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    mickeyratmickeyrat up my ass, like Chadwick was up his Posts: 36,333

     
    US says China balloon could collect intelligence signals
    By MATTHEW LEE and ERIC TUCKER
    47 mins ago

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The China balloon shot down by the U.S. was equipped to detect and collect intelligence signals as part of a huge, military-linked aerial surveillance program that targeted more than 40 countries, the Biden administration declared Thursday, citing imagery from American U-2 spy planes.

    A fleet of balloons operates under the direction of the People's Liberation Army and is used specifically for spying, outfitted with high-tech equipment designed to gather sensitive information from targets across the globe, the U.S. said. Similar balloons have sailed over five continents, according to the administration.

    A statement from a senior State Department official offered the most detail to date linking China’s military to the balloon that was shot down by the U.S. last weekend over the Atlantic Ocean. The public details outlining the program's scope and capabilities were meant to refute China’s persistent denials that the balloon was used for spying, including a claim Thursday that U.S. accusations about the balloon amount to “information warfare."

    On Capitol Hill, the House voted unanimously to condemn China for a “brazen violation” of U.S. sovereignty and efforts to “deceive the international community through false claims about its intelligence collection campaigns.” Republicans have criticized President Joe Biden for not acting sooner to down the balloon, but both parties' lawmakers came together on the vote, 419-0.

    In Beijing, before the U.S. offered its new information, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Mao Ning repeated her nation's insistence that the large unmanned balloon was a civilian meteorological airship that had blown off course and that the U.S. had “overreacted” by shooting it down.

    “It is irresponsible,” Mao said. The latest accusations, she said, “may be part of the U.S. side’s information warfare against China.”

    Underscoring the tensions, China’s defense minister refused to take a phone call from Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin to discuss the balloon issue on Saturday, the Pentagon said. Secretary of State Antony Blinken canceled a planned weekend trip to Beijing.

    The U.S. flatly contradicted China's version of events, saying that imagery of the balloon collected by American U-2 spy planes as it crossed the country showed that it was “capable of conducting signals intelligence collection” with multiple antennas and other equipment designed to upload sensitive information and solar panels to power them.

    Jedidiah Royal, the U.S. assistant defense secretary for the Indo-Pacific, told a Senate Appropriations subcommittee that the military has “some very good guesses” about what intelligence China was seeking. More information was expected to be provided in a classified setting.

    Senior FBI officials who briefed reporters on the condition of anonymity under ground rules set by the bureau said just a few pieces of the balloon had arrived at the FBI’s Quantico, Virginia, lab for investigation. So far, investigators have parts of the balloon canopy, wiring, and what one official called “a very small amount of electronics.” The official said it was “very early for us to assess what the intent was and how the device was operating.”

    According to two U.S. officials, the balloon recovery efforts were temporarily suspended on Thursday due to high seas. They said some balloon debris was intact on the ocean floor and divers had recovered potentially high-value equipment over the past day and a half.

    Much of the debris is concentrated in two separate sections of an area 15 football fields long and 15 fields across, according to the officials who spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the collection process.

    The State Department official, providing details to reporters by email, also on condition of anonymity, said an analysis of the balloon debris was “inconsistent” with China’s explanation that it was a weather balloon that went off course. The U.S. is reaching out to countries that have also been targeted, the official said, to discuss the scope of the Chinese surveillance program, and is looking into potential action that “supported the balloon’s incursion into U.S. airspace.”

    The official said the U.S. has confidence that the manufacturer of the balloon shot down on Saturday has “a direct relationship with China’s military and is an approved vendor of the” army. The official cited information from an official PLA procurement portal as evidence for the connection between the company and the military.

    State Department spokesman Ned Price would not identify the other countries the U.S. says have also been targeted. Nor would he reveal how the U.S. knows there have been Chinese incursions over those countries' territory, saying to do so could compromise intelligence sources and methods.

    The release of new information appeared part of a coordinated administration response, with multiple officials appearing before congressional committees to face questions about the balloon.

    Testifying before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman said officials had taken “all necessary steps to protect sensitive information” and had been able to study and scrutinize the balloon and its equipment.

    “We will continue to answer the dangers posed by the PRC with determination and resolve,” Sherman said, referring to the People's Republic of China. "We will make clear to the PRC that violations of our sovereignty and the sovereignty of other countries are unacceptable.”

    At a separate Senate subcommittee hearing, lawmakers repeatedly pressed administration officials, including Pentagon military leaders, about why the balloon was not shot down over sparsely populated areas of Alaska. And they questioned whether allowing the balloon to transit such a large area set a precedent for future spying efforts by China and others.

    “It defies belief that there was not a single opportunity to safely shoot this spy balloon prior to the coast of South Carolina,” said Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine. “By the administration’s logic we would allow the Chinese to fly surveillance balloons over the Pentagon or other sensitive sites and populated areas.”

    Melissa Dalton, assistant defense secretary of Homeland Defense, and Lt. Gen. Doug Sims, director of operations for the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said the U.S. wanted to avoid any injuries or deaths from the debris field if the balloon was shot down over Alaska.

    And they added that shooting it down over the frigid, icy waters in that region would have made it more difficult and dangerous to recover the pieces for more analysis.

    “We thought before we shot,” said Sims.This is not the first time the U.S. government has publicly called out alleged activities of the People’s Liberation Army. In a first-of-its-kind prosecution in 2014, the Obama administration Justice Department indicted five accused PLA hackers of breaking into the computer networks of major American corporations in an effort to steal trade secrets.

    _____

    Associated Press writers Nomaan Merchant and Lolita C. Baldor in Washington contributed to this report.


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    Not today Sir, Probably not tomorrow.............................................. bayfront arena st. pete '94
    you're finally here and I'm a mess................................................... nationwide arena columbus '10
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    Go BeaversGo Beavers Posts: 8,729
    I didn’t know they’re still flying U-2s. 
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    Who wants one?


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    PoncierPoncier Posts: 16,373
    I didn’t know they’re still flying U-2s. 

    This weekend we rock Portland
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    Go BeaversGo Beavers Posts: 8,729
    Poncier said:
    I didn’t know they’re still flying U-2s. 

    Who outlives who, the band or the plane? 
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    The JugglerThe Juggler Behind that bush over there. Posts: 47,455
    What the hell is Fox Soul?
    chinese-happy.jpg
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    Damn you Brandon! I can't wait to hear all of the complaints of the 'gubmint destroying Sister Sarah's porch! And Maggie Three Names is going to demand answers as to why she wasn't consulted! Damn you Brandon!

    U.S. shoots down ‘high-altitude’ object over Alaska

    The United States shot down a "high-altitude" object as it flew over Alaska near the northern Canadian border on Friday, White House officials confirmed amid ongoing concerns over Chinese surveillance balloons flying over North America.

    National Security Council spokesperson John Kirby would not say if the object was a balloon or what entity owned it. He said the object, about the size of a "small car," was flying at 40,000 feet and posed a "reasonable threat" to civilian aircraft.

    President Joe Biden gave the order to shoot down the object "out of an abundance of caution" and at the Pentagon's recommendation, Kirby added.

    The incident came a week after U.S. and Canadian officials first confirmed a Chinese surveillance balloon had flown over Canada and across the continental U.S. over the course of several days. The balloon was ultimately shot down over the Atlantic Ocean on Saturday.

    Kirby said the object shot down Friday was "much, much smaller" than the Chinese balloon and was not carrying a "significant payload." Efforts are underway to recover the object, which was first detected Thursday evening.

    Pentagon spokesperson Air Force Brig. Gen. Pat Ryder said the origin and capabilities of the object won't be known until it is recovered and assessed. He was careful to not say whether the object was a balloon or had any surveillance capabilities.

    He also denied suggestions the Pentagon was bowing to political pressure by shooting this object down as soon as it was detected over Alaska. Some Republicans have criticized Biden for not ordering to shoot down the balloon sooner, which the Pentagon has defended by citing the potential risk to safety on the ground.

    "We're going to judge each of these objects on its own merits," Ryder said.

    Video: NATO chief Stoltenberg, US’ Blinken warn of growing Chinese military surveillance, threats after balloon incident

    Speaking to reporters in Washington on Friday, Defence Minister Anita Anand did not say Friday where the earlier balloon was when it first entered Canadian airspace, or what locations it passed over and for how long it was over Canada before heading south.

    The U.S. navy and coast guard are working to recover pieces of the downed balloon for analysis and they’re working to determine if it collected any intelligence from either country, Anand said.

    The balloon's sighting has reignited tensions between the U.S. and China and raised renewed fears of foreign surveillance and interference by Beijing.

    U.S. shoots down ‘high-altitude’ object over Alaska (msn.com)

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    gimmesometruth27gimmesometruth27 St. Fuckin Louis Posts: 22,271
    is the gop angry that we shot it down yet, or nah?
    There is nothing noble in being superior to your fellow man; true nobility is being superior to your former self.- Hemingway

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    mickeyratmickeyrat up my ass, like Chadwick was up his Posts: 36,333


     
    'Unidentified object' downed over Lake Huron, 3rd this week
    By COLLEEN LONG, LOLITA C. BALDOR and ZEKE MILLER
    42 mins ago

    WASHINGTON (AP) — An "unidentified object” was shot down with a missile by U.S. fighter jets Sunday over Lake Huron, and it was believed to be the same one tracked over Montana and monitored by the government beginning the night before, U.S. officials said.

    The downing comes after earlier objects in Alaska and Canada were shot out of the sky because they were flying at altitudes that posed a threat to commercial aircraft, according to the officials, who had knowledge of the downings and spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity to discuss the sensitive operations.

    U.S. and Canadian authorities had restricted some airspace over the lake earlier Sunday as planes were scrambled to intercept and try to identify the object.

    Rep. Elissa Slotkin, D-Mich., tweeted that “the object has been downed by pilots from the U.S. Air Force and National Guard.” The shootdown was confirmed by four U.S. officials.

    The news comes as U.S. officials were still trying to precisely identify the other two objects blown from the sky by F-22 fighter jets over the past two days, and were working to determine whether China was responsible as concerns escalate about what Washington says is Beijing's large-scale aerial surveillance program.

    The object shot down Saturday over the Yukon was described by U.S. officials as a balloon significantly smaller than the three school bus-size balloon hit by a missile Feb. 4 while drifting off the South Carolina coast after traversing the country. A flying object brought down over the remote northern coast of Alaska on Friday was more cylindrical and described as a type of airship.

    Both were believed to have a payload, either attached or suspended from them, according to the officials who spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity to discuss the ongoing investigation. Officials were not able to say who launched the objects and were seeking to figure out their origin.

    U.S. officials said the two more recent objects were much smaller in size, different in appearance and flew at lower altitudes than the suspected Chinese spy balloon that fell into the Atlantic Ocean after the U.S. missile strike. They said the Alaska and Canada objects were not consistent with the fleet of Chinese aerial surveillance balloons that targeted more than 40 countries, stretching back at least into the Trump administration.

    Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Sunday that on his order a U.S. fighter jet shot down an "unidentified object" that was flying high over northern Canada, acting a day after the U.S. took similar action over Alaska. (Feb. 12)

    That large white orb first appeared over the U.S. in late January, and since then Americans have been fixated on the sky above them. U.S. authorities made clear that they constantly monitor for unknown radar blips, and it is not unusual to shut down airspace as a precaution to evaluate them, but they'd also take action when necessary.

    On Sunday, the U.S. briefly closed the airspace over Lake Michigan but reopened it roughly an hour later. later.

    ___

    Associated Press writers Michael Balsamo, Ellen Knickmeyer and Tara Copp contributed to this report.


    _____________________________________SIGNATURE________________________________________________

    Not today Sir, Probably not tomorrow.............................................. bayfront arena st. pete '94
    you're finally here and I'm a mess................................................... nationwide arena columbus '10
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    brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain. Posts: 40,936
    is the gop angry that we shot it down yet, or nah?

    Won't know until they've decided if it was shot down too soon or too late. 
    Then beer bottles be flyin'!
    “The fear of death follows from the fear of life. A man [or woman] who lives fully is prepared to die at any time.”
    Variously credited to Mark Twain or Edward Abbey.













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    mickeyratmickeyrat up my ass, like Chadwick was up his Posts: 36,333


     
    Biden hosts GOP, Dem governors at White House for dinner
    By COLLEEN LONG
    Yesterday

    WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden, hosting both Republican and Democratic governors for a black-tie affair at the White House, raised his glass for a toast.

    Standing under a portrait of Abraham Lincoln, he told the people in the room to remember who they were. “We’re the United States of America. We can get big things done if we do it together.”

    “Cheers!" the crowd replied, as the clink-clink of glasses rippled about the State Dining Room.

    Biden hosted the dinner for members of the National Governors Association at the White House for the first time in his administration. It's usually a tradition, but the dinner was held last year at Mount Vernon, George Washington's Virginia estate, and virtually in 2021 because of COVID-19.

    The dinner came as federal leaders seemed as divided as ever with the new Republican majority in the House courting a risky debt ceiling showdown.

    On Saturday at the White House, though, the message was togetherness — and not just because the room was tightly packed with governors, spouses and Cabinet members. Biden and both associations' leaders, Republican Gov. Spencer Cox of Utah and Democratic Gov. Phil Murphy of New Jersey, spoke about the need to put aside the increasingly rancorous political differences in order to work together to better the nation.

    “I think when we work together it works," Biden said, adding he'd work to be a little more bipartisan and praised the work of the governors.

    The tables were set with purple velvet tablecloths (wink wink on bipartisanship), china bearing the presidential seal and large floral centerpieces in white and pink.

    Cabinet members were mixed together with governors in ball gowns, tuxedos and sparkles. Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer sat near Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo. Maryland Gov. Wes Moore and New York Gov. Kathy Hochul, both Democrats, sat near Vice President Kamala Harris. Not far away were Republican Govs. Bill Lee of Tennessee and Doug Burgum of North Dakota.

    First lady Jill Biden held a service project event earlier Saturday for spouses, but she had to skip a Friday event because she wasn’t feeling well. She tested negative for COVID-19.

    Biden, who does not drink, gave the toast with his left hand, explaining he'd been told by his grandfather that that's just what you did when you don't have alcohol in the glass. Cox, who also doesn't drink, did the same when he toasted, telling the room it was ginger ale.

    “It's symbolic to have Republicans and Democrats breaking bread together,” Cox said. “This is what is missing.”

    “And I believe that the people of our country, at least the exhausted majority, wants us to be doing more of this.”

    Cox thanked Biden and the first lady before introducing Murphy, who joked that he was definitely holding his glass in his right hand. He said their party affiliations were less important than the shared moniker of “Americans.”

    After dinner, the guests filed into the East Room, where country singer Brad Paisley performed the song “American Saturday Night” and other tunes.


    _____________________________________SIGNATURE________________________________________________

    Not today Sir, Probably not tomorrow.............................................. bayfront arena st. pete '94
    you're finally here and I'm a mess................................................... nationwide arena columbus '10
    memories like fingerprints are slowly raising.................................... first niagara center buffalo '13
    another man ..... moved by sleight of hand...................................... joe louis arena detroit '14
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    Darth Brandon strikes again! Damn you Brandon, calling out their lies like you do!

    https://www.instagram.com/reel/ComwnyiDXhj/?igshid=NTdlMDg3MTY=
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    mace1229mace1229 Posts: 9,042
    edited February 2023
    brianlux said:
    is the gop angry that we shot it down yet, or nah?

    Won't know until they've decided if it was shot down too soon or too late. 
    Then beer bottles be flyin'!
    I was out of town all weekend so I didn't follow any of the news. 
    It does strike me as odd that we wait a week to shoot down the China balloon that they believed was spying on us. But then shoot down 4 more things at first sight not even knowing what they are? Heard last night they haven't even confirmed if they are civilian, or weather balloons or what they were. The two drastically different approaches do seem odd to me, do they not?
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    mrussel1mrussel1 Posts: 28,801
    mace1229 said:
    brianlux said:
    is the gop angry that we shot it down yet, or nah?

    Won't know until they've decided if it was shot down too soon or too late. 
    Then beer bottles be flyin'!
    I was out of town all weekend so I didn't follow any of the news. 
    It does strike me as odd that we wait a week to shoot down the China balloon that they believed was spying on us. But then shoot down 4 more things at first sight not even knowing what they are? Heard last night they haven't even confirmed if they are civilian, or weather balloons or what they were. The two drastically different approaches do seem odd to me, do they not?
    Well now you see how politics influences military decisions... 
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    The JugglerThe Juggler Behind that bush over there. Posts: 47,455
    Doesn't the much larger size of the first one play into the decision as well? 
    chinese-happy.jpg
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    Go BeaversGo Beavers Posts: 8,729
    The others were at lower altitude so there was potential to cause problems with aircraft. 
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    mace1229mace1229 Posts: 9,042
    Yes, there could be some valid reasons for the decisions. But the China balloon obviously posed a possible risk to air space too, as they closed it as it traveled across the country. Size was probably a factor. But I'm just saying it seems odd that we know a balloon is spying on us and we wait a week to shoot it down, then we see others and shoot down without even knowing what they were. Some were in very remote areas that probably posed little risk as well.
    What it sounds like happened was they decided to monitor the airspace more carefully and found that theres things out there all the time and just decided to shoot them all down without knowing what they were first.
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    The JugglerThe Juggler Behind that bush over there. Posts: 47,455
    edited February 2023
    mace1229 said:
    Yes, there could be some valid reasons for the decisions. But the China balloon obviously posed a possible risk to air space too, as they closed it as it traveled across the country. Size was probably a factor. But I'm just saying it seems odd that we know a balloon is spying on us and we wait a week to shoot it down, then we see others and shoot down without even knowing what they were. Some were in very remote areas that probably posed little risk as well.
    What it sounds like happened was they decided to monitor the airspace more carefully and found that theres things out there all the time and just decided to shoot them all down without knowing what they were first.
    Didn't they say they were able to neutralize it's ability to spy and that we were able to gain intel from it? They also just recovered a good portion of it from shooting it down over the ocean as opposed to over land and risking damage to property and stuff...

    Agree on your second paragraph though. 
    Post edited by The Juggler on
    chinese-happy.jpg
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    static111static111 Posts: 4,889
    Today the local right wing radio in Austin was complaining that we have shot down the three more recent smaller "balloons" without knowing enough about them. And perhaps are purposefully destroying the evidence to protect China.  And that every American should be very outraged about several small balloons floating around...And Karl Rove said that it is the duty of the president to speak to the American people to ease their fears about china and or Russia and these balloons.  Speaking of loons
    Scio me nihil scire

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    static111 said:
    Today the local right wing radio in Austin was complaining that we have shot down the three more recent smaller "balloons" without knowing enough about them. And perhaps are purposefully destroying the evidence to protect China.  And that every American should be very outraged about several small balloons floating around...And Karl Rove said that it is the duty of the president to speak to the American people to ease their fears about china and or Russia and these balloons.  Speaking of loons
    Can't spell "balloons" without "loons."
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    cincybearcatcincybearcat Posts: 16,153
    static111 said:
    Today the local right wing radio in Austin was complaining that we have shot down the three more recent smaller "balloons" without knowing enough about them. And perhaps are purposefully destroying the evidence to protect China.  And that every American should be very outraged about several small balloons floating around...And Karl Rove said that it is the duty of the president to speak to the American people to ease their fears about china and or Russia and these balloons.  Speaking of loons
    Do you not think Biden should be talking about this though? Seems strange to me. 
    hippiemom = goodness
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    mickeyratmickeyrat up my ass, like Chadwick was up his Posts: 36,333

     
    Latest downed objects could well be 'benign,' US says
    By TARA COPP, ERIC TUCKER, COLLEEN LONG and NOMAAN MERCHANT
    Yesterday

    WASHINGTON (AP) — The three still-unidentified aerial objects shot down by the U.S. in the past week likely had merely a "benign purpose,” the White House acknowledged Tuesday, drawing a distinction between them and the massive Chinese balloon that earlier traversed the U.S. with a suspected goal of surveillance.

    “The intelligence community is considering as a leading explanation that these could just be balloons tied to some commercial or benign purpose,” said White House national security spokesman John Kirby.

    Officials also disclosed that a missile fired at one of the three objects, over Lake Huron on Sunday, missed its intended target and landed in the water before a second one successfully hit.

    The new details came as the Biden’s administration’s actions over the past two weeks faced fresh scrutiny in Congress.

    First, U.S. fighter jets didn't shoot down what officials described as a Chinese spy balloon until after had crossed much of the United States, citing safety concerns. Then the military deployed F-22 fighters with heat-seeking missiles to quickly shoot down what likely were harmless objects.

    Taken together, the actions raised political as well as security questions, about whether the Biden administration overreacted after facing Republican criticism for reacting too slowly to the big balloon.

    Even as more information about the three objects emerges, questions remain about what they were, who sent them and how the U.S. might respond to unidentified airborne objects in the future.

    Still unaddressed are questions about the original balloon, including what spying capabilities it had and whether it was transmitting signals as it flew over sensitive military sites in the United States. It was believed by American intelligence to have initially been on a track toward the U.S. territory of Guam, according to a U.S. official.

    The U.S. tracked it for several days after it left China, said the official, who spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity to discuss sensitive intelligence. It appears to have been blown off its initial trajectory and ultimately flew over the continental U.S., the official said.

    Balloons and other unidentified objects have been previously spotted over Guam, a strategic hub for the U.S. Navy and Air Force in the western Pacific.

    It’s unclear how much control China retained over the balloon once it veered from its original trajectory. A second U.S. official said the balloon could have been externally maneuvered or directed to loiter over a specific target, but it’s unclear whether Chinese forces did so.

    Even less is known about the three objects shot down over three successive days, from Friday to Sunday, in part because it's been challenging to recover debris from remote locations in the Canadian Yukon, off northern Alaska and near the Upper Peninsula of Michigan on Lake Huron. So far, officials have no indication they were part of a bigger surveillance operation along with the balloon that that was shot down off the South Carolina coast on Feb. 4.

    “We don’t see anything that points right now to being part of the PRC spy balloon program,” Kirby told reporters, referring to the People's Republic of China. It’s also not likely the objects were “intelligence collection against the United States of any kind — that’s the indication now.”

    No country or private company has come forward to claim any of the objects, Kirby said. They do not appear to have been operated by the U.S. government.

    Kirby had hinted Monday that the three objects were different in substantive ways from the balloon, including in their size. And his comments Tuesday marked a clear effort by the White House to draw a line between the balloon, which officials believe was part of a Chinese military program that has operated over five continents, and objects that the administration thinks could simply be part of some research or commercial effort.

    In Washington, Pentagon officials met with senators for a classified briefing on the shootdowns. Lawmakers conveyed concerns from their constituents about a need to keep them informed and came away assured the objects were not extraterrestrial in nature but wanting many more details.

    Still, Sen. Thom Tillis, R-N.C., said the successful recent interceptions were likely to have a “calming influence” and make future shootdowns less likely.

    Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., told reporters after the briefing that he didn’t think the objects posed a threat.

    “They’re trying to figure out — you know there’s a bunch of junk up there. So you got to figure out what’s the threat, what’s not. You see something, you shouldn’t always have to shoot it down," Graham said.

    Biden has ordered National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan to form an interagency team to study the detection, analysis and “disposition of unidentified aerial objects” that could pose either safety or security risks.

    The recent objects have also drawn the attention of world leaders including in Canada, where one was shot down on Saturday, and in the United Kingdom, where the prime minister has ordered a security review.

    Japan’s Defense Ministry said Tuesday that at least three flying objects spotted in Japanese airspace since 2019 are strongly believed to have been Chinese spy balloons.

    Meanwhile, U.S. officials confirmed that a first missile aimed at the object over Lake Huron landed instead in the water, but that a second one hit the target.

    Gen. Mark Milley, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said the military went to “great lengths” to make sure none of the strikes put civilians at risk, including identifying what the debris field size was likely to be and the maximum effective range of the missiles used.

    “We’re very, very careful to make sure that those shots are in fact safe,” Milley said. “And that’s the guidance from the president. Shoot it down, but make sure we minimize collateral damage and we preserve the safety of the American people."

    The object taken down Sunday was the third in as many days to be shot from the skies. The White House has said the objects differed in size and maneuverability from the Chinese surveillance balloon that U.S. fighter jets shot down earlier this month, but that their altitude was low enough to pose a risk to civilian air traffic.

    Weather challenges and the remote locations of where the three objects were shot down over Alaska, Canada and Lake Huron have impeded recovery efforts so far.

    Milley was in Brussels with Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin to meet with members of the Ukraine Defense Contact Group on additional weapons and defense needs for Kyiv in advance of Russia's anticipated spring offensive.

    ___

    Copp reported from Brussels. AP writers Lisa Mascaro and Stephen Groves contributed from Washington.


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    Not today Sir, Probably not tomorrow.............................................. bayfront arena st. pete '94
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    mrussel1mrussel1 Posts: 28,801
    static111 said:
    Today the local right wing radio in Austin was complaining that we have shot down the three more recent smaller "balloons" without knowing enough about them. And perhaps are purposefully destroying the evidence to protect China.  And that every American should be very outraged about several small balloons floating around...And Karl Rove said that it is the duty of the president to speak to the American people to ease their fears about china and or Russia and these balloons.  Speaking of loons
    Do you not think Biden should be talking about this though? Seems strange to me. 
    I don't believe the president should be riffing on anything. That's one thing I really despised about Trump.  If the president has something presidential to say,  then he should.  But until then, speculation or spontaneous comments are not helpful.  Let his spokesperson or Pentagon officials make statements. 
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    Gern BlanstenGern Blansten Your Mom's Posts: 18,130
    static111 said:
    Today the local right wing radio in Austin was complaining that we have shot down the three more recent smaller "balloons" without knowing enough about them. And perhaps are purposefully destroying the evidence to protect China.  And that every American should be very outraged about several small balloons floating around...And Karl Rove said that it is the duty of the president to speak to the American people to ease their fears about china and or Russia and these balloons.  Speaking of loons
    As if they haven't considered that...my guess is they know everything about them
    Remember the Thomas Nine !! (10/02/2018)

    1998: Noblesville; 2003: Noblesville; 2009: EV Nashville, Chicago, Chicago
    2010: St Louis, Columbus, Noblesville; 2011: EV Chicago, East Troy, East Troy
    2013: London ON, Chicago; 2014: Cincy, St Louis, Moline (NO CODE)
    2016: Lexington, Wrigley #1; 2018: Wrigley, Wrigley, Boston, Boston
    2020: Oakland, Oakland:  2021: EV Ohana, Ohana, Ohana, Ohana
    2022: Oakland, Oakland, Nashville, Louisville; 2023: Chicago, Chicago, Noblesville
    2024: Noblesville, Wrigley, Wrigley, Ohana, Ohana
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    mickeyratmickeyrat up my ass, like Chadwick was up his Posts: 36,333

     
    White House: Tesla to make some EV chargers available to all
    By MATTHEW DALY
    Today

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Electric car giant Tesla will, for the first time, make some of its charging stations available to all U.S. electric vehicles by the end of next year, under a new plan announced Wednesday by the White House.

    The plan will make at least 7,500 chargers from Tesla's Supercharger and Destination Charger network available to non-Tesla EVs by the end of 2024, the White House said.

    The plan to open the nation's largest and most reliable charging network to all drivers is a potential game-changer in promoting EV use, a key component of President Joe Biden's goal to fight climate change.

    "As President Biden said, the great American road trip will be electrified,' ' said Mitch Landrieu, a White House aide who oversees implementation of the 2021 infrastructure law signed by Biden.

    Soon, charging an EV "will be as easy as filling up at a gas station,'' Landrieu said.

    The plan to open up Tesla's charging network was among a series of developments announced Wednesday by the White House, such as new standards to make EV charging networks convenient and reliable for all Americans, including those driving long distances. The new standards will ensure that everyone can use a charging network, no matter what car they drive or what state they charge in, Landrieu and other officials said.

    Tesla, General Motors, EVgo, Pilot, Hertz and other companies also have agreed to expand their networks by thousands of public charging ports in the next two years, using private funds and federal spending from the infrastructure law, "putting the nation’s EV charging goals even closer within reach,'' the White House said.

    "It's clear this administration is making incredible progress in ensuring EVs' future,'' Landrieu told reporters Tuesday.

    Under the administration's plan, Tesla will set up charging sites at hotels, restaurants and other public spaces in urban and rural locations, the White House said. All EV drivers will be able to access these stations using the Tesla app or website, officials said. Tesla plans to triple its nationwide network of Superchargers over the next few years, the White House said.

    The developments come after Landrieu and another top White House aide, John Podesta, met with Tesla CEO Elon Musk in Washington last month. Biden did not attend the meeting, which centered on the EV industry and the broader goal of electrification of the U.S. economy, the White House said.

    A week later, the Treasury Department said it is making more electric vehicles — including SUVs made by Tesla, Ford and General Motors — eligible for tax credits of up to $7,500 under new vehicle classification definitions. The revised standards follow lobbying by Tesla and other automakers to change vehicle definitions to allow higher-priced EVs to qualify for a maximum tax credit.

    Tesla raised prices on its Model Y SUV within hours of the Treasury announcement.

    Sam Abuelsamid, principal analyst for Guidehouse Insight, said the agreement to open up Tesla chargers to non-Tesla EVs "is potentially a very big deal.''

    The plan "should be a big help to non-Tesla EV drivers if they can use the Tesla network and if the network remains as reliable as it is today,'' he said.

    While the White House said the Tesla network should be available through use of a company app or website, an adaptor — or even a new charger design — will likely be required for non-Tesla EVs, Abuelsamid said.

    Even so, a question remains, he added: "Once they open it up, will (the Tesla network) still be reliable?''


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    Not today Sir, Probably not tomorrow.............................................. bayfront arena st. pete '94
    you're finally here and I'm a mess................................................... nationwide arena columbus '10
    memories like fingerprints are slowly raising.................................... first niagara center buffalo '13
    another man ..... moved by sleight of hand...................................... joe louis arena detroit '14
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    mickeyratmickeyrat up my ass, like Chadwick was up his Posts: 36,333


     
    White House: GOP plans would drive deficits up $3 trillion
    By JOSH BOAK
    7 mins ago

    WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden plans to go on the offensive against Republicans, saying in effect that their policies would add $3 trillion to the national debt.

    “If you add up all the proposals that my Republican friends in Congress have offered so far, they would add another $3 trillion to the debt over 10 years,” Biden plans to say, according to excerpts of the speech. “You’ll see that my budget will invest in America, lower costs and protect and strengthen Social Security and Medicare, while cutting the deficit by $2 trillion over 10 years.”

    Ahead of Biden's remarks to union workers Wednesday in Lanham, Maryland, the White House also issued a fact sheet that questions the GOP's sincerity on deficit reduction.

    The White House is charging the GOP with hypocrisy for favoring tax policies that could push the accumulated $31.4 trillion national debt higher. Yet Biden, too, wants to preserve some of the same tax cuts as Republicans so long as the approach is “fiscally responsible.”

    The speech is the latest evolution in a political and economic debate that will play out over several months. Biden and House Speaker Kevin McCarthy need to reach a deal mid-summer on raising the government's legal borrowing authority or else the government could lack the funds to pay its bills and default.

    McCarthy, R-Calif., says they should agree on a path toward balancing the budget, posting on Twitter last Friday: “No more blank checks for runaway government spending.”

    The president detailed a recent exchange with the GOP speaker in a speech Tuesday in Washington to county government officials. He told them that McCarthy “made it real clear to me what he wants to do. He says he’s not going to raise any taxes at all on anybody. He just wants to cut programs."

    The president said that Republican lawmakers should present their budget plan to the public, just as the White House intends to do on March 9.

    “I believe we could be fiscally responsible without risking — threatening to send our country into chaos,” Biden said Tuesday of debt limit talks.

    But the actual path of the national debt could hinge on the upcoming expiration of individual tax cuts that President Donald Trump signed into law in 2017. Extending those tax cuts would in theory raise the national debt, as the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office based its projections on them lapsing after 2025. The CBO will release an updated budget outlook on Wednesday.

    The White House fact sheet said Republicans would increase the debt by $2.7 trillion by prolonging those tax cuts, in addition to cutting a corporate minimum tax established by Biden and other policies that would add to the debt.

    The White House noted that the extension of the Trump-era tax overhaul would give a $175,000 tax cut to families with incomes over $4 million. The size of that tax cut is roughly double the median U.S. household income.

    But the same White House fact sheet adds that Biden would like to preserve some of the same tax cuts as Republicans, just not those that benefit the wealthy. Biden pledged during the 2020 campaign to not raise taxes on anyone making under $400,000, so letting the tax cuts expire could be viewed as a tax hike on the middle class.

    The Tax Policy Center, a think tank, estimated when the law was passed that 53% of taxpayers would see their IRS bills increase in 2027 after the cuts expire. About 70% of those solidly in the middle class — the middle 40% to 60% of all taxpayers — would owe more.

    The fact sheet previewing the speech said the president is committed to a “fiscally responsible approach to continuing current tax policies" for people earning less than $400,000. It's not entirely clear what that could mean for the national debt, despite Biden's plans on Wednesday to repeat his promise in last week's State of the Union address to cut deficits by $2 trillion.

    That leaves Republicans and Democrats theoretically in agreement on keeping taxes low for most people, while leaders in both parties have pledged no cuts to Social Security or Medicare.

    Maya MacGuineas, president of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget, said that lawmakers should consider everything if the goal is deficit reduction.

    “If we truly want to address our fiscal situation — as we should — policymakers should put all their cards on the table, abandon their demagoguing, and come together for the good of the American people,” she said in a statement.


    _____________________________________SIGNATURE________________________________________________

    Not today Sir, Probably not tomorrow.............................................. bayfront arena st. pete '94
    you're finally here and I'm a mess................................................... nationwide arena columbus '10
    memories like fingerprints are slowly raising.................................... first niagara center buffalo '13
    another man ..... moved by sleight of hand...................................... joe louis arena detroit '14
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    gimmesometruth27gimmesometruth27 St. Fuckin Louis Posts: 22,271
    static111 said:
    Today the local right wing radio in Austin was complaining that we have shot down the three more recent smaller "balloons" without knowing enough about them. And perhaps are purposefully destroying the evidence to protect China.  And that every American should be very outraged about several small balloons floating around...And Karl Rove said that it is the duty of the president to speak to the American people to ease their fears about china and or Russia and these balloons.  Speaking of loons
    what about when trump gave his very first campaign speech? the doom and gloom one about how mexico is sending drugs and rapists etc. rove can pipe down with that "easing fears" bullshit when their entire party is about governing using fear as a tactic.
    There is nothing noble in being superior to your fellow man; true nobility is being superior to your former self.- Hemingway

    "Well, you tell him that I don't talk to suckas."
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    static111static111 Posts: 4,889
    edited February 2023
    static111 said:
    Today the local right wing radio in Austin was complaining that we have shot down the three more recent smaller "balloons" without knowing enough about them. And perhaps are purposefully destroying the evidence to protect China.  And that every American should be very outraged about several small balloons floating around...And Karl Rove said that it is the duty of the president to speak to the American people to ease their fears about china and or Russia and these balloons.  Speaking of loons
    Do you not think Biden should be talking about this though? Seems strange to me. 
    I couldn't care less about these balloons and think it is the biggest non story of my lifetime
    Scio me nihil scire

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    mace1229mace1229 Posts: 9,042
    static111 said:
    static111 said:
    Today the local right wing radio in Austin was complaining that we have shot down the three more recent smaller "balloons" without knowing enough about them. And perhaps are purposefully destroying the evidence to protect China.  And that every American should be very outraged about several small balloons floating around...And Karl Rove said that it is the duty of the president to speak to the American people to ease their fears about china and or Russia and these balloons.  Speaking of loons
    Do you not think Biden should be talking about this though? Seems strange to me. 
    I couldn't care less about these balloons and think it is the biggest non story of my lifetime
    I appreciate your correct use of “couldn’t care less.” I hate when people say “I could care less.”
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    Gern BlanstenGern Blansten Your Mom's Posts: 18,130
    mace1229 said:
    static111 said:
    static111 said:
    Today the local right wing radio in Austin was complaining that we have shot down the three more recent smaller "balloons" without knowing enough about them. And perhaps are purposefully destroying the evidence to protect China.  And that every American should be very outraged about several small balloons floating around...And Karl Rove said that it is the duty of the president to speak to the American people to ease their fears about china and or Russia and these balloons.  Speaking of loons
    Do you not think Biden should be talking about this though? Seems strange to me. 
    I couldn't care less about these balloons and think it is the biggest non story of my lifetime
    I appreciate your correct use of “couldn’t care less.” I hate when people say “I could care less.”
    Irregardless of that the balloon story is overhyped
    Remember the Thomas Nine !! (10/02/2018)

    1998: Noblesville; 2003: Noblesville; 2009: EV Nashville, Chicago, Chicago
    2010: St Louis, Columbus, Noblesville; 2011: EV Chicago, East Troy, East Troy
    2013: London ON, Chicago; 2014: Cincy, St Louis, Moline (NO CODE)
    2016: Lexington, Wrigley #1; 2018: Wrigley, Wrigley, Boston, Boston
    2020: Oakland, Oakland:  2021: EV Ohana, Ohana, Ohana, Ohana
    2022: Oakland, Oakland, Nashville, Louisville; 2023: Chicago, Chicago, Noblesville
    2024: Noblesville, Wrigley, Wrigley, Ohana, Ohana
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