The Air Force is bringing back seven B–1s that were retired three years ago. But only one of those planes will be assigned to Ellsworth Air Force Base.
The Air Force retired 33 B–1s from its fleet, leaving 60 flying out of Ellsworth and Dyess Air Force Base in Texas.
War successes prompted Congress to bring back a squadron. But the Air Force says it can only pay to upgrade seven bombers.
While Dyess gets the lion’s share, five planes, the Rapid City Chamber of Commerce Ellsworth Task Force believes Ellsworth is still the main combat bomber base. “We have two of the three combat squadrons in the Air Force at Ellsworth,”? said Pat of the task force. “In the world of combat aircraft, it’s more important to be a combat aircraft than to be other categories of aircraft.”?
Six of the seven jets are already in service as back–ups while the rest of the fleet gets new equipment and repairs.
Edwards AFB, Calif., gets the seventh B-1 for testing.