Conventional Thinking

Air Force Global Strike Command is still formulating its recommendations for how it will manage the portion of the B-52 bomber fleet that will lose the nuclear mission and perform only conventional roles henceforth under the United States’ new nuclear force structure, says Lt. Gen. Frank Klotz, AFGSC commander. “I think we have a very good approach, which will have minimal impact on the training and operations of the B-52 force,” Klotz told reporters Wednesday at AFA’s Air & Space Conference. He said he was unable to discuss these plans in more detail since it “is still very much a deliberative process” within the Defense Department. As part of the new force structure, the Air Force will maintain up to 60 nuclear-capable bombers. Since all 20 B-2s will retain a dual role, USAF will convert at least 36 of the nation’s 76 B-52s to conventional-only platforms. (For more, see Four Are the Floor and BUFFs are Staying Put from the Daily Report archives.)