Currently the CIMSEC web site is migrating to a new server so it is off line, but they have provided something a shorthand critique of how some think the Navy has fallen short, since the collapse of the Soviet Union.
The Coast Guard still has Defense Readiness as one of its eleven missions. We in the Coast Guard are highly dependent on the Navy helping us know what needs doing, but I don’t think we should fail to think for ourselves.
This short five page outline of what the Navy has been doing wrong may be helpful because we have probably been making some of the same mistakes, not just in our preparation to fight a “near peer” major conflict, but in our response to the terror threat, and perhaps in our on-going war with drug smugglers.
I like the fact it specifically mentions LRASM. NSM has a place on platforms with lighter payload capacities, but their is no reason anything larger than corvette isn’t being planned to have an organic asset that can help target a longer range shot from the main platform.
I found that during naval defense expositions that I’ve attended, even if virtual, where one can ask generals and admirals direct questions, often the U.S. Navy and USMC avoid questions regarding the future or about new weapons and tactics.
When asked about the continuation of the 76mm/3-inch gun, up-arming, missiles, new subs, new tanks, Arsenal Ships, new concepts, rockets, new subs and ships, or the future armaments, these questions are often avoided and the admirals and generals focus on Programs of Records.
Is there hubris involved? Yes. Is there overconfidence in the U.S. Navy’s abilities? Yes. Is there a lack of innovation and flexibility? Yes. Does it sound like a recorded speech and Rinse and Repeat? Yes. Is the same attitude being presented each and every Expo and year? Pretty much, yes. This lack of adaptability is what is the problem with the U.S. naval forces. OK, obviously for OPSEC reasons, some questions are ignored, but I do sense that the plan for the U.S. Navy is to keep progressing on what you read online, as if there are no Black Programs, secret weapons, next-generation plans, or DARPA.
Sure, the U.S. Navy and USMC can dispatch and deploy Marines and ships to Hot Spots and influence matters, but when it even comes to plans to replace the USS Bonhomme Richard (LHD-6), or new shells for the Zumwalts, or Hypersonics, or new air defenses, these questions are often avoided of just basically mentioned and discussed. It’s as if the U.S. Navy is hiding how they spend the billions of dollars in annual naval Budget and instead say that they have a Budget in the thousands of dollars instead. It’s kind of clever, actually, in what they take interest in.
The U.S. Navy does admit to program mistakes and failures it made, but I found that it’s true in the mentality that “Top Gun” rules over all, and if you’re peddling a bike on the runway, the Navy avoids you in favor of Top Gun Mach pointy-nose fighters all the way.