Diplomatic relations between the US and China has literally been left up in the air after a so-called “Chinese spy balloon” was spotted in American airspace, and subsequently shot down by order of President Joe Biden.
Now UK YouTubers Josh Pieters and Archie Manners – known for pranking Tiger King star Carole Baskin and presenting far-right commentator Katie Hopkins with the ‘Campaign to Unify the Nation’ trophy (we’ll leave you to figure out what that spells) – have decided to wade into foreign affairs with their latest YouTube video.
Making use of the fact that embassies in other countries are still legally considered to be part of that state’s territory and jurisdiction (hence why the Metropolitan Police couldn’t arrest Julian Assange while he was in the Ecuadorian embassy, for example), the duo realised they could technically fly a balloon with a GoPro attached over “China”.
Ah, a simple case of tit for tat.
After one test run, their lawyer warning that “potentially there are issues” and a member of the public asking them if they were erecting a spy balloon (which they, naturally, denied), the pair let it hover over the Chinese embassy in Portland Place, London.
“We had succeeded. Our spycam was staring into the windows of China. We even spotted a man on the roof,” Pieters said.
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We Flew a Spy Balloon Over Chinawww.youtube.com
Though, perhaps predictably, it wasn’t long before police arrived on the scene and told them to deflate the balloon because “people inside might be offended” by it.
“We don’t want to offend the Chinese – that’s definitely not part of the plan,” replied Manners, perhaps with a little bit of subtle sarcasm involved, before popping the balloon and ending the stunt.
Concluding the seven-minute video, Pieters said: “We know nothing about global politics, but we do know that if the world’s largest country invaded your nation’s airspace with a giant spy balloon, it’s not that hard to send your own giant spy balloon back into theirs.
“Just try not to get arrested!”
Always helpful, yes.
Viewers have expressed their enjoyment at the prank, with fellow YouTube trickster Max Fosh – who recently pranked a real estate agent into letting him take a poo in a £10 million penthouse – commenting “what a vid”.
“From funny videos to international politics and war, you two never cease to impress,” wrote another.
A third posted: “Cheers boys, just started World War III – packing my bags for the frontline.”
Lesson learned, folks: you really shouldn’t pop by (sorry) the Chinese embassy with a spy balloon following a major international scandal.
You learn something new every day…
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