balloon shot down video
Saturday, Americans reported seeing a large Chinese surveillance balloon drifting over the southeastern United States. It was shot out of the sky over the Atlantic Ocean hours later.
The moment the balloon appeared to be struck and begin its descent into the water was captured on television.
The balloon was shot down after entering U.S. territorial waters, according to a statement from Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin. According to U.S. officials, it carried a large quantity of spy equipment and had flown over several strategic sites, including nuclear missile silos, as it traversed a vast portion of the country.
Earlier in the day, cell phones and professional cameras were used to document the trajectory of the balloon. This week, the balloon was spotted over Montana.
video of chinese balloon explosion
Television footage and photographs taken by witnesses appear to show aircraft firing upon the spy balloon over the Atlantic Ocean. Debris could be seen floating slowly toward the ocean after a small explosion.
For the recovery operation, U.S. military jets were spotted flying in the area, and ships were deployed on the water.
Senior Pentagon officials briefing reporters on the condition of anonymity stated that F-22 and F-15 warplanes from Virginia and Massachusetts were dispatched to bring down the balloon after it passed the South Carolina coastline. At 2:39 p.m. EDT, a single AIM 9X sidewinder air-to-air missile was fired and struck the balloon, according to officials.