ABILENE, Texas (KTAB/KRBC) – FBI Director Christopher Wray warned Congress on Tuesday of increased ‘terror threats’ inside the U.S. since the start of the Israel and Hamas war. On Wednesday, the 7th Bomb Wing Dyess Air Force Base Commander, Colonel Seth Spanier, spoke to the Kiwanis Club about the base’s protection for the Big Country and the United States as a whole.
“We live in a dangerous world, and a world that’s becoming more dangerous by the day, frankly,” said Spanier.
Although this is not the typical tone of a Kiwanis meeting, the group decided to invite the commander to talk about the current state of the Air Force Base and answer questions from members.
One member asked, “Can you comment on where we’re at with Turkey as far as an ally?”
Spanier responded, “Yeah, it’s a complex relationship. Turkey’s standing in NATO, but what we focus on is our ability as aircrews or as members of the military to properly fight with them as allies, and in that respect, I’d say we’re strong.”
There are growing concerns about potential threats to the United States amidst ongoing conflicts between Israel and Hamas, as well as Ukraine and Russia, and the impact on Dyess AFB right here in Abilene.
“I want everyone to understand that Dyess plays a key role in America’s defense. Dyess and the airmen of Dyess Air Force Base stand ready,” said Spanier.
He stated that with future advancements such as the B-21 Bomber arriving at Dyess, he feels they will be even more prepared for their duties.
“Air Force Global Strike Command Commander General Bucier will routinely say that the B-21 is the most technologically advanced weapon system that has ever been created, and based on my understanding and knowledge, I believe that’s the truth,” Spanier explained.
He reassured that Dyess AFB has a high level of security when asked if this new weapon system could make it a target.
“It is a very secure facility. We already have a very high level of security to protect our 317th Airlift Wing C-130 mission and our 7th Bomb Wing B-1 mission, and that will just continue and even expand in the future with the arrival of the B-21,” Spanier shared.
Despite the ‘dangerous’ world that Spanier mentioned, he wants Abilene residents to rest assured.
“To the community, I would just like to say that we are appreciative of what you do, but also realize that we’ve got your back,” Spanier said.
Spanier mentioned their strong infrastructure – with more than 2,000 facilities and 5,000 acres of land – helps protect the base.