Air Force chief to visit 188th in Fort Smith

FORT SMITH (AP) - The Air Force's chief of staff is to visit the 188th Fighter Wing in Fort Smith as the base is likely slated for closure under a defense spending bill.

Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Welsh III on Thursday told the state's Senate delegation that he wanted to visit the unit before a final decision is reached on its future.

The Southwest Times Record reports that Arkansas Sens. John Boozman and Mark Pryor had both urged Welsh to have a look at the base before making a closure decision.

The base flies A-10 jets, which are known for their ability to attack enemy tanks.

A date for the visit will be set later.

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