Authored by Andrew Thornebrooke via The Epoch Times (emphasis ours),
Over eight days and using five missiles, U.S. forces shot down four objects flying above U.S. and Canadian airspace.
Those objects include a Chinese spy balloon and three unidentified objects, one roughly the size of a Volkswagen Beetle and another an octagonal black-metallic object.
It’s a historic time for the North American Aerospace Defense Command, the joint American–Canadian organization responsible for overseeing North American airspace and its defense, which in its 65-year history had never before shot down an aerial object over North America.
The United States’ encounters with unidentified aerial phenomena (UAP) over the past two weeks, as well as pilots’ hardships in identifying and engaging with them, highlight glaring weaknesses in U.S. military readiness, according to several defense and security experts.
Such shortcomings included an apparent inability to detect one of the objects until it had already entered U.S. airspace, as well as a failure to track and engage another object that lingered near sensitive U.S. nuclear silos in Montana before evading further detection by fighter jets.
Paul Crespo, a former Marine officer at the Defense Intelligence Agency and now president of the Center for American Defense Studies, believes that the problem is largely due to the size, heat, and speed of the UAPs encountered in recent weeks, all of which factor into the ease with which they could be seen on radar.
“The recent flurry of unidentifiable aerial phenomena over the United States and Canada underscores our weakness in detecting and identifying nontraditional aerial threats,” Crespo told The Epoch Times in an email.
“If it isn’t made of metal, super hot, and traveling hundreds if not thousands of miles an hour, our air surveillance and defense systems appear stymied.”
Crespo’s comments highlight a problem addressed by the White House, which has acknowledged that the three UAPs had very small radar cross sections and were difficult to spot. It’s a small problem with big consequences.
US in ‘New Strategic Era’
The problem has been years in the making, according to Sam Kessler, a national security and geopolitical analyst with risk management firm North Star Support Group.
Because U.S. forces are trained to use radar primarily to detect other fighter craft, much-related technology and intelligence gathering hasn’t been honed to find objects that otherwise look either benign on radar or don’t appear at all.
“The detection issues are complicated since the sensing and radar technologies typically used for surveillance and detection purposes are usually set up under a different system of threats, such as the use of objects and vehicles that are typically fast-moving and carry a significant heat signature,” Kessler said.
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