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Architect of Air PowerGeneral Laurence S. Kuter and the Birth of the US Air Force$
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Brian D. Laslie

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780813169989

Published to Kentucky Scholarship Online: January 2018

DOI: 10.5810/kentucky/9780813169989.001.0001

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Commander in Chief, North American Air Defense Command

Commander in Chief, North American Air Defense Command

(p.161) 10 Commander in Chief, North American Air Defense Command
Architect of Air Power

Brian D. Laslie

University Press of Kentucky

As Commander in Chief of the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD). Not only in charge of air defense of the United States and Canada, Kuter also oversaw the development and building of the Cheyenne Mountain Operations Center. Cheyenne Mountain would become synonymous with NORAD, and the United States Air Force. In his capacity as CINC NORAD, Kuter briefed President Kennedy and Vice President Johnson on the importance of continental defense during the Cuban Missile Crisis. He advocated extending the missile warning system to cover approaches by missiles from any direction. In this final position Kuter had not attained the zenith of his air force career, but oversaw a global operation that was unimaginable when he graduated from West Point. As Kuter had matured, so had the United States Air Force.

Keywords:   COLD WAR, Air Defense, NORAD, Cuban Missile Crisis

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