Air Force Research Laboratory commander relieved amid investigation into alleged misconduct

news
Maj. Gen. William T. Cooley (U.S. Air Force photo)

The Air Force on Wednesday relieved Maj. Gen. William T. Cooley, the commander of the Air Force Research Laboratory, citing "a loss of confidence in his ability to lead" with regards to alleged misconduct which is currently under investigation.

General Arnold W. Bunch Jr., commander of Air Force Materiel Command, determined that "new leadership was necessary to ensure good order and discipline and continue" AFRL's high performance, the Air Force said in a statement on Thursday.


"The Air Force takes any misconduct allegation seriously," Bunch said. "I expect our leadership to uphold the highest standards and live up to the Air Force's core values."

Derek Kaufman, a spokesman for Air Force Materiel Command, told Task & Purpose he could not comment on the nature of the alleged misconduct, but explained that the Air Force Office of Special Investigations had taken on the case.

As commander of the Ohio-based AFRL, Cooley headed a $4.8 billion science and technology program with a government work force of about 6,000 people, according to the major general's biography.

Cooley has been in the branch since 1988, when he was commissioned as a second lieutenant. He took the helm of AFRL in May, 2017 and was promoted to major general in July 2018.

Over the past 32 years, Cooley has worked on a range of Air Force scientific projects, from space and missile systems to military satellite communication to semiconductor lasers and space vehicles.

In the meantime, Cooley also deployed to Afghanistan, earned a Bronze Star and Defense Superior Service Medal with oak leaf clusters, and obtained a Ph.D in engineering physics.

Bunch wrote that Brig. Gen. Evan Dertien has been appointed AFRL commander. Cooley has been assigned as Bunch's personal assistant for the time being.

Retired Lt. Gen. Charles "Chuck" Pitman Sr. (DoD photo)

The decorated U.S. Marine Corps pilot who risked his life and military career to help New Orleans police halt the Howard Johnson's hotel sniper attack that shattered the quiet of a Sunday morning and claimed seven lives in 1973 died Feb. 13 following a lengthy battle with cancer, according to his family.

Retired Lt. Gen. Charles "Chuck" Pitman Sr., whose heroics against Mark Essex that day earned him the eternal gratitude of city leaders and first responders, was 84.

Read More
A Syrian commando-in-training applies the safety on his rifle during basic rifle marksmanship training in Syria, July 20, 2019. (U.S. Army/Spc. Alec Dionne)

The U.S. government failed to effectively account for nearly $715.8 million in weapons and equipment allocated to Syrian partners as part of the multinational counter-ISIS fight, according to a new report from the Defense Department inspector general.

Read More

On Feb. 19, 1945, more than 70,000 U.S. Marines conducted an amphibious assault to take the Island of Iwo Jima from fortified Japanese forces. Over the next 36 days nearly 7,000 Marines would be killed during the battle, which is regarded as one of the bloodiest of World War II, as they faced hidden enemy artillery, machine guns, vast bunker systems and underground tunnels. Of the 82 Marines who earned the Medal of Honor during all of World War II, 22 medals were earned for actions on Iwo Jima.

Now, 75 years later, 28 Marines and Sailors who fought on Iwo Jima gathered to remember the battle at the 75th and final commemoration sunset ceremony Feb. 15, 2020, at the Pacific Views Event Center on Camp Pendleton, California.

Read More
REUTERS/Scott Audette/File Photo

Rep. Tulsi Gabbard (D-Hawaii), has long been seen as an apologist for Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad, whom she met during a secret trip to Damascus in January 2017.

Most recently, a video was posted on Twitter shows Gabbard evading a question about whether Assad is a war criminal.

Since Gabbard is the only actively serving member of the military who is running for president — she is a major in the Hawaii Army National Guard — Task & Purpose sought to clarify whether she believes Assad has used chlorine gas and chemical weapons to kill his own people.

Read More
Barrett's bolt-action Multi-Role Adaptive Design (MRAD) system (Courtesy photo)

The Army is almost doubling its purchase of new bolt-action Precision Sniper Rifles as its primary anti-personnel sniper system of choice, according to budget documents.

Read More