MINOT – U.S. Senator Kevin Cramer (R-ND), member of the Senate Armed Services Committee (SASC), and General David Allvin, Acting Chief of Staff of the Air Force, visited Minot Air Force Base (AFB) to meet with airmen and tour several sites on the base. Minot AFB plays a historic and critical role in the defense of our nation, as the only base to house two out of three legs of the strategic triad.
“I am grateful General Allvin came to Minot to see North Dakota’s remarkable capabilities and soaring potential firsthand and hear directly from our military leaders,” said Senator Cramer. “Especially now, we must be steadfast in our deterrence efforts to meet the threats of China, Russia, North Korea, and Iran. General Allvin is on the forefront of preparing our nation for all challenges to our safety, and I look forward to partnering with him to make our nation more secure.”
Senator Cramer and General Allvin began their visit with a briefing on the missions of the 5th Bomb Wing and the 91st Missile Wing. The 5th Bomb Wing operates the B-52H Stratofortress aircraft which provides global strike and combat-support capabilities to geographic commanders. The 91st Missile Wing operates and maintains the Minuteman III missiles which defend the nation with a combat-ready nuclear force.
“Minot represents our most lethal assets and commands the world’s respect,” said Senator Cramer.
Senator Cramer and General Allvin then toured the Weapons Storage Area before proceeding to the UH-1 flight line for transit out to the missile fields. Senator Cramer has advocated for the timely replacement of aging UH-1s with modernized MH-139As and secured military construction funding through the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). Minot AFB uses these helicopters to provide combat air power in defense of the 91st Missile Wing’s airmen and assets in the 8,500 square mile missile complex.
Senator Cramer and General Allvin visited one of the base’s Missile Alert Facilities (MAF), which are responsible for the preservation and protection of the Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missile. The Minuteman III represents a mission essential to the United States’ nuclear deterrence strategy and posture. The 91st Security Forces, responsible for all physical security and response forces for the 91st Missile Wing, provided a static display and explanation how they prepare for the defense of the MAF against a variety of threats. Then, they toured the Launch Control Center and met with the launch crew, which provides around-the-clock alerts, ready at any moment to execute the president’s orders when directed. In the Complex, missiles are dispersed in hardened silos to protect against attacks and are connected to an underground launch control center through a system of hardened cables.
Senator Cramer and General Allvin then participated in a presentation of the 91st Operations Group Missile Complex and a tour of the 91st Security Forces Group building for Defender Culture to better understand our Airmen’s work environment and everyday tasks.
“Our airmen go above and beyond every day, so it’s important for them to work in an environment that helps them complete the mission at hand, without any barriers or distractions,” said Senator Cramer.