Yes, I read about this on the DRUDGE REPORT this morning. There were 17 officers decertified at Minot AFB because of the ORI the missile wing bearly passed at the end of March.
Bruce Blair is of course right in his assessment. But that still points to the lack of leadership in the USAF
nuclear forces since SAC
was all about the mission of nuclear deterrence, and failing that nuclear war. SAC
had just 4 missions, maintain a nuclear weapons inventory and train to use it if directed by the POTUS, strategic recon, management of USAF
air refueling assets, and conventional warfare. SAC
was in a constant state of readiness and a constant state of training. SAC
also flew many operational missions that few people ever knew about.
But, in SAC
the missile crews were on an equal footing with the bomber aircrews. They had (roughly) the same promotion rates as bomber crew officers and equal opportunities to move into staff positions later in their careers.
Today, Global Strike Command (GSC) is a secondary command and not considered a "combat command" (as the old SAC
, TAC, and ADC were) until it comes time to launch missiles. ACC
is today's only combat command in the USAF
has had serious problems in leadership of its nuclear forces and weapons controls since at least the year 2000. In fact an AFCOS and SECAF were fired because of several incidents involving nuclear weapons controls by the SECDEF just a few years ago. Those firings resulted in GSC coming into being.
I'm afraid this problem will continue to plague the USAF
Leadership until preparations to fight and control a nuclear war is restored as a primary mission. Yes, that is expensive, but it is the only way to provide the leadership needed.
Okay, I'll get off my "bring SAC
back" soapbox now.