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Federal panel votes to remove 15 F-16s from Ellington Field (moved from ATSNN)

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posted on Aug, 26 2005 @ 11:01 PM
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Well it seems the U.S. Base Closure and Realignment Commission has recomended the retireing of the 15 F-16 fighters that patrol the area around Ellington Field in Houston (the chemical plant capitol of the United States), specifically the 147th Texas National Guard Fighter Wing in 2007.
 



www.chron.com
WASHINGTON — The commission considering military base closures voted today to retire 15 F-16s at Ellington Field near Houston, despite concerns raised about homeland security.

A last-minute effort was made to keep the planes at Ellington, with commissioner James Hansen saying he was reminded of the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks when he visited the area. With Houston's petrochemical industry.

``If there's one place that I could put my finger on and say what's the No. 1 place that if a rogue aircraft came in and you had trouble it would really have a huge amount of trouble, it would have to be Houston, Texas,'' Hansen said. ``Boy, that could just bring America to its knees, almost.''


Please visit the link provided for the complete story.


According to commissioner James Hill, fighters from Kelly Field in San Antonio over 300 miles away could protect the petrochemical industry surrounding Houston (the 4th largest city in the U.S.) which provides most of the United States refined oil products including most plastics and gas and is also home to the Port of Houston which speaks for itself and that decisions on needed security should be left to U.S. Northern Command, which is responsible for homeland defense.

Could a fighter group over 300 miles away protect the Houston areas' petrochemical industry in a timely manner? I don't see how. I consider this option unrealistic. If there was a fighter group containing 15 planes in New York City on 9/11 then things may have been different. According to this reasoning if a major event happened here or towards the east along the Gulf Coast it would take at least 20 minutes on full afterburner for a fighter group to respond from San Antonio or Oklahoma to Houston.

Something else to think about is whether or not the U.S. Base Closure and Realignment Commission has the authority to control State National Guard Units as evidenced by the link below. U.S. District Judge John R. Padova said today in Philadelphia that Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld should have gotten consent from Gov. Ed Rendell of Pennsylvania before moving to deactivate the 111th Fighter Wing of the Pennsylvania Air National Guard. I'm hoping Tom DeLay who is the representative for Ellington Field will get together with the Governer and file suit against this or the Bush will not sign off on this. I can't see this passing in it's current form but I'm not a politician either.


Related News Links:
www.chron.com

[edit on 26-8-2005 by TexasConspiracyNut]

[edit on 27-8-2005 by TexasConspiracyNut]




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