“The Chinese government, which has claimed the balloon was merely collecting weather data before being blown off course, called the vessel’s downing ‘a clear overreaction and a serious violation of international practice’ and said it ‘reserves the right to make further responses if necessary.'”

Also on Sunday, Bloomberg News reported that,

Beijing’s abrupt shift from expressing regret to threatening retaliation over the US’s spy-balloon claims reflects the domestic imperative for Xi Jinping to show he’s standing up for China against external pressure, further narrowing the window to reset ties before the US election season gets into full swing

Instead of establishing ‘guardrails’ and holding high-level meetings — including possibly with President Xi — Blinken ended up postponing his trip until a date yet to be determined,” the Bloomberg article said.

The Bloomberg article added that, “‘This incident tells us we haven’t found the floor of the relationship,’ said Drew Thompson, a visiting senior research fellow at the Lee Kuan Yew School of Public Policy in Singapore. ‘The relationship is not heading in a positive direction and could deteriorate further.’

“The balloon saga comes less than three months after President Joe Biden and Xi agreed to resume talks in their first face-to-face meeting as leaders in Bali, a detente that has largely held despite the US’s efforts to support Taiwan’s military and curb Chinese access to cutting-edge semiconductors. While few expected major breakthroughs from Blinken’s scrapped visit, it was seen as an effort to preserve the status quo.”