May 19, 1994 |
"Strategic Air Command," a bit of Cold War propaganda about as circumspect as an above-ground nuclear test, is still worth seeing if you get a kick out of aviation or quaint period pieces. James Stewart pulls on his trademark aw-shucks persona as he plays a pro baseball player and World War II pilot called back into the service to fly the huge cigar-like B-36 bomber for SAC. Like many flying pictures, the action doesn't truly get off the ground until the star does.
June 9, 1992 |
It has no view. But for $250,000 you can get your own 44,000-square-foot, climate-controlled, three-story atomic bomb-proof Cold War bunker, complete with glassed-in command theater. "It's something of a white elephant," real estate agent Esta Busi said. But she has had a few inquiries for a former Strategic Air Command bunker underneath a mountain in this college town. "It's the only one (for sale) in the U.S.A.," reads the advertisement. "$250,000, a wild imagination . . . and it's yours."
June 2, 1992 |
The Air Force, bidding farewell to an era, on Monday dismantled one of its most colorful and controversial Cold War commands and christened a successor designed for a world of Persian Gulf-style conflicts. Under rainy skies, the Strategic Air Command laid down its organizational shield in a cavernous hangar thundering with the sound of martial music.
September 30, 1991 |
Behind a barbed-wire fence, maintenance workers were busy Sunday removing nuclear bombs from B-52s. For the first time in 40 years, the planes would sit with their bellies empty. The "alert" facility here, home base for the men and women who were poised for war on a moment's notice, was a ghost town Sunday. Nearly everyone had gone home. "It's kinda like winning the war," said Capt. Bruce Adams, a B-52 bomber commander who has served eight years at Fairchild, intermittently on alert.
September 29, 1991 |
U.S. forces operating strategic bombers and some ballistic missiles were ordered Saturday to "stand down" in the first moves to implement President Bush's dramatic nuclear-arms-reduction package. Defense Secretary Dick Cheney, acting on the President's orders, directed the crews of 280 U.S. strategic bombers and 450 Minuteman II missiles to relax the hair-trigger alerts they have maintained for more than 30 years.
June 24, 1991 |
In the wake of the Persian Gulf War, the Strategic Air Command is stepping up efforts to transform itself from the guardian of the nation's nuclear deterrent to the spearhead of its long-range conventional bomber strike force. At Ellsworth Air Force Base, under the roar of bombers once trained almost exclusively for nuclear war, the service is building the engine of this transformation, a bomber pilot's dream called the Strategic Warfare Center.