May 8th, 2013
03:53 PM ET

17 stripped of authority to launch nuclear missiles

In an unprecedented action, an Air Force commander has stripped 17 of his officers of their authority to control and launch nuclear missiles.

The 17 are being sent to undergo 60 to 90 days of intensive refresher training on how to do their jobs. The action comes after their unit performed poorly on an inspection and one officer was investigated for potential compromise of nuclear launch codes, according to Lt. Col. John Dorrian, an Air Force spokesman.

The story was first reported by The Associated Press.

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Filed under: Military • U.S. Air Force
soundoff (35 Responses)
  1. bobcat (in a hat)©

    Just think, in a few million years Barney will be motor oil

    May 9, 2013 at 12:14 pm | Report abuse |
    • banasy©

      Barney Frank?

      May 9, 2013 at 12:30 pm | Report abuse |
    • Barney Rubble

      I already am motor oil.

      May 9, 2013 at 6:10 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bharnihh, Emperor of the Holy Lizard Empire, 76 Million BCE

      Those darn asteroids! I had it all and now look at me. Turned into car exhaust and plastic shopping bags. Oh, the humanity!

      May 10, 2013 at 1:45 am | Report abuse |
  2. Portland tony

    It's not a question of forgetting how to push the button....there's a lot of BS these guys have to know...protocol, where the trash cans are, etc... They got sloppy so they get a refresher course on military protocol....happens every day.....Siting around waiting to launch WWIII can be a monotonous job!

    May 9, 2013 at 12:24 pm | Report abuse |
  3. bobcat (in a hat)©

    Lease a Nuke!

    Want power and respect? Want to influence the course of world events? Want to be on CNN every night? Tired of hum-drum conventional warfare and messy bio-chemical weapons? Want to watch the citizens of your favorite arcology squirm and sweat in constant nagging fear of instant and unexpected anhilation?

    Lease a nuclear device!

    In the wake of the former Soviet Union's demise, there are literally thousand of high-quality nuclear weapons complete with intercontinental delivery systems going unused.

    Though these systems are indeed powerful and destructive weapons of war, they are most effective when used in a more passive role. The US and USSR have proven in years of research and actual testing that nuclear devices are most effective when merely targeting an enemy. Actual detonation is not normally necessary to acheive tremendous effect in the designated target's military, political, economic and social well being.

    Imagine the boost in national pride and morale when you personally announce on state radio and television that you have put long-time enemies under threat of nuclear destruction. They will praise your name as a powerful and inspired leader even without the secret police's encouragement.

    Why lease?

    By leasing, you not only save money developing your own nuclear technology program, you save a lot of unnecessary headaches too.

    Nuclear weapons development is expensive and time consuming, not to mention easily detectable. It could take you years to aquire and build the necessary industry to manufacture weapons-grade material. Even after that, you still have to design, build and test your first device before anyone takes you seriously.

    Purchasing existing nuclear hardware is also expensive and risky. Most governments are on the lookout for such activity. Many dealers are crooked. Do you really want to take a chance getting ripped off by shady weapons dealers?

    Even if you succeed purchasing through the black market, you stand the risk of getting on the wrong side of international opinion. You could lose existing conventional arms contracts, face economic sanctions or even military action.

    With a lease you avoid a lot of other problems too. Since the weapons are not on your property, you avoid becoming a target yourself. You can forget about the high cost of security, environmental pollution concerns and even subversion by renegade generals in your own army.

    The advantages of leasing are tremendous. You just sign, point, and go! When you are through leasing, just turn in the button and walk away. You can even change your target at any time for a small fee. (Handy for preventing those nasty coup d' etats.) You can announce your target or keep it secret. Each targeted device contract comes with a certificate of authenticity and sufficient proof actual delivery capability.

    The best part is, you don't pay for the whole weapon, unless you actually fire it! This alone presents a HUGE cost savings over the alternatives.

    Imagine the power and prestige you will feel when you get your very own button. You can do things you never thought possible, like pounding your shoe on the UN podium. Hey, and nothing says sexy like a nuclear trigger.

    Hurry, opportunities are limited! Contact Raydeax corpoaration for more details on how you too can become an instant nuclear world power.

    Dr. Nuketopia,

    Technology Director of the World-Wide Monetary Conspiracy

    (Opinions strictly reflect the party line)

    May 9, 2013 at 3:01 pm | Report abuse |
  4. bobcat (in a hat)©

    It's Friday night and President Bill is working late in the White House.

    Suddenly the big, red telephone on his desk rings.

    [President Bill]
    Hello! Hello!

    [Voice on the line]
    President Bill! We have a report that Boris Yeltsin just ordered the launch of all Russian missiles in a full-scale nuclear attack against the United States!

    [President Bill]
    Oh no!!!
    He said he wouldn't do that!
    That dirty, rotten jerk!

    Bill slams the phone down. He goes the receiver back in the red telephone's cradle.

    President Bill grabs the briefcase next to his desk, whirls the combination locks, flings open the lid, and jabs in a series of top-secret access codes. A voice comes over the briefcase speaker.

    [Voice on the line]
    Mr. President, is this a drill?

    [President Bill]
    Listen to me.
    We're being attacked by the Russians.
    Launch a full-scale response immediately.

    [Voice on the line]
    Are you sure, sir?

    [President Bill]
    Fire the missiles!!!
    Fire the missiles now!!!

    [Voice on the line]
    OK Sir, we're launching them this minute.

    [President Bill]
    Thank you, son!

    The speaker goes silent and President Bill collapses in his chair. Suddenly, an aid flings open the door and bursts into the room.

    Hey Bill! Neat joke, huh?
    Sounded real, didn't it?
    Attacked by the Russians! What a gag!
    Hey, you want something from the kitchen, Bill?
    How about a pizza or something?
    Say Bill, are you OK? You look kind of pale.
    You OK Bill?

    May 9, 2013 at 3:48 pm | Report abuse |
  5. BOMBO

    This blog used to be so much fun.

    May 9, 2013 at 6:21 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Rascal Rabble

    i feel ifyah unnerstand how t'set a clock and adjust the cooking power of a microwave oven to scramble eggs intensive training isn't necessary....

    May 9, 2013 at 10:12 pm | Report abuse |
  7. chrissy

    Lol @ Rascal, or a pressure cooker eh? Just funnin with ya. But on a serious note thats a huge responsability and if they dont realise the seriousness of it then they arent fit to do the job!

    May 10, 2013 at 1:12 am | Report abuse |
  8. Nuclear Ned

    Nukes are just big bombs with radioactive fallout because they are not efficiently designed. Most of it is wasted.
    Small guided munitions can pinpoint your problem and take it out more efficiently than the whole nuclear arsnal.
    But then we need some large craters in certain areas, so I wouldn't get rid of them altogether.

    May 10, 2013 at 1:59 am | Report abuse |
  9. saywhat

    @Nuclear Ned
    that unfortunately works against us too. The need to rid the planet of these & other weapons of horror has never been greater.

    May 10, 2013 at 1:18 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Jason

    Yes, when they say turn the key; you turn it.

    May 10, 2013 at 6:05 pm | Report abuse |
  11. Rascal Rabble

    (gong) ahhh-see you no no scramble eggs? from scratch in micro...wave??

    ahhhhHAHAHahhhaHaHAahH no qualify to launch nu-clear-ah chopstix with


    May 10, 2013 at 6:59 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Mary

    There won't be a WW 3 guys... With so little in number of countries to invade and occupy I doubt things with get that far.

    May 11, 2013 at 8:21 pm | Report abuse |
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