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Minuteman Iii

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The missile, which is part of the nation’s nuclear weapons system, was fired shortly after 12:03 a.m. The purpose of the test, according to Air Force Global Strike Command, was to validate and verify the safety, security, effectiveness, and reliability of the weapon system.

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A test launch of an unarmed Minuteman III intercontinental ballistic missile, or ICBM, is scheduled to take place during a window between 12:39 and 6:39 a.m. Thursday, May 9, from Vandenberg Air Force Base. The purpose of the test, according to Air Force Global Strike Command, is to “validate and verify the effectiveness, readiness and accuracy of the weapon system.”

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