Mystery Object Remains Floating Over Montana, U.S. Military Says It’s ‘Monitoring Situation’

Daily Mail

(Daily Mail) A Montana congressman said on Saturday night that he had been told an unidentified object was spotted over his district, forcing the temporary closure of airspace – and the search for it would resume at daylight.

Matt Rosendale, a Republican elected in 2020, said he had been briefed by the Department of Defense, while he was at a Lincoln Reagan dinner.


Fighter jets were scrambled and airspace above Havre, a town of 10,000 people, 30 miles south of the Canadian border, was shut at 7:50pm before being reopened about 50 minutes later.

‘I’m at an event, a Lincoln Reagan dinner in Columbus, Montana right now,’ Rosendale told Fox News.

‘And DOD called me as I have been sitting here and started giving me briefings to tell me what was going on.

‘I clarified with them that this is actually the fourth balloon, OK.’

Matt Rosendale, a Montana congressman whose district includes Havre, said on Saturday night he had been told the U.S. military was 'going to track the object until it gets light again'

Matt Rosendale, a Montana congressman whose district includes Havre, said on Saturday night he had been told the U.S. military was ‘going to track the object until it gets light again’

Earlier on Saturday, Justin Trudeau, the Canadian prime minister, confirmed an object had been shot down by U.S. F-22s in Yukon, as part of a joint Canadian-U.S. operation.

Rosendale continued: ‘The first we shot down over the Atlantic. One was shot down before it entered into Alaska’s airspace. A third was shot down, Trudeau ordered over Canada. So now we’re talking about a fourth incident.’

He said he was told the Pentagon would follow the object, but were unable to shoot it down because it was dark.

‘DOD told me that they are going to be tracking the object – they can’t even say exactly what it is – they are going to track the object until it gets light again,’ he said.

‘They don’t have the ability to put any more eyes on it with aircraft until it’s light again.

‘And then tomorrow morning we’ll be dealing with it.’

NORAD, the North American Aerospace Defense Command, issued a statement shortly after Rosendale’s interview which left it unclear whether there was indeed an object, or if it was a false alarm.

NORAD said a ‘radar anomaly’ was seen, but jets ‘did not identify any object to correlate to the radar hits.’

‘NORAD will continue to monitor the situation,’ they added:

Greg Gianforte, the governor of Montana, tweeted that he had been briefed at the White House.

‘I received a briefing tonight at the White House about an object in Montana airspace,’ he tweeted.

‘I will continue to receive regular updates.

‘With questions about the Chinese spy balloon still unanswered, the Biden administration must be fully forthcoming with Montanans and all Americans.’

Rosendale’s assertion that the object could not be shot down because it was dark was greeted with much mockery online.





One man joked: ‘NORCOM to pilots: “Well guys, we’re all getting pretty tired here and it’s close to quitting time. Let’s all just go home, get some shut-eye, and continue this at, let’s say, nine-ish.”‘

Another added: ‘We have flashlights maybe.’

‘What hours is our military open?’ another asked.

‘That Montana law that says no objects can be shot down after 5pm really needs to be changed,’ said another.

And another remarked: ‘Gee I hope no-one ever bombs us at nighttime.’

Trudeau announced earlier on Saturday that he had requested U.S. and Canadian forces scramble to intercept ‘an unidentified object that violated Canadian airspace’, and a U.S. F-22 shot it down at 3:41pm Eastern Standard Time.

Canada’s defense minister said it was a ‘a small cylindrical object’ that was not as big as the South Carolina spy balloon.

A NORAD spokesman, Maj. Olivier Gallant, said on Saturday evening the military had determined what it was but would not reveal details.

Two F-22s were dispatched from the U.S. from Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson in Alaska; and two F-18s from Cold Lake Air Base in Alberta, Canada.

Instructions were given that whoever had the first clear shot should shoot it down.

It was shot down with an AIM-9X missile at 3:41pm Eastern Standard Time, and was flying at about 40,000 feet. The missile is described by the manufacturer as ‘the most advanced infrared-tracking, short-range, air-to-air and surface-to-air missile in the world.’

The incident came a day after Joe Biden ordered another ‘unidentified object’ be shot down over Alaska, and a week after a spy balloon which crossed the U.S. was shot down off South Carolina.

Havre, home to 10,000 people in northern Montana, is 30 miles south of the Canadian border

Havre, home to 10,000 people in northern Montana, is 30 miles south of the Canadian border

Justin Trudeau, Canada's prime minister, is seen on Tuesday. On Saturday he announced an 'unidentified object' had been shot down over the Yukon

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Justin Trudeau, Canada’s prime minister, is seen on Tuesday. On Saturday he announced an ‘unidentified object’ had been shot down over the Yukon

The airport in the tiny village of Mayo, home to 200 people in remote Yukon wilderness, was closed while the operation was taking place.

A senior government source told CBC News that the object crossed into Canadian territory on Saturday morning.

Trudeau tweeted that Canadian teams were now working to recover the debris. The debris was being monitored from a CP-140.

‘I ordered the take down of an unidentified object that violated Canadian airspace,’ he tweeted on Saturday.

‘@NORADCommand shot down the object over the Yukon. Canadian and U.S. aircraft were scrambled, and a U.S. F-22 successfully fired at the object.

Trudeau said that he had been in contact with Biden about the intrusion.

He thanked NORAD – the North American Aerospace Defense Command, based in Colorado Springs, Colorado – for their work with his forces.

‘I spoke with President Biden this afternoon. Canadian Forces will now recover and analyze the wreckage of the object,’ Trudeau said.

‘Thank you to NORAD for keeping the watch over North America.’

The involvement of U.S. jets raised eyebrows among some Canadians, with questions asked as to why Canada itself wasn’t able to deal with the situation.

‘So it’s just confirmed that this ‘object’ over Canadian airspace was taken out by a U.S. F-22 jet,’ tweeted Michael Chong, the shadow foreign minister.

‘We do not have the capacity to defend ourselves and our sovereignty. Hard questions need to be asked about the state of the Canadian armed forces.’

Canada’s defense minister, Anita Anand, praised the joint operation.

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