– Air Force general in charge of nuclear missiles fired over ‘conduct’ (FOX News, Oct 11, 2013):
The two-star general in charge of all Air Force nuclear missiles was fired Friday following a probe into alleged personal misbehavior — just days after another key official overseeing U.S. nuclear power was relieved of duty.
The Air Force announced Friday that Maj. Gen. Michael Carey was removed from command of the 20th Air Force, which is responsible for three wings of intercontinental ballistic missiles — a total of 450 missiles at three bases across the country.
The circumstances of Carey’s firing were shrouded in mystery. A senior U.S. Defense official said he was fired over “conduct.” Officials said it did not have to do with gambling, or the loss of a nuclear weapon, or sexual misconduct.
But they would not say what specifically led to the decision.
Lt. Gen. James Kowalski, commander of Air Force Global Strike Command, made the decision based on details from an inspector general probe into Carey’s behavior on a “temporary duty assignment,” according to the Air Force.
“20th AF continues to execute its mission of around-the-clock nuclear deterrence in a safe, secure and effective manner,” Kowalski said in a statement. “It’s unfortunate that I’ve had to relieve an officer who’s had an otherwise distinctive career spanning 35 years of commendable service.”
Earlier in the week, the Navy announced that the deputy commander of U.S. nuclear forces, Vice Adm. Tim Giardina, was relieved of duty amid a military investigation of allegations that he used counterfeit chips at an Iowa casino.
The move was already exceedingly rare, and followed by Friday’s decision at the Air Force.
Kowalski has selected the vice commander of Air Force Global Strike Command, Maj. Gen. Jack Weinstein, to temporarily replace Carey as head of 20th Air Force.