August 4, 2021

Despite a probe into the Space Command basing decision, Pentagon chief Austin stands by the Air Force

2 min read

According to his spokesperson, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin has released a clarification in support of the United States Air Force‘s handling of the United States Space Command basing decision. Austin’s comment comes after the Defense Department’s inspector general reported on February 19 that an investigation into how the Air Force agreed to transfer United States Space Command’s headquarters from Colorado to Alabama will start.

Investigators would look into whether the Air Force Department followed DoD as well as Air Force rules when selecting a venue. The six candidate locations were ranked using objective and appropriate scoring factors. Cost, as well as other scoring factors, were measured correctly and uniformly across the six selected sites. Rep. Doug Lamborn (R-Colo.) demanded the IG inquiry a month ago, according to a statement released February 19. Lamborn, as well as the rest of Colorado’s congressional delegation, wrote to Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin, demanding that the Biden administration rethink a basing decision that they suspect is politically motivated.

According to legislators, the Air Force was preparing to recommend that the United States Space Command stays at Peterson Air Force Base situated in Colorado Springs after such a months-long assessment of six bases. They say that the Trump admin ordered retired Air Force Secretary Barrett to demand that United States Space Command be transferred to Alabama as a present to the former president’s political allies. Barrett made the announcement on January 13, a week before resigning.

In a statement released on February 22, Pentagon press secretary John Kirby stated, “Secretary Austin has conveyed to Air Force officials that he shares their decision-making process regarding the chosen place of Space Command headquarters.”

Retired Air Force Secretary Barbara Barrett revealed on January 13 that the United States Space Command will be moved from Colorado’s Peterson Air Force Base to the Huntsville, Alabama’s Redstone Arsenal. United States Space Command will continue at the Peterson Air Force Base for the time being. According to the Air Force, the new site’s environmental assessment is expected to take around two years.

Austin “recognizes they would not make a definitive decision until the year 2023,” according to Kirby, and “looks forward to being kept updated as they progress through those discussions.” Rep. Doug Lamborn demanded the inspector general’s inquiry (R-Colo.) Lamborn, as well as the rest of Colorado’s congressional delegation, submitted to Austin, demanding that the Biden administration rethink a basing decision that they suspect is politically motivated.

https://thebrockvilleobserver.ca/

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