House Republican blasts Biden administration behind closed doors briefing on Chinese spy balloon
A member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee was not pleased with what he heard Monday during a closed-door briefing about the Chinese spy balloon incident from senior officials in the Biden administration.
Rep. Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) called the briefing “non-specific, inadequate and backward-looking,” according to Fox News Digital, and further told the outlet that officials had not presented any evidence to support defense officials’ claims over the weekend at Three similar flights took place when former President Donald Trump was in office.
“What I took away from that briefing confirmed that this administration, rather than the previous ample warning of an escalating Chinese spy program, failed to act and has now humiliated that country on the world stage,” Issa told Fox News Digital.
The Pentagon informed the public on Thursday that a Chinese spy balloon had entered US airspace, with officials noting the device was first spotted off the coast of Alaska five days earlier.
The Biden administration allowed the balloon to continue its journey across the US mainland and only shot it down off the coast of South Carolina on Saturday.
Shortly after the balloon was shot down by a US fighter jet, an anonymous senior defense official told reporters that similar Chinese balloons “passed briefly through the continental United States at least three times during the previous administration, and once that we know of early in this one.” Administration.”
The claim has been vehemently denied by several former Trump administration officials and by Trump himself.
Air Force Gen. Glen D. VanHerck, the head of the North American Aerospace Defense Command, told reporters Monday that his agency never discovered the assaults.
“I will tell you that we have not discovered these [previous] threats. And that’s a knowledge gap in the area that we need to address,” said VanHerck.
Later, VanHerck and NSC spokesman John Kirby clarified that US intelligence agencies had used “forensics” to identify the incursions by Chinese spy ships only after President Biden took office in January 2021.
Kirby said the Biden administration will offer secret briefings to some senior Trump officials about the three balloons and how the intelligence community discovered their existence so late.
Ric Grenell, Trump’s former deputy director of national intelligence, told the Post Monday that he would not accept such a briefing.
“They are trying to justify their inaction,” Grenell told the Post. “If they believe a bureaucrat has failed to inform politicians about a threat to national security, they should demand that the DOJ prosecute the individuals for treason — if the individuals even exist.”
https://nypost.com/2023/02/07/house-republican-blasts-biden-administrations-closed-door-briefing-on-chinese-spy-balloon/ House Republican blasts Biden administration behind closed doors briefing on Chinese spy balloon