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Tipsheet

'Unimaginable': Mike Pompeo Reacts to Claims of Chinese Spy Balloons During Trump Admin

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As Vespa reported earlier, the Biden administration has made a remarkable pivot in its narrative surrounding Chinese spy balloons, seemingly aiming to take the heat off of themselves for allowing a CCP-controlled spy craft to float its merry way across the continental United States. 

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In this iteration of the Biden blame-game, his administration is claiming that there were multiple Chinese spy balloons that drifted over the United States during President Trump's time in office, but U.S. officials refuse to say how they know this despite saying the balloons they say transited the country between 2017 and 2021 did so undetected. 

That is, the Biden administration is claiming very real Chinese spy balloons were not noticed years ago, we know they were there while Trump was president, but we can't tell you how we know. Just trust the administration that told us a drone strike in Kabul killing an aid worker and seven innocent children was a "righteous" strike.

Well, numerous senior Trump administration officials have already refuted the Biden administration's claims of at least three Chinese spy balloons prowling America's skies in recent memory. On Monday, Mike Pompeo — who served as CIA director and Secretary of State during President Trump's term — added his voice to the discussion. 

"I certainly never became aware that there was a three-bus-size floating device coming across our country for five days — either as CIA director or Secretary of State," Pompeo explained. "I've talked to others who were on my teams, they don't know anything about it either," he added.

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"I'm completely confounded about what they're speaking about and frankly, it looks like an effort to deflect from what was a disastrous handful of days," Pompeo continued of why the Biden administration has conveniently just figured things out to make the claim that the spy balloons are nothing new. 

"It seems unimaginable to me that someone on my team working over at the Pentagon or the CIA and State — we have liaison officers someone in the political chain of command over at the Department of Defense — it seems unimaginable that somehow this wouldn't have gotten to the political leadership in the White House or State Department or the CIA," Pompeo continued of the unlikely nature of Chinese spy balloons being noticed but never disclosed to the Trump administration. "I can't figure out how that happened," Pompeo said. "If it did, someone needs to explain it to me and to the American public as well."

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At this point, based on the Biden administration's arguments, there are two apparent scenarious to choose from. The first is that the Biden administration's claims about previous Chinese spy balloons are entirely false, made up to distract from criticism hitting slow-to-act Biden. The second, even more concerning option, is that the military was aware of Chinese spy balloons violating U.S. airspace, but kept the discovery a secret from the President of the United States and his cabinet.

The first option, Biden's admin lying, wouldn't be too dissimilar from previous falsehoods we've heard over the last two years. Pledges that there would not be a vaccine mandate, that Afghanistan would not fall quickly to the Taliban, that the U.S.-Mexico border is secure...the list goes on and on. But if Pentagon brass conspired to withhold information from the commander in chief and his national security aides, there's a whole new can of worms about to be cracked open. 

If the latter ends up being true, it's worth remembering that General Mark Milley, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, was reported to have "reassured China's People's Liberal Army General Li Zuocheng that he would give the communist country a heads up if President Donald Trump launched an attack in the final months of his presidency," as Katie explained when the revelations came to light in a book in 2021. Milley even admitted to these and other regular conversations with CCP defense officials in congressional testimony. So, Milley back-channeled with his Chinese counterparts "in a series of reported phone calls and reassured Li he would stand between Trump and an attack on Chinese assets." Hmm...does a Chinese spy balloon count as a Chinese asset? 

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