March 27, 2014
Commanders fired in nuke missile cheating scandal
The Washington Post reports:
The Air Force fired nine mid-level nuclear commanders Thursday and will discipline dozens of junior officers at a nuclear missile base in response to an exam-cheating scandal that spanned a far longer period than originally reported. Air Force officials called the moves unprecedented in the history of the intercontinental ballistic missile force.
The Associated Press last year revealed a series of security and other problems in the nuclear force, including a failed safety and security inspection at Malmstrom Air Force Base, Mont., where the cheating happened.
In a bid to correct root causes of the missile corps’ failings — including low morale and weak management — the Air Force also announced a series of new or expanded programs to improve leadership development, to modernize the three ICBM bases and to reinforce “core values” including integrity.
Air Force Secretary Deborah Lee James, the service’s top civilian official, had promised to hold officers at Malmstrom accountable once the cheating investigation was completed and the scope of the scandal was clear. None of the nine fired commanders was directly involved in the cheating, but each was determined to have failed in his or her leadership responsibilities.