WASHINGTON (AP) — First it was bad attitudes among young officers in nuclear missile launch centers. Now it’s alleged bad behavior by two of the nuclear arsenal’s top commanders.

Together the missteps spell trouble for a nuclear force doubted by some for its relevance, defended by others as vital to national security and now compelled to explain how the firing of key commanders this week should not shake public confidence.

The Air Force on Friday fired Maj. Gen. Michael Carey, who was in charge of its nuclear missiles. Two days earlier the Navy sacked Vice Adm. Tim Giardina, the second-in-command at U.S. Strategic Command, which writes the military’s nuclear war plans and would transmit launch orders should the nation ever go to nuclear war.

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