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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

376th Bomb Wing

The 376th Bombardment Wing flew B-47 bombers while based at Barksdale Air Force Base, LA from 1953 to 1955. In 1957 the 91st Strategic Reconnaissance Wing at Lockbourne Air Force Base, Ohio was awarded the Air Force Outstanding Unit Award for outstanding operational activities. In September 1958 the 91st Strategic Reconnaissance Wing flying RB-47E's was redesignated the 376th Bombardment Wing (electronics countermeasures), flying EB-47E's. In 1958 the 376th Bombardment Wing received the Strategic Air Command Commander's Accident Prevention Award for outstanding operational activities.

In January 1965 Brigadier General Morgan S. Tyler was assigned as commander of the 4252nd Strategic Wing at Kadena Air Base, Okinawa. As commander, he organized the new wing which was equipped with KC-135s. Under his command the 4252nd Wing was twice the recipient of the Air Force Outstanding Unit Award: one was for the first six months of operation, and the second for the period of 01 July 1965 to 01 March 1966. Brigadier General Alan C. Edmunds assumed command of the 4252nd Strategic Wing with headquarters at Kadena in August 1969. The 4252nd Strategic Wing possibly exercised operational control over the B-52Ds at Kadena from February 1968. The 4252nd Strategic Wing was inactivated 01 April 1970 and replaced by the 376th Strategic Wing.

Following the 7 December 1941 attack on Pearl Harbor, President Franklin D. Roosevelt ordered the Army Air Forces to mount retaliatory raids on the Japanese home islands. A task force, commanded by Colonel Harry E. Halverson and composed of 231 officers and enlisted men and 23 B-24D Liberator bombers, was assembled at Fort Myers, Florida. The unit was given the code name "HALPRO" for Halverson Project. This organization, destined to be the parent unit of the 376th Bombardment Group, departed the United States on 20 May 1942 to begin attacks on Japanese targets from a base located in China. When HALPRO arrived in the Middle East, the unit learned that its' proposed base had been captured by Japanese forces. To make matters worse, the German Afrika Korps under General Erwin Rommel was poised to attack Allied forces in North Africa. HALPRO was quickly diverted from its' original mission to a new one: interdictory raids from airfields in Egypt against shipping and North African ports supporting Axis operations. After the liberation of North Africa late in 1943, the Group moved to San Pancrazio, Italy where it participated in an accelerated campaign against Axis targets in southern Europe and the Balkans. Group sorties extended as far as Vienna, Austria and Regensburg, Germany.

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