Pentagon Shoots Down Mysterious Object Over Alaska

On Saturday, the Pentagon confirmed that it had shot down a mysterious object over Alaska airspace.[0] The object, which was detected by the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) using ground-based radar on Feb. 9, was identified as an unmanned craft, and was shot down by F-22 fighters with an AIM-9 Sidewinder missile.[1] This incident comes only one day after a “high altitude object” was taken down near the northern coast of Alaska, and a week after a Chinese spy balloon was shot down off the coast of South Carolina.[2]

The object shot down over Alaska was much smaller than the Chinese surveillance balloon, being only the size of a small car and having no maneuverability.[3] According to National Security Council Coordinator for Strategic Communications at the White House, John Kirby, the President was mainly concerned about the potential threat the object posed to civilian flight and thus ordered the military to shoot it down.[4]

The object was shot down approximately 100 miles from the Canada-U.S. border in central Yukon, Canadian Defense Minister Anita Anand said in a press briefing.[5] She stated that it was a “small, cylindrical object” flying at about 40,000 feet.[4]

In response to the incident, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) temporarily closed some airspace in Montana for “Department of Defense activities” and scrambled fighter jets after radar detected an unidentified object.[6] Approximately one hour was needed for the airspace to be reopened.[7]

NORAD released a statement saying that they “detected a radar anomaly and sent fighter aircraft to investigate,” but the aircraft “did not identify any object to correlate to the radar hits.”[6]

The origin and purpose of the object is unclear, but it appears to have no connection to the Chinese spy balloon.[8] Currently, the FBI is working closely with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police to learn more about the object as Canadian authorities conduct recovery operations.[6] NORAD said it will continue to monitor the situation.[1]

0. “Fighter aircraft shoot down car-sized ‘object' flying near Alaska” Military Times, 10 Feb. 2023,

1. “Unmanned aircraft shot down over Canada by US jets, official says” USA TODAY, 11 Feb. 2023,

2. “After China balloon scare, Air Force shoots down object flying above Alaska's North Slope” Alaska Public Media News, 10 Feb. 2023,

3. “Air Force Shoots Down ‘High-Altitude Object' off Alaskan Coast” Department of Defense, 10 Feb. 2023,

4. “U.S. shoots down ‘high-altitude object' over Alaskan airspace, White House says” NBC News, 10 Feb. 2023,

5. “High-altitude object shot down over northern Canada, Montana airspace temporarily closed” ABC News, 12 Feb. 2023,

6. “U.S. jet downs unidentified object over Canada” POLITICO, 12 Feb. 2023,

7. “”Unidentified object” shot down over Canada, Trudeau says” CBS News, 12 Feb. 2023,

8. “Everything We Know About The ‘High-Altitude Object’ Shot Down Over Alaska” Forbes, 11 Feb. 2023,