On February 10, Foreign Policy published its biweekly “It’s Debatable” column featuring Scowcroft Center director Matthew Kroenig and Emma Ashford examining the latest news in international affairs.
In their latest column, they debate whether the US is overreacting to the Chinese spy balloon that violated American airspace and was shot down on February 4.
I think there was good reason for the concern. China violated U.S. airspace and sovereignty to spy on some of the most sensitive military bases in the United States. The Chinese cover story that this was a weather balloon gone astray does not stand up to scrutiny.
I really do think this whole incident was blown out of proportion. The media, and much of Washington, spent several days fretting about the balloon and what it meant about the rise of Chinese power… Look, it was a balloon. It was collecting intelligence. Satellites overfly the United States every day taking similar pictures.