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Air Force to look closer at nuke leader candidates

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Air Force’s top general says that future candidates for nuclear command position will be screened more rigorously as a result of the recent firing of the officer in charge of land-based nuclear missiles.

In remarks to reporters, Gen. Mark Welsh, the Air Force chief of staff, says the change is unrelated to the job performance of Maj. Gen. Michael Carey, a 35-year veteran who was relieved of command last month for unspecified personal misbehavior that other officials said was related to alcohol use.

Welsh says the hiring process for nuclear commanders will now include more intensive pre-screening, to include a review of potential personal health problems.

He says Carey told him that he had engaged in “an embarrassing period of behavior.” Welsh did not elaborate.

Associated Press