posted on Sep, 11 2007 @ 04:49 PM
Ok guys, I think that I may have some fairly relevant information for this story.
First of all, nothing in this is classified, just maybe more insider info than anything.
I am in the Air Force, and currently work in the nuclear missile field. Although I do not work at an ops. base, I work with 2 different guys who have
worked at the both squadrons involved in this "mishap"
A Master Sergeant who worked at Minot AFB for years, and a TSgt who worked at Barksdale AFB in the very same squadron that received the B-52 last
week. He even went so far as to say that he would have definitely been involved in this mission had he still been there. He said, had he been at
Minot, there is no way that this would have happened. I sat down and talked to these two guys about this, because I found it very curious, being in
the AF, knowing how anal they are about things...most especially nukes.
On the Minot end, I was told that it is pretty much mindbogeling that 5 (or 6?) active nukes were able to be loaded on the plane, unless there was a
total collapse of all safety checks and procedures.
First of all, there is a transport crew that is in charge of taking the missile from where they were working on it, to the plane. They have a packet
of information for each missile that has specific checklists to be gone over before they ever move onto the flight line. Well, its a fact that 12
ACM's were used, and I am assuming that the guys just failed to do the checks on all of the ACM's...
After the trans. guys check all the missiles out, and make sure there are no active warheads, they are taken to the plane. When the load team
receives the missiles, they to preform a test to make sure that there are no active nukes on board. They then load the ACM's onto the pylons on the
B-52. BTW, that particular missile is too large to be stored in the bomb bay, therefore had to be carried on the wings. There is a window on the
missile, and all you have to do is flash a light into the window to see whether there is a warhead in there or not...so obviously someone dropped the
Once the missiles are loaded on the plane, the crew is supposed to do ONE MORE CHECK, before they take off, as a last resort to make sure nothing was
missed in the other 2 checks. The pilots cannot inheriently tell whether the missiles are active or not, there is something placed in them to tell
the system that they are there, active or not..
These warheads are pretty much useless without the codes, and it is not possible for anyone to get the codes, unless we, (we being the AF) wanted them
to have them. Without the codes, the warhead is useless...that is just a fact. There is almost zero chance of any damage even if the plane crashed
and the missile exploded. One of the guys said he went on a test mission where the launched one of these exact same missiles, with a dummy warhead on
it...The missiles conventional explosives went off, but after they dug the warhead out of a 20 ft crater with a backhoe, it was still in perfect
shape. There really isnt any way for anything to happen to it unless it is detonated. These kind of nukes dont work like ICBM's, as they are not
always "on". They have to be turned on, and that takes two people, using codes. Also, the codes are always rotating, and always changing, so
someone cant just get them, and make them work on the nuke.
Once they got to Barksdale, right away it would have been discovered that the missiles were active, and then all hell would have broken lose. The
ground crew would have discovered the nukes, doing the same checks that Minot should have done, pre-flight.
After hearing all of this, I still dont know what to think, and the guys I talked to still dont know how such a huge failure could have happened on
such a large scale...but they both agree that even in the wrong hands it would be almost impossible for the warhead to be used maliciously.
Still, very strange indeed...