Defense: The 15-Year Alert

Three days after the Korean War began, in June 1950, the U.S. hurriedly put a few rickety, World War II fighters at Long Island's Mitchell Air Force Base on 24-hour alert against the threat of an attack by Soviet intercontinental bombers. Both the threat and the alert have proved to be enduring. This week the U.S. Air Defense Command (ADC) rounds out 15 years of continuous, round-the-clock alert status—and it has come a long way from the time when P47 Thunderbolts and F-51 Mustangs were among the hottest items in its inventory....

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