Nuclear Parts Still Missing: Pentagon Report

Sensitive components remain unaccounted for in mess that cost Air Force brass jobs
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 19, 2008 2:24 PM CDT
Air Force Secretary Michael Wynne, left, and Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Michael Moseley, were dismissed by Defense Secretary Robert Gates on June 5.   (AP Photo)
camera-icon View 4 more images

(Newser) – The investigation that resulted in the dismissal of top US Air Force brass two weeks ago also found that hundreds of nuclear-missile parts remain missing, the Financial Times reports. Defense Secretary Robert Gates said the Pentagon needed "to re-establish positive control of these sensitive, classified components" in announcing the firings June 5; the report's conclusions present further embarrassment.

The Pentagon played down the significance of the inventory problems: "Record keeping of components was identified as a weakness, but there is a significant difference between missing items and not having a full, complete paper trail for every component," a spokesman said yesterday after a classified Capitol Hill briefing by the admiral who led the investigation.