(NewsNation) — Hal Kempfer, retired Marine Corps intelligence officer, said the U.S. “did a pretty good job” of handing the Chinese balloon.
“I think we did pretty good, overall,” Kempfer said Saturday night on “NewsNation Prime.” “I there’s gonna be a lot of criticism, and there has been against the White House for letting it float across. … “It may have been that we were mitigating the damage of this all along, and said, ‘Why don’t we just find out as much as we can about what they can do?'”
The U.S. shot down the Chinese spy balloon on Saturday afternoon off the Carolina coast.
President Joe Biden said earlier Saturday that officials were “going to take care” of the balloon that had been floating above the U.S. for days.
Some conservatives, including former President Donald Trump, suggested shooting it down earlier. However, on the advice of his defense team, Biden had previously chosen not to do so because of the danger falling debris could pose to residents on the ground.
Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin on Wednesday said Biden did give authorization to take down the balloon as soon as the mission could be accomplished “without undue risk” to people in the balloon’s path.
Watch Kempfer’s full analysis in the video player above.