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U.S. Air Force Fires Two Star General

Arash Zandi |
October 11, 2013 | 7:08 p.m. PDT

Executive Producer

A U.S. Air Force soldier and a fighter jet (Wikimedia Commons)
A U.S. Air Force soldier and a fighter jet (Wikimedia Commons)
The United States Air Force has fired Major General Michael Carey, who was second in command for nuclear missiles, on Friday, after an inspector general’s inquiry into “reports of misbehavior” while on assignment. The commander of Air Force Global Strike Command, Lieutenant General James Kowalski, made the decision due to what he said was a “loss of trust and confidence in his leadership and judgment”. Kowalski went on to add that, "20th AF continues to execute its mission of around-the-clock nuclear deterrence in a safe, secure and effective manner. It’s unfortunate that I've had to relieve an officer who's had an otherwise distinctive career spanning 35 years of commendable service." Carey was part of the 20th Air Force and was responsible for its 450 nuclear missiles. He has been reassigned to an unidentified position in the Air Force until results of the investigation have returned. I spoke to the Air Force Press Desk of the Pentagon earlier today and they have informed me that results of the investigation will be available in three to six weeks.

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Brigadier General Les Kodlick, the Air Force’s chief spokesman, said the ongoing Inspector General’s investigation had been brought about by “reports of personal misbehavior” during a temporary duty assignment, which is the military’s term for business travel. A statement released by the Air Force noted that, "The allegations are not related to operational readiness or the inspection results of any 20th AF unit, nor do they involve sexual misconduct.” Kodlick did not reveal where the personal misbehavior in question may have occurred or what it involved but ensured that it did not involve criminal behavior. Kodlick went on to say that personal behavior is an essential part of nuclear command because, “It is a position of great trust and responsibility and the nuclear deterrence mission is one of great focus and discipline. Personal behavior is vital to that, especially from a commander.” Earlier this year, two of the three missile wings under Carey’s authority received less than satisfactory marks in regular annual inspections.

This week, President Barack Obama relieved the second in command officer at U.S. Strategic Command, which oversees the military’s nuclear forces. Vice Admiral James Giardina had been suspended following a criminal investigation into his potential use of counterfeit poker chips at a casino in Iowa. Obama was involved because the president is the only person who can relieve a three and four star officer from his post. Giardina was subsequently reassigned to an undetermined position in the Navy.

Read more at USA Today.

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