Repairing US-China relations has been hampered by the balloon saga.

Repairing US-China relations has been hampered by the balloon saga.

In the same way that the balloon fell into the water, so did efforts to restore China-US relations.

Just as the Pentagon tracked the path of a high-altitude piece of equipment set to be blasted out of the sky, you can follow the route of China’s retaliation to its balloon.

We are looking into it; we regret that it was our weather balloon that was blown off course; we believe that US politicians and the media are making a big deal out of this; everyone keep calm; the US attack on this airship is a severe breach of international protocol.

The US’s senior diplomat, Anthony Blinken, is due to visit China this week, so Beijing originally tried to reassure Washington that everything had been an accident.

The gloves were taken off nevertheless as it became evident that neither the secretary of state nor the balloon would be returning.

It is far from the current state that the Chinese government desired.

The US Secretary of State was supposed to be here erecting bridges or at the very least working to prevent the destruction of those that already exist.

Chinese “spy” balloon is shot down by the US over the Atlantic
Why not utilize satellites instead of a spy balloon?
Was the China balloon deviated off its course?
Don’t be misled. With high expectations for this trip, Chinese President Xi Jinping allegedly even planned a meeting with Mr. Blinken.

What kind of intelligence gathered by a balloon could possibly be so valuable that it was worth ruining this procedure?

The quick response is “none” Deploying this balloon in this manner and at this time must have been a mistake on the part of China, many analysts believe, even if it was partially spying.

If so, someone is being made to pay for it, especially since there are now two of these high-altitude balloons involved, with one circling over Latin America. Given its “poor self-steering capability,” there has been no news on whether it too is supposed to have been blown wildly off course.

Many people outside of China appear to believe that the Chinese Communist Party is an all-knowing, tightly controlled organ of power, similar to a massive, effective supercomputer that is controlled by Xi Jinping.

There is no doubt that it is a huge, expansive organization. However, it also consists of divisions and power blocs that are vying for influence, sometimes concealing information and even purposefully not announcing their plans in case a rival gains an unfavorable advantage.

Some people assumed not only that a balloon carrying equipment was eavesdropping but also that it was being sent as a message to the Biden administration as it began to drift close to US nuclear missile silos.

Theodore Blinken
Anthony Blinken was anticipated to arrive in China on February 5 and 6.
But it is difficult to see how this interpretation holds up when you take into account the harm it has caused in terms of thwarting a visit that the Chinese government, all the way up to the top, intended to happen.

Because of how Beijing attempted to preserve the Blinken trip by employing remarkably amenable language, we are aware of its significance in this situation.

According to a representative for the foreign ministry, “The Chinese side regrets the inadvertent entry of the airship into US airspace owing to force majeure.”

It is not important how extensively it was used to spy or research the weather in order to comprehend how devastating this episode has been for individuals on both sides who have been trying to defuse tensions between the US and China.

It was not anticipated that Mr. Blinken’s conversations in Beijing would result in a huge breakthrough. The breakthrough was to come from the sessions themselves.

To avoid a slide into armed confrontation, they would have discussed steps toward a network of “guard rails,” channels of communication, and lines not to cross.

Additionally, President Xi wanted it because he wants to send a strong message home that his government is capable of guiding China into the future.

Graph of helium-filled high-altitude balloon with solar panels, instruments compartment, and possible cameras, radar, and communications gear. They can fly higher than fighter planes and commercial aircraft, at altitudes of 80,000 to 120,000 feet.
Only a few months after China’s leader said there would be no deviating from the zero-Covid strategy at the Party Congress, there was an abrupt and embarrassing retreat from it.

The quick turnabout caused overcrowding in hospital emergency rooms, a shortage of medications, and an undetermined number of Covid deaths.

All of this must now be put behind the government in order to promote the idea of a China that is recovering economically and opening up once again.

In this context, a high-level US visit would have been quite beneficial.

Take a look at this week’s objections from the main superpowers.

Washington claimed that this was a “obvious infringement of US sovereignty,” yet we all know that it has a variety of very sophisticated tools at its disposal for eavesdropping on China.

Beijing has denounced this US “attack on a civilian unmanned airship,” but we all know the People’s Liberation Army would shoot down any US surveillance balloon that entered Chinese airspace in a flash.

This implies that there is some theater in some of the fury coming from both sides.

The good news is that since the balloon is no longer there, they can put it behind them and reschedule Mr. Blinken’s trip to Beijing when everyone is asking one another, “hey do you remember that whole balloon thing?”

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