(CNSNews.com) – White House spokeswoman Karine Jean-Pierre began Monday’s press briefing with reassurance to those Americans who are worried about space invaders. No kidding.
“And one last thing before I turn it over to the Admiral,” she told reporters in her opening remarks, standing next to National Security Council spokesman John Kirby:
“I just wanted to make sure we address this from the White House. I know there have been questions and concerns about this, but there is no — again, no indication of aliens or extraterrestrial activity — (laughter) — with these recent takedowns.
“Again, there is no indication of aliens or terrestrial (sic) activity with these recent takedowns. Wanted to make sure that the American people knew that, all of you knew that.
“And it was important for us to say that from here because we’ve been hearing a lot about it.”
A reporter asked Jean-Pierre, “Would you tell us if there were, really?”
“I’m just — you know, I loved E.T., the movie. But I’m gon — I’m just going to leave it there. (Laughter.)
“With that, with all seriousness, I know there’s a lot of questions about the flying objects. Admiral John Kirby is here with us today, and he’s going to have a topper — couple of things to say at the top about it and then take your questions.”
Retired Rear Admiral John Kirby told reporters the three most recent “objects” shot down by the U.S. Air Force will be difficult to recover:
“Efforts are actively underway right now at all sites to find what is left of those objects so that we can better understand and communicate with the American people what they are.
“I think it’s important to remind: the objects in Alaska and Canada are in pretty remote terrain — ice, wilderness, all of that — making it difficult to find them in winter weather. And the object over Lake Huron now lies in what is probably very deep water.”
Kirby said NORAD will continue to monitor the air space while the Biden administration continues to consult “with allies and partners on the challenge of unidentified aerial phenomenon and how we can all work together to deal with that challenge.”
He said the Biden administration is engaging with their counterparts “to share information and to try to gain their perspectives as well. Again, this is an issue that affects everybody around the world,” Kirby continued:
“Third, we will continue to brief members of Congress and relevant state leadership on what we are doing and what we learn. The President has made this a very top priority.”
“We’ve also kept Congress briefed generally on this issue of Chinese surveillance balloons, including classified briefings last August. And last week, administration officials provided classified briefings for all senators and all members of the House of Representatives on the PRC surveillance balloon. We fully expect and anticipate and support the ability to continue these briefings in the days ahead.
“And fourth, the President, through his National Security Advisor, has today directed an interagency team to study the broader policy implications for detection, analysis, and disposition of unidentified aerial objects that pose either safety or security risks.”
A reporter asked Kirby why President Biden doesn’t directly address the American people about such an “unprecedented” situation:
“I have — we have been, I think, as transparent as we can be,” Kirby said.
“I won’t speak for the President’s personal speaking schedule. But, I mean, he has been deeply engaged in every one of these decisions. He has been kept informed, including as of this morning, on what’s going on with recovery efforts.
“And he’s very much staying on top of the issue and directing his team to make sure we are properly consulting and briefing not just members of Congress, but state leaders as well. And, of course, you know, we’re also doing what we can in the public sphere.”
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