SEPT. 5, 2007 - MARKEY APPALLED AT UNPRECEDENTED AIR FORCE NUKE LOSS

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Representative Edward J. Markey (D-MA), a senior member of the House Homeland Security Committee and the co-chair of the House Bipartisan Task Force on Non-Proliferation, expressed outrage today at reports that the Air Force mistakenly loaded five nuclear warheads on a B52 bomber for a cross-country flight. The warheads should have been removed from the Advanced Cruise Missiles before they were transported to their decommissioning site. According to reports, no one in the Air Force, including the B52 pilots, knew the whereabouts of the warheads until the bomber landed over three hours later.

“Nuclear weapons are the most sensitive and dangerous items that exist in the world. It is absolutely inexcusable that the Air Force lost track of these five nuclear warheads, even for a short period of time,” said Rep. Markey

“Nothing like this has ever been reported before and we have been assured for decades that it was impossible. The complete breakdown of the Air Force command and control over enough nuclear weapons to destroy several cities has frightening implications not only for the Air Force, but for the security of our entire nuclear weapons stockpile.

“This frightening incident highlights that the Bush administration’s plan to design and build a new arsenal of nuclear warheads is dangerous, especially when we can’t keep track of the warheads we already have. We should put the breaks on the President’s program for new nuclear weapons, and solve the daunting challenges posed by those weapons we already own,” concluded Markey.

 

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 5, 2007

CONTACT: Jessica Schafer, 202.225.2836