Holloway lauds cyberspace decision

Mayor A.J. Holloway said he was pleased with today’s announcement that Keesler Air Force Base in Biloxi would be home of the Air Force’s new Undergraduate Cyberspace Training unit.

The unit, which would host about 615 students and about 60 permanent instructors beginning in 2010, would train airmen on methods to design, attack and defend various communication networks, including telephones, internet, satellite, industrial control systems, integrated air defense and tactical data links.

“This is great news for Keesler and Biloxi,” Holloway said. “This demonstrates the vitality of Keesler Air Force Base. It demonstrates how the men and women of Keesler are critical members of our national defense team, and how they will continue to be on the front lines in the areas of electronics training. And this decision also shows the strong confidence that the Air Force has in this community’s ability to rebuild.”

Holloway and Biloxi civic leader and retired Air Force Gen. Clark Griffith, who was elected to the City Council in June, had traveled to Washington, D.C., and Barksdale Air Force Base in Shreveport, La., in 2008 to tout the advantages of locating a cyberspace component in Biloxi.

“When I appointed to Clark to help with this, I know he would do a good job in making our case and he did,” Holloway said, “but we also owe a debt of thanks to Gov. Haley Barbour for his work on this, as well as Sen. Thad Cochran and our entire delegation in Washington.”