shot down the balloon, three days after its presence became public. 

Regin pointed out three things that troubled him about the incident, questioning the Biden Administration’s transparency with the public. 

The Biden Administration claimed the balloon didn’t record anything valuable. However, Regin noted that most of it is at the bottom of the ocean, so how could the administration know if it did? 

“I find a bit troubling with the Biden administration’s message on this frankly is that the message, oh, we’re pretty sure they didn’t get anything good…most of the thing is still at the bottom of the ocean. So, how can they say that? Regin asked. 

Another thing Regin said is problematic is the fact that the “[Biden Administration] says they waited ten days to shoot [the balloon] down so they could aid recovery efforts. Well, again, the thing’s at the bottom of the ocean, most of it. They got the nylon but not the electronics.”

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He also had a problem when the administration defended China’s president about knowing or not knowing about the surveillance balloon.

“[The Biden Administration’s] statements deserve some scrutiny. For example, how can they say that Xi Jinping may have known? The other way to say that is that he may not have known. Or, in other words, they don’t know… And, in the end, it doesn’t matter because he’s responsible for what his military does,” Regin said. 

In an interview earlier this week, Biden answered 'no' when asked if relations between Washington and the CCP have taken a “big hit” following the balloon incident. 

"Look, I made it real clear to Xi Jinping that we’re going to compete fully with China, but we’re not looking for conflict,” Biden said. “And and that’s been the case so far."

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