Leaked Intel Reveals Additional Chinese Spy Balloons

Recently leaked top-secret intelligence documents have revealed information about China’s undisclosed spy balloon operations. The leak unveils that as questions persisted about the capabilities of a Chinese spy balloon that traversed the United States, intelligence officials were aware of up to four additional balloons soaring over critical military installations.

Jack Teixeira, a 21-year-old Massachusetts Air National Guard member, allegedly leaked the documents which detailed unreported incidents involving these balloons. One flew over a U.S. carrier strike group, while another crashed into the South Korean Sea. Launch dates for the balloons were not disclosed in the documents.

Although the Nimitz Carrier Strike Group was known to be in the Western Pacific in January and February, the documents did not identify which balloon had flown over the group. Furthermore, they lacked information about the specific antennas and sensors aboard the balloon that journeyed across the United States.

The National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) document dated February 15th provided the most detailed assessments of the balloons, which were named after criminals Tony Accardo, James “Whitey” Bulger, and Donald Killeen. This report divulged that Bulger-21 had traveled the globe from December 2021 through May 2022, carrying surveillance equipment.

An analysis of detailed photographs of “Killeen-23” suggested that the balloon could generate enough power to operate reconnaissance or surveillance technology, including radar capable of seeing through clouds and at night.

The Pentagon and the Office of the Director of National Intelligence have declined to comment on the documents. However, certain Chinese government officials were caught off guard when Killeen-23 entered U.S. airspace in January. The documents suggest that information about the incursion was likely compartmentalized within the Chinese military due to its lack of strong senior oversight of the surveillance balloon program.

The leak has prompted a joint FBI and Department of Justice investigation, raising questions about how Teixeira accessed these classified documents. Retired U.S. Army Lt. Col. Tony Shaffer, President of Project Sentinel, has criticized this approach, questioning why the DOJ is involved when the Pentagon has sufficient counterintelligence investigative forces.

Shaffer stated that the leaked documents present a significant threat to the United States and its allies, some of whom have started to distance themselves from the Biden administration. He argues that the administration’s inability to function cohesively has been showcased in these leaked documents, adding that President Biden’s nonchalant response to the leak reveals either a lack of understanding or concern for the damage done.

Ultimately, the leaked documents have exposed China’s undisclosed spy balloon operations and their potential threat to national security. However, how this young Air National Guard member accessed the highly classified information remains a crucial question for investigators.


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