China this week ridiculed the Biden administration for focusing its energies on harmless balloon objects in U.S. airspace while basically ignoring the giant chemical fire in Ohio that has thousands of residents worried about long-term health consequences.
Wang Wenbin responded to a claim from the White House that China was “deflecting” from the spy balloon incident by sanctioning U.S. companies this week, and accused the Biden administration of continuing to focus on China even at the expense of the health of its own citizens.
“Speaking of ‘deflecting,’ can the U.S. tell us why it is able to see the ‘balloon’ 18,000 meters above the ground, but seems to have been blind to the toxic mushroom cloud of vinyl chloride over Ohio?” Wang said.
The Biden administration has been criticized for downplaying the derailment of a train in East Palestine, Ohio, that was carrying toxic chemicals, including vinyl chloride. The crash, and the eventual controlled explosion created a thick, black plume of smoke. People reported illness and the death of fish and animals.
It took Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg 10 days to comment on the incident, and EPA Administrator Michael Regan visited the state 13 days after the derailment.
This week, Biden’s Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) turned down Ohio’s request for federal aid to deal with the environmental disaster.