Maybe China thought their balloon was a gesture toward bringing normality. Really, they have so many other ways to spy. Balloons usually signify something playful, positive or benign. What’s wrong with collecting weather data?
I know, you don’t buy that. But maybe they didn’t want a Blinken visit at this time either. Who needs more protests and street violence? They also don’t need the American media blathering about incursions into our sacred space. This is more a political than a military issue anyhow.
The Secretary will have a lot to deal with when he does visit.
Xi: Tony, good to see you. Sorry you misinterpreted our goodwill gesture with the balloon. I know you don’t accept our weather data explanation but we did apologize. Damn cold front screwed it up. Maybe we just wanted to see how you idiots would react to our unmanned civilian airship.
Blinken: Let’s talk turkey, man. We two countries both spy on each other a lot. But we gotta keep these efforts hidden from public view. Since we both are trying to control the world, we certainly don’t want the noisy media getting in the way. Can I have some more dim sum, please?
Perhaps real secrecy in this world has become a bad joke, and both sides know it. Why are we hearing so little about the second balloon over Costa Rica and Colombia? Latin America, as always, is off-stage to the U.S. My bet is that there will be no big surprises when the equipment gets fished out and examined. The U.S. again makes national security mountains out of molehills.
Yesterday morning Jake Tapper interviewed Marco Rubio, one of the Senate’s lesser lights. Marco kept hammering on the idea that the balloon should have been taken down sooner. Of course, that would have made the problem worse. Have you noticed that most all proposals made by Republicans would make things worse?
When I lived in Rhode Island a beautiful hot air balloon set down on our front lawn one morning. The folks getting out of the gondola were ecstatic about their ride, and I’ve always wanted to experience that. Balloons are beautiful and fun. The Chinese one was neither, and so it went against our expectations and sensibilities, making it a perfect subject for controversy.