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White House: Three downed UFOs likely commercial, 'benign,' not part of China spy balloon program

"The remnants are in very difficult terrain," Sen. Kennedy said. "They're looking, but they haven't been able to find them." 

Published: February 14, 2023 11:31am

Updated: February 14, 2023 2:49pm

The White House on Tuesday said the three objects downed by the U.S. military in the past five days were likely used for "benign" or commercial purposes and were not part of the Chinese spy program but the remnants have not yet been recovered.

"These could just be balloons tied to some commercial or benign purpose," National Security Council spokesman John Kirby said, according to NPR.

"While we can’t definitively say, again without analyzing the debris, what these objects were, thus far — and I caveat that by saying thus far — we haven’t seen any indication or anything that points specifically to the idea that these three objects were part of the [China’s] spy balloon program, or that they were definitively involved in external intelligence collection efforts," Kirby also said.

Navy divers have recovered the payload of the China surveillance balloon that was shot down Feb. 7 and recovered off the South Carolina coast. But the remnants of the three UFOs shot down Friday, Saturday, then Sunday have yet to be recovered. 

"They are in very difficult terrain," Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman Gen. Mark Milley said during a separate press conference Tuesday "The [first] one, off the coast of Alaska, that's in some really, really difficult terrain in the Arctic Circle, with very, very low temperatures in the minus 40s. The second one is in the Canadian Rockies and the Yukon. Very difficult to get that one, and the third one is in Lake Huron, probably a couple 100 feet [deep], so we'll get them eventually, but it's going to take some time to recover those."

Sen. Kennedy of Louisiana made a similar comment after the Senate received an intelligence briefing on the matter. 

"The remnants are in very difficult terrain," he said. "They're looking, but they haven't been able to find them." 

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