Base Closings

Rumsfeld proposes shutting 33 major military bases

The Associated Press has learned 33 major bases are among the 150 military installations the Pentagon is proposing to close.

It's the first round of base closings in a decade. The Pentagon has proposed eliminating scores of Reserve and National Guard bases from coast to coast. In a news release obtained by the AP, Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld says Cold War arrangements "must give way to the new demands of the war against extremism."

The closures and downsizings would cost 29-thousand civilian and military jobs over six years starting next year. The plan goes to a commission and then needs congressional and White House approval. South Dakota's Ellsworth Air Force Base is among the major proposed closures. Half the nation's B1B bombers are based there.

Freshman Republican Senator John Thune claimed that he could protect the base in his campaign against former Senate Minority Leader Tom Daschle.