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MOB 2 - Comiso, Italy
Gryphon (GLCM) Main Operating Base 2 (MOB 2): Comiso AB, Sicily, Italy. The 487th Tactical Missile Wing (TMW) was the second GLCM wing, activated a year later than MOB 1 and in a far different environment. Its tactical unit was the 302d Tactical Missile Squadron, activated simultaneously with the wing. This wing was established and activated during World War II as the 487th Bombardment Group, went through a number of redesignations, and was inactivated following the war. In 1982, it was consolidated with the 587th Tactical Missile Group, an inactive former Matador unit, and the 487th Bombardment Group, as the 487th Tactical Missile Wing, which was activated on 1 July 1983 at Comiso. When the USAF arrived at Comiso to begin preparing it for its GLCM mission, the buildings were almost all bombed out shells and the runway had trees growing out of it. A few of the old buildings were refurbished and used by the USAF or the Italian Air Force (IAF), but most were demolished carefully, because of the large amount of unexploded ordnance left from WWII, and a new base was constructed from the ground up. The first permanently assigned U.S. military personnel arrived in April 1983 in the early stages of the construction of the base. There was a small IAF contingent there at that time, along with a U.S. Navy construction office. From 1983 to 1991, Comiso Air Base was the largest NATO base in southern Europe and housed 112 BGM-109G missiles. The 487 TMW and its Italian Air Force host organization jointly accomplished NATO’s GLCM mission at Comiso until the wing was inactivated on 27 May 1991 as a result of the signing of the INF Treaty.
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