According to NBC News, the Pentagon decided not to shoot it down because falling debris could harm someone on the ground.
A Pentagon official told reporters that the Defense Dept. has “very high confidence” it is a Chinese high-altitude balloon. And that its purpose is to fly over to collect sensitive information from military sites.
On Wednesday, US military leaders, including Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin and General Mark Milley, the US Joint Chiefs of Staff chairman, met to assess the threat.
A senior defense official claims no “significantly enhanced threat” exists to any US intelligence or information because officials “know exactly where this balloon is and exactly where it’s passing over.”
According to the official been spotted overhead in the US in the past few years.
But this particular balloon “is appearing to hang out for a longer period of time” and is “more persistent” than previous Chinese spy crafts.