It is difficult to keep the Biden administration’s stories straight on the suspected Chinese surveillance balloon, Rep. Mike Waltz, R-Fla., told Newsmax.
The Biden administration has tried to spin the incident by saying three such alleged surveillance balloons from China transited the U.S. during the Trump administration, and because the Trump White House did not do anything about it, it is not a big deal about how the Biden administration handled things.
But on Monday, Air Force Gen. Glen VanHerck, head of U.S. North American Aerospace Defense Command and Northern Command, said the military did not detect previous spy balloons over the U.S. and called it an “awareness gap.”
“That’s a very different thing,” Waltz told “Spicer & Co.” “Somewhere in between there, we need to figure out if the military knew, they didn’t know, and if they knew, who did they tell within the Trump White House?
“The more this goes on, the more confused everyone is.”
Waltz, a member of the House Armed Services and Intelligence committees, said he also was confused by the Pentagon saying the balloon had no greater surveillance capability than any of China’s satellites, but then the Biden administration said the long wait to shoot it down safely over water gave them an opportunity to study the capabilities of the balloon.
“We heard the Pentagon say that it wasn’t that much better than [China’s] satellites,” Waltz said. “Clearly, the Chinese believed it was far better than their satellites. Again, they’re talking out of both sides of their mouth, saying, ‘no big deal, we can wait, but oh, because we wait, we can gather all of this valuable intelligence on this sophisticated surveillance tool.’
“Which is it? It wasn’t that big of a deal and didn’t need to be shot down, or we got all of this sophisticated intel? Which one? You can’t have it both ways.”
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