We are living in very scary times, the likes of which we have never experienced in our lifetimes. We must understand that at this very moment, the safety, security and future of the USA hangs in the balance. The Biden mishandling of the Chinese balloon of mystery was the final straw. Here, our multi trillion dollar funded military, from the garbled notice issue by the Defense Department, had to be alerted by a civilian in Montana who contacted a local newspaper to report "an unidentified flying object." Either US leaders knew about the strange object flying over our country and withheld the information from the public, or they were unaware of the balloon.
Neither explanation is acceptable in a supposed free society.
Once on the spot, our whole bunch of incompetent leaders, uniformed and civilian, didn't know what to do. President Biden claimed he wanted it shot down but claimed he was overruled by the military. Strange, we thought he was the Commander in Chief, as when he brushed aside the advice of generals who thought the plans for the retreat in Afghanistan would be a disaster. Although they proved to be right, he had the final say. In the balloon's case, he took a back seat. What gives? Who was elected to lead us?
Nobody knew what this huge, 200 foot high balloon carried on board. Might it have carried an electromagnetic pulse weapon (EMT) that could have knocked out every electronic chip based form of communication and rendered us powerless? What about a cargo of Covid-like material? Why did we not spot this vehicle over the broad Pacific and get rid of it then? Why must we assume it was a "harmless" spy balloon, as we were told?
Shooting it down over mostly unpopulated Alaska or Montana would have been a piece of cake rather than let it soar over populated cities until finally destroying it over the ocean. A mealy-mouthed senior U.S. official warned lamely that the balloon "was carrying heavy equipment and is the size of at least two school buses and would hit the ground at significant speed if shot own, raising the possibility of casualties." Sure, it might hit an elk or two.
When notified of the situation, former President Trump thundered, "Shoot it down!" Former U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley tweeted: "Shoot own the balloon. Cancel Blinken's trip. Hold China accountable. Biden is letting China walk all over us. It's time to make America strong again."
These two individuals who might square off in a Republican Presidential primary have the courage to lead. Not like Biden who might very well be compromised by China through the mysterious business deals he and his family have had with that dictator led nation. According to insiders, Biden was fearful of a military response from China that led to the initial plan of total secrecy, withholding this info from the public, perhaps for years.
We recall the prompt actions of Soviet Russia in 1960 when they shot down our U-2 reconnaissance spy plane piloted by Francis Gary Powers. No problem. No war resulted and we finally admitted guilt as should China in this case. But China, knowing it holds the upper hand over Biden, continued its arrogant ways by having its Minister of Foreign Affairs, calling the decision to down the balloon an "obvious overreaction and a serious violation of international practice," adding that it was "reserving the right to take further actions in response." This sounds to us like they feel they hold all the cards with this administration.
And they seem to. They supply the USA with 90% of its pharmaceuticals, Biden looks the other way when they buy up thousands of acres of property right near military bases and he has sold them over a million barrels of oil from the US Strategic Petroleum Supply that could have been utilized by US citizens. Sounds like he leans their way.
It's overtly obvious to all that The US President is neither capable of the leadership required to stand up to the likes of the China's of the world, militarily, economically and diplomatically. The US is now behind the eight ball and has a scary time ahead until Biden is replaced with hopefully, someone with the chutzpah, personality and love of country, like, for instance, Donald Trump.Or Haley. Or De Santis. Or someone else. Let's wait, hope and pray that the West survives.
Alan Bergstein, lecturer and columnist, is an editorial writer for The NY Jewish Voice and a retired NYC school principal A father of four, he is a Korean War veteran and Jewish activist who is President of the Judeo/Christian Republican Club of Palm Beach County, Florida.