Group 2 recover a high-altitude surveillance balloon off the coast of Myrtle Beach, S.C., Feb. 5, 2023. U.S. fighter aircraft under U.S. Northern Command authority engaged and brought down the balloon within sovereign U.S. airspace and over U.S. territorial waters on Feb. 4. Active-duty, Reserve, National Guard and civilian personnel planned and executed the operation, and partners from the Coast Guard, Federal Aviation Administration and FBI ensured public safety throughout the operation and recovery efforts. Navy Petty Officer 1st Class Tyler Thompson  

The Intercept: U.S. Sent “Weather” Balloons to Spy on China and the Soviet Union in the 1950s  

When caught, the Eisenhower administration lied through its teeth about it. 

For the past week, the large Chinese balloon floating over the United States has consumed the attention of the American media. 

Before the balloon was shot down by the U.S. on Saturday, China’s government stated it was a “civilian airship used for research, mainly meteorological.” For its part, the Pentagon says it has “very high confidence” that the balloon was conducting surveillance.

It’s understandable that the U.S. government would be suspicious, given that America sent spy balloons exactly the same size over both the Soviet Union and China in 1956 — and made exactly the same claims as China is making today about what we were up to. 

The balloons the U.S. used were, oddly enough, manufactured by General Mills. The General Mills website describes its mission as “making food the world loves,” and it’s certainly best known today for its products like Cheerios, Chex, and Lucky Charms. But the company bragged in a 2011 blog post that it hired “the ‘daddy’ of the balloon industry,” thanks to the Aeronautical Research Division it established in 1946. (Another division of General Mills made the Alvin submarine that explored the Titanic.)  

Read more ….  

WNU Editor: The U.S. has been using “spy balloons” as recent as the Afghan war …. US spy balloons hover over Afghans, causing unease (NBC).