2022 saw a mysterious high-altitude balloon alert over Kauai.
Flashback Kauai: F-22 Scramble to Intercept China Spy Balloon
by John Bond
Both US DoD and China have entered a period of "balloon renaissance" using them to collect intelligence, especially on radar and communications systems. China would certainly have a big interest in the Kauai Pacific Missile Range, Pearl Harbor, and Kaneohe.
Fox News reports at least one Chinese spy balloon flew over portions of Texas and Florida during the Trump administration, despite the former president's insistence it never happened.
The information on Chinese spy balloons under the Trump administration was “discovered after” he left office and “they went undetected,” the official told Fox News Digital.
The official said this is “part of a larger pattern.”
“These balloons are all part of a PRC fleet of balloons developed to conduct surveillance operations, which have also violated the sovereignty of other countries,” the official explained, adding that these activities are “often undertaken at the direction of the People’s Liberation Army.”
The official said that over the past several years, Chinese balloons have been spotted over countries across five continents, including in East Asia, South Asia and Europe.
U.S. officials told Fox News on Sunday that a Chinese spy balloon crashed into the Pacific off the coast of Hawaii four months ago. Those officials said that at least one Chinese spy balloon flew over portions of Texas and Florida during the Trump administration.
The Drive: F-22s Scrambled To Investigate A Mysterious High-Altitude Balloon Off The Coast Of Hawaii
The Adjutant General of Hawaii, the state’s top-ranking military officer, posted a statement to Twitter saying that “Indo-Pacific Command detected a high-altitude object floating in air in the vicinity of the Hawaiian Islands. In accordance with homeland defense procedures, Pacific Air Forces launched tactical aircraft to intercept and identify the object, visually confirming an unmanned balloon without observable identification markings.”
(Putin dupe) Kauai County Councilwoman Felicia Cowen (claimed) to the Honolulu Star-Advertiser that she heard two booms, both loud enough to shake her house. “I would like to understand what were the powerful explosion sounds that were strong enough to shake my house in Kilauea, Kauai, and what looked like smoke in the sky. Was any object hit and did it explode? If so, what was it, and why?” However, an Air Force spokesperson told the paper on Thursday, February 17, that the “responding aircraft did not destroy the balloon.” The spokesperson continued that the service is “actively monitoring it via joint capabilities and it is under evaluation,” adding that “we don’t have anything else to provide at this time."
Videos posted to the public Facebook group “Kauai Community” show what appears to be a stationary white oblong object in the sky with at least two contrails surrounding it. The accompanying caption states it was filmed from “Princeville Park.” That would seem to refer to a Prince Albert Park in Princeville, found along the northern coast of the island.
Regardless, it points to a much larger issue concerning the use of balloons to collect critical intelligence. There is a deep history of balloons being used to collect intelligence, especially on radar and communications systems. We believe this is going on today in America's critical training areas offshore of the U.S. mainland. This coincides with what is emerging to be a renaissance of sorts when it comes to militaries using balloons as platforms for sensors, communications relays, electronic warfare systems, and even to launch other craft or payloads.
KHON Feb 18 2022: Mysterious flying object alerts military aircraft
HNN Feb 18 2022: Residents spotted a strange orb above Kauai. The military responded with jets
The Raptors scrambled out of Honolulu as PRIMO1 and PRIMO2 at about 3:45 PM local time and headed off to the northwest. They actually popped up on Flightradar24, which is really rare (see below). As you can see, one of them was at over 41,000 feet and descending after investigating the contact north of Kauai. You can see the alert KC-135 at 25,025 feet nearby.
Feb 10, 2023: NASA: Chinese Satellite Behind Green Lasers over Mauna Kea
HNN: Military officials decline to say whether orb spotted over Kauai was Chinese spy balloon
SA: China spy balloon raises questions about similar Kauai event