US, Canadian Military Shoot Down Unidentified Object Over Canadian Airspace
On Saturday, the U.S. and Canadian military shot down an unidentified object over Canadian airspace on orders from Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. The object had been detected by the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) over Alaska the night before, and two F-22 fighters were quickly dispatched to track and monitor it as it crossed the border.
The object was a “small, cylindrical object” flying at approximately 40,000 feet and posed a threat to civilian air traffic. Canadian Defense Minister Anita Anand said it was shot down approximately 100 miles from the Canada-U.S. border in central Yukon.
The shoot-down marks the third day in a row that an unidentified object has been shot down over North American airspace: On Friday, an unidentified object was shot down in Alaska airspace by a US F-22, and last weekend, a suspected Chinese surveillance balloon was taken down by F-22s off the coast of South Carolina.
The Federal Aviation Administration and NORAD restricted airspace in central Montana Saturday and scrambled fighter jets after radar detected an unidentified object. No object was identified by the pilots that matched the radar signals, so the airspace was reopened.
The object shot down Saturday appears to have been unrelated to the Chinese surveillance balloon downed last weekend. The Pentagon said the object was being used to gather intelligence on U.S. military installations, but officials have not provided any details that indicate whether the object is related to the Chinese balloon.
The Federal Bureau of Investigation is now working with the Royal Canadian Mounted Police to identify the object. NORAD said in a statement that the closure was due to the detection of a “radar anomaly,” and that NORAD “sent fighter aircraft to investigate,” but the aircraft “did not identify any object to correlate to the radar hits.”
The object appears to be a “cylindrical object” smaller than the Chinese surveillance balloon, Canadian Defense Minister Anita Anand said at a news conference on Saturday. The US intelligence community identified the object as a Chinese spy balloon and linked it to a surveillance program run by China’s People’s Liberation Army.
Chairman of the House Intelligence Committee Mike Turner informed CNN that the Biden administration does seem “somewhat trigger-happy, although this is certainly preferable to the permissive environment that they showed when the Chinese spy balloon was coming over some of our most sensitive sites.“, which is preferable to the lax atmosphere they had when the Chinese espionage balloon was flying near some of our most confidential locations.
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