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B-1 bombers line up at Ellsworth Air Force Base.
B-1 bombers line up at Ellsworth Air Force Base.
U.S. Air Force Photo
January 5, 2016

B-1 Bomber Called 'Backbone' Of U.S. Air Fleet

The B-1 bombers housed at Ellsworth Air Force Base are called the "backbone" of the U.S. military's air fleet and a "mainstay" in the ongoing wars in the Middle East, reports the Washington Post

Headlined "The underappreciated workhorse of America’s air wars," the article quotes members of the military who have worked with the B-1, including pilots who call the aircraft "the Bone" and themselves "Bone drivers." Those sources praise the B-1's capabilities, from its endurance to its large payload, while the report notes the B-1 has been underappreciated by prominent critics, including U.S. Sen. John McCain

The B-1 has provided close air support since kicking off the Iraq war in 2003 with the shock and awe campaign in Baghdad that ultimately failed to kill Saddam Hussein to the current fight against the Islamic State in Syria in Iraq, during which the B-1 is credited with driving the terrorist group's fighters out of Kobane, Syria, and Tikrit, Iraq. 

Read more about Ellsworth Aire Force Base on the Black Hills Knowledge Network


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