Monday, August 03, 2015

B-1 Bombers Shifting to Strike Command

According to a recent AP item B-1 bombers from Ellsworth AFB and Dyess AFB are joining their long-range B-2 and B-52 bomber counterparts under a single Air Force command.

The Air Force is grouping its bombers under Air Force Global Strike Command, a nuclear-capable command based at Barksdale AFB, in a transition that will be effective Oct. 1 of this year. This leadership change also puts the Air Force's next-generation bomber program, frequently called the Long Range Strike Bomber, under the same auspices.

More than 60 aircraft and about 7,000 people will shift from Air Combat Command to Global Strike Command, according to the Air Force.

South Dakota U.S. Sen. John Thune said in a statement said that moving all the bomber wings under the control of Global Strike Command will make for a better transition as the Air Force plans for the Long Range Strike Bomber.

The B-1 bombers from Ellsworth and Dyess will join B-52 bombers from Minot AFB, among others, as part of Global Strike Command. The Air Force said the leadership change is expected to be "imperceptible" to most of the airmen on the bases.

"Consolidating all of our Air Force assets in this critical mission area under a single command will help provide a unified voice to maintain the high standards necessary in stewardship of our nation's bomber forces," Secretary of the Air Force Deborah Lee James said in a statement.