In a future bomber force, old and ugly beats new and snazzy

WHITEMAN AIR FORCE BASE, Mo. (AP) — An old warhorse of the skies — the B-52 bomber — isn’t fading away any time soon. In fact, it could still be flying at age 100. As the Air Force plans the future of its bomber aircraft fleet, it’s finding that the Vietnam-era B-52 still has a place. In contrast, the newer, snazzier and far pricier B-2 stealth bomber is to be retired first. One big reason is cost. The Pentagon faces the enormous expense of fielding the next-generation bomber, the B-21 Raider, as it also replaces the other major elements of the U.S. nuclear weapons arsenal.