Alabama attorney general wants federal probe of Space Command HQ site, general’s new ranch
al.com August 22, 2023
(Tribune News Service) — Alabama Attorney Gen. Steve Marshall is “demanding” a federal investigation into the Defense Department’s decision to put U.S. Space Command headquarters in Colorado.
Marshall called that a “sudden reversal” of an earlier decision to locate the headquarters on Huntsville’s Redstone Arsenal, the top competing military location for it.
Marshall cited an Al.com report that Space Command Gen. James Dickinson, “a previous advocate for the Redstone Arsenal site in Huntsville, changed his recommendation to President Joe Biden for headquarters to be located to Colorado.
“The change of preference occurred just as General Dickinson in April 2023 purchased a $1.5 million, 20-acre ranch near the Colorado location,” Marshall said, “which was never disclosed to stakeholders in the process.”
“Since taking office, this president has targeted red states for daring to resist his radical progressive agenda. But when it comes to national security, politics must take a backseat,” Marshall said in a news release. “I implore the Inspector General to investigate the oddly timed investment by General Dickinson which coincided with his recommendation against the Air Force’s preferred site in Huntsville.”
Marshall further vowed to continue “to use the unique power of my office to hold President Biden accountable and demand transparency into this politically motivated charade.”
Marshall said the Air Force “identified the Redstone Arsenal as the best site for the headquarters in 2021 and that decision was confirmed by the U.S. Department of Defense’s Inspector General’s Office and the Government Accountability Office.”
Dickinson told Alabama officials in a closed June meeting that Redstone would be the headquarters location, Marshall said, but registered a deed in April for the ranch “near the Colorado location.” Dickinson did not disclose that “personal interest to Alabama officials and it is unknown whether he disclosed his personal interest in Colorado to President Biden or other superiors.”
Dickinson is a native of Estes Park, Colo., and graduate of Colorado State University. He also holds a degree from the Colorado School of mines. He is retiring after a military career that included deployment in Operations Enduring Freedom and Iraqi Freedom. Dickinson was given his fourth star in August 2020.
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