US Air Force nuclear unit fumbles on key security test
WASHINGTON (AP) - An Air Force unit that operates one-third of the US land-based nuclear missiles has failed a safety and security inspection, marking the second major setback this year for a force charged with the military's most sensitive mission, the general in charge of the nuclear air force told The Associated Press.
Lt. Gen. James M. Kowalski, commander of Air Force Global Strike Command, said a team of "relatively low-ranking" airmen failed one exercise as part of a broader inspection, which began last week and ended Tuesday.
He said that for security reasons he could not be specific about the team or the exercise.
"This unit fumbled on this exercise," Lt. Gen. Kowalski said by telephone from his headquarters at Barksdale Air Force Base, Louisiana, adding that this did not call into question the safety or control of nuclear weapons at Malmstrom Air Force Base in Montana.