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U.S. Air Force Reactivates the 69th Nuclear Strike Bomb Squadron

The U.S. Air Force has reactivated the 69th Bomb Squadron this month. The new unit is the fourth operational B-52H Stratofortress squadron in the Air Force, and the second squadron operating from Minot Air Force Base along with the 23rd Bomb Squadron.

The new squadron was activated to provide each B-52 wing with two active-duty combat-coded squadrons, giving the Air Force "bench depth" to rotate the squadrons across mission-sets, as recommended in the Defense Science Board Report. Maj. Gen. Floyd L. Carpenter, the 8th Air Force commander said that the 69th Bomb Squadron returns to provide deterrence forces and help balance the demands of both the nuclear and conventional missions of the B-52 fleet. To equip the reactivated squadron, 10 B-52 aircraft will relocate from Barksdale AFB to Minot AFB between October and April 2010. The squadron is expected to mirror the other three currently established active B-52 squadrons. As the squadron builds up, many of the resources and functions from the 23rd Bomb Squadron will be shared including training, exercises and deployments.