News first reported by the Montgomery Advertiser has spread fast about the recent discovery by two respected historians—one with the Tuskegee Airmen organization and one with the Air Force—that the famed World War II Tuskegee Airmen did not have a perfect bomber protection record. William Holton, historian for Tuskegee Airmen, Inc., and Daniel Haulman with the Air Force Historical Research Agency, have found combat mission records that indicate there were some aircraft losses. In fact, it appears they found the records at least two years ago. Author Alan Gropman told the Advertiser that it would take “more readings of those mission reports to settle this once and for all.” He also said that the loss of three or four bombers would be “miniscule compared to the losses incurred by white pilots who also escorted bombers.” (Read our 1997 article on Tuskegee leader Benjamin Davis by Gropman.)
In a nighttime ceremony contrived to continue concealment of many of its features, the new B-21 bomber rolled out of Northrop Grumman's Palmdale, Calif. plant Dec. 2. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin said the aircraft's advanced technology represents "deterrence, the American way."