Experts say green LASER beams spotted above Hawaii last month were from Chinese satellite
Experts believe a Chinese satellite fired down green laser beams that were seen over Hawaii last month.
The sighting arrived as tensions between the US and China escalate considerably in the wake of balloon-gate, which ended with the US shooting down a Chinese spy balloon that may have obtained sensitive information.
Scientists from the National Astronomical Observative of Japan (NAOJ) tweeted late last month that their camera had ‘captured green laser lights in the cloudy sky over Maunakea, Hawaii on January 28.’
Video footage showed a number of mysterious green beams shooting across the dark sky.
The lights, wrote the agency, were likely from a NASA satellite.
On February 6, however, NAOJ backtracked and said that the lights were ‘likely’ from Chinese satellite Daqi-1/AEMS.
Green lights captured by the Subari-Asashi Star Camera were initially thought to come from a US satellite, but were later discovered to likely have come from a Chinese satellite. They rained down over Hawaii in late January
The green light realization follows a week dominated by news of a massive Chinese spy balloon that traversed the US possibly collecting sensitive data
‘We really appreciate their effort in the identification of the light. We are sorry about our confusion related to this event and its potential on the ICESat-2 (US satellite) team,’ wrote NAOJ.
The confusion most likely occurred because the ICESat-2 satellite also shoots bright green lasers.
The unexpected lightshow happened as tensions between the US and China become increasingly precarious.
During the first week of February, the US shot down a massive Chinese spy balloon off the coast of South Carolina, after it spent days traversing the country from west to east.
Late last week, the US shot down another flying ‘object’ that was moving over Alaskan waters.
It is unclear, according to the Pentagon, what the goal of the second object was.
National Security Council spokesman John Kirby told reporters that the object was near the size of a car – much smaller than the first spy balloon, which was roughly the size of three buses.
On Saturday, the US shot down yet another unidentified flying object making its way over Canada’s Yukon Territory after inappropriately entering Canadian airspace.
Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said that ‘Canadian and US aircraft were scrambled, and a US F-22 successfully fired at the object.’
It is unclear if the most recent two airborne objects were sent by China.
The National Astronomical Observative of Japan initially reported that the lights over Hawaii were coming from a US satellite, that also shoots green lasers, but backtracked days later and claimed instead they likely came from a Chinese satellite
Sailors assigned to Explosive Ordinance Disposal Group 2 recover a suspected Chinese high-altitude surveillance balloon that was downed by the United States over the weekend over U.S. territorial waters off the coast of Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
The Chinese spy balloon was allowed to drift across the U.S. before it was downed by U.S. jets
China’s ‘spy balloon’ that unnerved millions of Americans across the country earlier this month is part of a larger global surveillance plot by Beijing ‘s authoritarian government, the Pentagon has said
Republicans have criticized US President Joe Biden for his initial handling of the Chinese spy balloon, for allowing it to traverse the whole country before being shot down.
The head of the House select committee on China claimed on Sunday that it was not a ‘coincidence’ that Beijing sent a spy balloon over the US ahead of an official US state visit.
Rep. Mike Gallagher (R-WI) said the device was meant for Xi Jinping to show President Joe Biden what he ‘can get away with’ during an appearance on WABC’s Cats Roundtable.
‘It wouldn’t surprise me if this whole thing were intended to send a message to us while our Secretary of State was visiting,’ he said.
Gallagher suggested Sunday morning that he did not believe China’s claims that it was just a weather balloon blown off course, claiming it’s ‘not a coincidence’ it was spotted over Malmstrom Air Force Base in Montana earlier this month.
He added, ‘I don’t think it’s a coincidence that it was timed to coincide with [Secretary of State Antony Blinken’s] visit to China.’
Furor over the balloon, which came at a time of historically low relations between Beijing and Washington, forced Blinken to cancel his planned state visit meant for last week where he was expected to meet with President Xi.
‘We don’t have proof of that yet, but that would be well within the Chinese Communist Party playbook of attempting to humiliate us on the world stage,’ Gallagher told host John Catsimatidis of his claim.
‘The message is: “Look what we can get away with. And you won’t do anything about it. You’ll still come crawling back.”‘
The Pentagon said last week that the balloon had been part of a vast Chinese surveillance program, spanning as many as 40 countries across multiple continents.
The goal, Defense officials said, was to likely gather information on other nations’ military capabilities.