NATO navies proposal revised

Introduction

Submarine is the modern capital ship – primary ship for control of the sea against enemy navy. Only submarines can establish control of the sea, clearing it of the enemy ships and opening way for surface transport craft to carry ground troops into an area of operations. Carriers are primarly useful for support of amphibious landings, carrying out tasks including defending invasion fleet from airborne attacks, establishing air superiority over the area and providing close air support for the invasion force. Cruisers, destroyers and frigates can be useful for fire support of landing operations, while missile boats and fast attack craft can be useful in shallow coastal waters.

Unfortunately, modern-day US Navy (and many other navies) obsess over aircraft carriers. Since these carriers carry no aircraft capable of carrying out close air support, only conclusion is that they are meant to fight the World War II Japanese Navy in a mirror duel. But against a Cold War Soviet navy, these carriers would last all of two days (as admitted by admiral Hyman Rickover). Situation is not much, if at all, better against modern-day Russian and Chinese navies.

This automatically means that submarines must be capable of establishing control of both open ocean and coastal seas. Nuclear submarines are as unsuitable for the latter as conventional submarines are for the former; thus a navy must contain a mix of both. Limited sustained submerged speed of conventional submarines is not a great disadvantage in shallow coastal waters, or when protecting amphibious landings which means that they will be limited to the certain area. In fact, large size of nuclear submarines makes them unsuitable for coastal waters, and comparably easy to find from the air.

Frigattes, corvettes, missile boats and fast attack craft are also quite useful in peacetime patrol tasks. Most of these do not require anything larger than a missile boat, and are best suited for very small but fast craft.

Current state

Prices

CARRIERS

Cavour – 2,06 billion USD

Charles de Gaulle – 3,7 billion USD

Ford – 9 billion USD

Invincible – 832 million USD

Nimitz – 6,93 billion USD

Queen Elizabeth – 5,52 billion USD

ASSAULT SHIPS

Juan Carlos – 638 million USD

Mistral – 620 million USD

San Giorgio replacement – 481 million USD

Wasp – 750 million USD

CRUISERS

Ticonderoga – 1 billion USD

DESTROYERS

Arleigh Burke – 1,96 billion USD

De Zeven Provincien – 816 million USD

Durand de la Penne – 563 million USD

Horizon – 1,66 billion USD

Iroquis – 744 million USD

Sachsen – 1,06 billion USD

Type 45 – 952 million USD

FRIGATTES

Absalon – 225 million USD

Alvaro de Bazan – 600 million USD

Barbaros – 300 million USD

Brandenburg – 380 million USD

Bergamini – 785 million USD

Fridtjof Nansen – 557 million USD

Floreal – 625 million USD

Freedom – 670 million USD

FREMM – 750 million USD

Georges Leygues – 513 million USD

Halifax – 421 million USD

Hydra – 280 million USD

Independence – 704 million USD

Iver Huitfield – 700 million USD

Karel Doorman – 148 million USD

La Fayette – 600 million USD

Maestrale – 200 million USD

Oliver Hazard Perry / Santa Maria / Gabya – 728 million USD

Type 22 – 450 million USD

Type 23 – 300 million USD

Vasco da Gamma – 300 million USD

Yavuz – 300 million USD

CORVETTES

Ada – 280 million USD

Baptista de Andrade – 85 million USD

Braunschweig – 357 million USD

Minerva – 120 million USD

Pauk – 60 million USD (?)

Tarantul – 65 million USD

Tetal I – 108 million USD

Tetal II – 144 million USD

FAST ATTACK CRAFT

CB90 – 6,5 million USD

Gepard – 60 million USD

Hamina – 118 million USD

Helsinki – 50 million USD

Kralj – 66 million USD

Orkan –

Roussen – 125 million USD

Skjold – 150 million USD

SUBMARINES

Agosta – 500 million USD

Astute – 1,3 billion USD

Gotland – 365 million USD

Kilo – 300 million USD

Los Angeles – 1,66 billion USD

Ohio – 3 billion USD

Seawolf – 3,45 billion USD

Trafalgar – 2,05 billion USD

Triomphant – 6,24 billion USD

Type 209 – 370 million USD

Type 209PN – 450 million USD

Type 212 – 500 million USD

Type 214 – 600 million USD

Ula – 206 million USD

Vanguard – 2,4 billion USD

Victoria – 347 million USD

Virginia – 2,1 billion USD

Walrus – 110 million USD

Navies

Belgium

2 Karel Doorman class frigates – 296 million USD

Bulgaria

1 Koni class frigates

2 Pauk class corvettes – 120 million USD

Canada

12 Halifax class frigates – 5,05 billion USD

3 Iruqois class destroyers

4 Victoria class submarines (K) – 1,39 billion USD

Croatia

2 Kralj class missile boats – 132 million USD

2 Helsinki class missile boats – 100 million USD

1 Končar class missile boat

Denmark

3 Iver Huitfeld class frigates – 2,1 billion USD

2 Absalom class support ships – 450 million USD

4 Thetis class frigates – 320 million USD

Estonia

N/A

France

1 Charles de Gaulle class aircraft carrier – 3,7 billion USD

3 Mistral class amphibious assault ships – 1,86 billion USD

2 Horizon class destroyers – 3,32 billion USD

2 Cassard class destroyers

2 Aquitaine class frigates – 1,5 billion USD

5 Georges Leygues class frigates – 2,57 billion USD

5 La Fayette class frigates – 3 billion USD

6 Floreal class frigates – 3,75 billion USD

4 Triomphant class submarines (BN) – 24,96 billion USD

6 Rubis class submarines (N) –

Germany

3 Sachsen class destroyers – 3,18 billion USD

4 Brandenburg class frigates – 1,52 billion USD

4 Bremen class frigates –

5 Braunschweig class corvettes – 1,79 billion USD

8 Gepard class fast attack craft – 480 million USD

4 Type 212 submarines (K) – 2 billion USD

Greece

4 Hydra (MEKO-200HN) class frigates – 1,12 billion USD

10 Elli (Korteaner) class frigates

7 Roussen class fast attack boats – 875 million USD

4 La Combatante III class fast attack boats

5 La Combatante IIIb class fast attack boats

3 La Combatante IIa class fast attack boats

8 Osprey 55 class gunboats

2 Asheville class gunboats

7 Type 209 submarines (K) – 2,59 billion USD

4 Type 214 submarines (K) – 2,4 billion USD

Iceland

N/A

Italy

1 Cavour class aircraft carrier – 2,06 billion USD

1 Guiseppe Garibaldi class aircraft carrier

2 Orizzonte class destroyers

2 Durand de la Penne class destroyers – 1,13 billion USD

3 Bergamini class frigates – 2,36 billion USD

8 Maestrale class frigates – 1,6 billion USD

3 Soldati class frigates

6 Minerva class corvettes – 720 million USD

2 Type 212A submarines (K) – 1 billion USD

4 Sauro class submarines (K)

Latvia

N/A

Lithuania

N/A

Netherlands

4 De Zeven Provincien class destroyers – 3,26 billion USD

2 Karel Doorman class frigates – 296 million USD

2 Walrus class submarines (K) – 220 million USD

2 Dolphin class submarines (K)

Norway

5 Fridtjof Nansen class frigates – 2,79 billion USD

6 Ula class submarines (K) – 1,24 billion USD

6 Skjold class corvettes – 900 million USD

Poland

2 Oliver Hazard Perry class frigates – 1,46 billion USD

1 Kaszub class corvette

3 Orkan class fast attack craft

1 Kilo class submarine (K) – 300 million USD

4 Kobben class submarines (K)

Portugal

2 Karel Doorman class frigates – 296 million USD

3 Vasco da Gamma class frigates – 900 million USD

3 Baptista de Andrade class corvettes – 255 million USD

2 Joao Coutinho class corvettes

2 Tridente class submarines (K) – 1,2 billion USD

Romania

2 Type 22 frigates – 900 million USD

1 Marasesti type frigate

2 Tetal I class corvettes – 216 million USD

2 Tetal II class corvettes – 288 million USD

3 Tarantul class corvettes – 195 million USD

3 Epitrop class missile boats

Slovakia

N/A

Slovenia

N/A

Spain

1 Juan Carlos class amphibious assault ship – 638 million USD

5 Alvaro de Bazan class frigates – 3 billion USD

6 Santa Maria class frigates – 4,37 billion USD

3 Agosta class submarines (K) – 1,5 billion USD

Turkey

8 Gabya class frigates – 5,82 billion USD

4 Barbaros class frigates – 1,2 billion USD

4 Yavuz class frigates – 1,2 billion USD

2 Ada class corvettes – 560 million USD

6 Burak class corvettes

14 Type 209 submarines – 5,18 billion USD

United Kingdom

1 Ocean class amphibious assault ship

6 Type 45 destroyers – 5,71 billion USD

13 Type 23 frigates – 3,9 billion USD

2 Astute class submarines (N) – 2,6 billion USD

4 Trafalgar class submarines (N) – 8,2 billion USD

4 Vanguard class submarines (BN) – 9,6 billion USD

+2 Queen Elizabeth class carriers – 11,04 billion USD

United States

10 Nimitz class aircraft carriers – 69,3 billion USD

8 Wasp class amphibious assault ships – 6 billion USD

1 Tarawa class amphibious assault ship –

22 Ticonderoga class cruisers – 22 billion USD

61 Arleigh Burke class destroyer – 119,56 billion USD

22 Oliver Hazard Perry class frigates – 16,02 billion USD

1 Independence class litoral combat ships (frigates) – 0,704 billion USD

2 Freedom class littoral combat ships (frigates) – 0,67 billion USD

42 Los Angeles class submarines (N) – 69,72 billion USD

3 Seawolf class submarines (N) – 10,35 billion USD

8 Virginia class submarines (N) – 16,8 billion USD

18 Ohio class submarines (BN) – 54 billion USD

Total: 475 ships

13 aircraft carriers

14 amphibious assault ships

22 cruisers

82 destroyers

131 frigates

40 corvettes

31 fast attack boats

10 gunboats

132 submarines (26 ballistic missile (BN), 65 nuclear attack (N), 41 conventional (K))

Ships to be used

Aircraft carrier – 950 million USD (primary blue water ship)

FREMM multirole frigatte – 750 million USD (general purpose (GP), land attack (AVT), anti-submarine (ASW) variants)

Braunschweig class corvette – 357 million USD

Hamina class missile boat – 101 million USD (primary green water ship)

CB90 fast attack craft – 6,5 million USD (primary brown water ship)

Gotland class AIP submarine – 365 million USD (primary green water submarine)

Astute class nuclear attack submarine – 1,3 billion USD (primary blue water submarine)

Ohio class ballistic missile submarine – 3 billion USD

A batch will be 4 frigates (2 general purpose, 1 land attack, 1 anti-submarine), 8 corvettes, 12 missile boats, 24 fast attack craft, 2 ballistic missile submarines, 8 nuclear attack submarines, 20 AIP submarines, for a total of 30,924 billion USD. For smaller navies, batch will exclude nuclear submarines, giving a total cost of 14,524 billion USD. Carriers will be accounted for separately. Mine hunters, logistics and auxilliary vessels as well as support boats will not be counted. If batch has less than 4 frigates, all will be general-purpose)

Proposals

Belgium– 296 million USD

2 missile boats

14 fast attack craft

Bulgaria – 121 million USD

1 missile boat

3 fast attack craft

Canada – 6,45 billion USD

2 frigates (GP)

4 corvettes

6 missile boats

8 AIP submarines

Croatia – 228 million USD

2 missile boats

4 fast attack craft

Denmark – 2,87 billion USD

2 frigates (GP)

6 missile boats

2 AIP submarines

5 fast attack craft

Estonia

N/A

France – 44,66 billion USD

7 aircraft carriers

6 frigates (2 GP, 2 LA, 2 AS)

10 corvettes

16 missile boats

30 fast attack craft

2 ballistic missile submarines

10 nuclear attack submarines

25 AIP submarines

Germany– 8,96 billion USD

2 frigates (GP)

6 corvettes

8 missile boats

20 fast attack craft

12 AIP submarines

Greece – 6,99 billion USD

2 frigates (GP)

4 corvettes

6 missile boats

12 fast attack craft

8 AIP submarines

Iceland

N/A

Italy – 8,94 billion USD

1 aircraft carrier

2 frigates (GP)

4 corvettes

6 missile boats

12 fast attack craft

12 AIP submarines

Latvia

N/A

Lithuania

N/A

Netherlands – 3,77 billion USD

1 frigate (GP)

2 corvettes

4 missile boats

12 fast attack craft

5 AIP submarines

Norway – 4,9 billion USD

1 frigate (GP)

2 corvettes

4 missile boats

20 fast attack craft

8 AIP submarines

Poland – 2 billion USD

2 corvettes

5 missile boats

8 fast attack craft

2 AIP submarines

Portugal – 2,62 billion USD

2 corvettes

4 missile boats

6 fast attack craft

4 AIP submarines

Romania – 1,6 billion USD

1 corvette

4 missile boats

16 fast attack craft

2 AIP submarines

Slovakia

N/A

Slovenia

N/A

Spain – 9,51 billion USD

1 aircraft carrier

2 frigates (GP)

5 corvettes

8 missile boats

14 fast attack craft

12 AIP submarines

Turkey – 13,96 billion USD

4 frigates (2 GP, 1 LA, 1 AS)

8 corvettes

14 missile boats

18 fast attack craft

18 AIP submarines

United Kingdom – 41,05 billion USD

7 aircraft carriers

4 frigates (2 GP, 1 LA, 1 AS)

10 corvettes

15 missile boats

34 fast attack craft

2 ballistic missile submarines

9 nuclear attack submarines

23 AIP submarines

United States – 385,12 billion USD (332,87 billion USD ostalo – 10,76 batches)

55 aircraft carriers – 52,25 billion USD

44 frigates (22 GP, 11 LA, 11 AS) – 33 billion USD

86 corvettes

130 missile boats

258 fast attack craft

22 ballistic missile submarines

86 nuclear attack submarines

215 AIP submarines

Total: 1.497 ships

71 aircraft carriers

70 frigates (40 general purpose, 15 land attack, 15 anti submarine)

146 corvettes

237 missile boats

486 fast attack boats

487 submarines (26 ballistic missile, 105 nuclear attack, 356 conventional)

For comparision, Russia has 1 aircraft carrier, 1 heavy missile cruiser, 4 cruisers, 13 destroyers, 13 cruise missile submarines, 16 nuclear attack submarines, 18 conventional attack submarines, 4 frigates and 77 corvettes. China has 1 aircraft carrier, 27 destroyers, 40 frigates, 17 corvettes, 11 missile boats/gunships, 2 ballistic missile submarines, 4 nuclear attack submarines, 4 conventional submarines. As it can be seen, Russia has a relatively balanced fleet close to the NATO proposal, while both Chinese navy and current NATO navies tend to be too heavy on surface ships and too light on submarines.

Conclusion

This plan has several advantages over the current state:

1) Number of ships is greatly increased (from 475 to 1.497).

2) Capability to establish sea superiority and supremacy against modern navies is also greatly increased due to increased number of nuclear attack and conventional submarines (from 65 to 105 and from 41 to 356)

3) Ability to control coastal and riverine waters is greatly increased.

4) Navy is now capable of providing close air support to ground troops in addition to artillery fire support (a total of 852 CAS aircraft can be carried on carriers)

5) Carrier-equipped navies’ ability to provide air cover is increased

6) Logistics are simplified (no nuclear powered ships except some submarines; a total of 92 ship types currently in use are replaced by 8 ship types).

Some or all of ballistic missile submarines could be converted to cruise missile submarines, and Astute class can also launch cruise missiles from its torpedo tubes.

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80 thoughts on “NATO navies proposal revised

  1. Not too sure whether the Astute class is the right choice.

    It’s problem plagued.

    – Slower than expected (design flaws apparently)

    – Poor construction led to leaks
    – Already corroding

    http://www.theguardian.com/uk/2012/nov/15/astute-hunter-killer-submarines-doomed
    http://www.theguardian.com/uk/2012/nov/15/hms-astute-submarine-slow-leaky-rusty

    All new classes have issues, but these seem more severe than normal. Some of these are more than faulty construction, it looks like design flaws.

  2. I think you know my feelings. The Submarine is not capable of controling the sea.

    It is capable of many other things including denial of sea lanes and of blockading a port but control of the Sea is a step above that and requires first the destruction of the opponents Navy, survival of your own and surface combatants.

    The problem with using Submarines against a power that has aircrafts including one like the USA or Russia that operates heavy anti-submarine helicopters is that the nuclear subs can be found and the conventional ones once they fire a shot can’t run away.

    Plus submarines in shallow waters are just as susceptible to mines as surface ships are.

    I am afraid that a complex mix of ships is require for Sea Control.

    • It remains to be seen how good aircraft are at detecting modern submarines.
      Modern submarines both AIP and nuclear are completely different beasts from the WWII boats that aircraft were capable of detecting. For starters modern submarines can dive a kilometer under the sea and stay there for weeks, they can also attack from hundreds of kilometers away using anti-ship missiles.
      The aircraft as protection for surface ships works only when submarines are forced to come within one ore two kilometers to attack and can’t dive more the 100 meters (like they did in WWII). But when a wolf-pack can attack from hundreds of kilometers away while a second one sneaks in under 2 or 3 thermoclines as invisible for sonar as if it was on Europa (Jupiters satellite) and attacks while the escort is distracted by the missile attack, I don’t know how long that carrier is going to survive, and I also don’t see how an aircraft can detect submarines in this conditions: extreme distance (hundreds of kilometers) and extreme depth (bellow 300 meters light doesn’t penetrate, sound bounces of the thermoclines and modern submarines are not detectable by MAD detectors). I agree with Picard, in case of a war like WWII the large aircraft carrier will go the way of the battleship brought down by the submarine/cruise missile combo, just like the battleship was brought down by the carrier/aircraft combo.

      • Submarines have repeatedly managed in exercises to get into torpedo firing range of aircraft carriers. From current military exercises, my “gut feeling” is the opposite of HGR’s.

        Probably the only surface ships that will be able to detect idle submarines (that can run on battery or in the case of nuclear submarines at low speed, passive circulation) are going to be the ones that are moving very slowly themselves or the ones with very powerful active sensors that give themselves away (sensors that are lowered by the ship several hundred metres down and give a powerful “sonic blast”).

        The other issue is that modern torpedoes are a lot more dangerous than WWII-era ones. They are designed to go underneath the ship and detonate, the equal of breaking the spine of a ship. In the case of the carrier, large size may be an advantage in this regard (the larger you are the less you’ll be “lifted”, but it is probably not worth building large carriers anyways because the fleet will be compromised in terms of size.

        As far as mines – there are several types:
        – The primitive contact mines are the most cost-effective. Simple, cheap, and still in widespread use. Drift mines are also available.

        – Among influence mines, the first are the kind sensitive to noise. Submarines will be less vulnerable to this type because they emit low noise (at least at slower speeds that would be used in shallow waters where mines are most likely).

        – Magnetic mines on the other hand, may make submarines more vulnerable. They have a magnetometer on board and detonate when a metal object is nearby. Of course, it depends on the mine. Mines close to the surface will be more vulnerable to ships and mines below – submarines. One potential solution to solve this (but very expensive) is to de-gauss the hull of the vessel. (http://fas.org/man/dod-101/sys/ship/weaps/degaussing.htm)

        Another is to make the ship out of titanium. That increases strength to mass (due to titanium) so the submarine can dive deeper and is non-magnetic, but it’s also very expensive. The Russians built an entire industry around this and are still the leaders of titanium today.

        – It’s possible to make mines that have many types of sensors, but they get progressively more expensive so you cannot have as many mines.

        At the moment, China has the largest mine arsenal in the world. That should be of some concern to the US, but the amount of resources allocated suggests that it is not.

      • Andrei and Chris… a lot of fiction is repeated and soon it is assumed to be a fact. The current crop of Coastal Submarines from all manufactures can only cruise very slowly or else loose their battery charge almost right away. These ships cannot chase a carrier.

        And ships like the LCS can virtually out-run a torpedo.

        So those are good for ambushes in coastal areas, ports and shipping lanes. That is when most of these “feats” of surfacing near a carrier or sinking one in an exercise have occurred.

        You need power of Nuclear propulsion to keep up with Carriers and their escorts. Period.

        In coastal areas some of the prevailing ships used there not only can out-run the torpedoes but have such shallow draught that they are immune to them in many waters.

        And while the coastal sub can fire a missile if it does so to a moving target it needs something else to locate such target. A helicopter would be handy for that.

        So reality is that Subs are deadly in certain circumstances and not so in others.

        Now, locating a sub in coastal waters using passive acoustics (preferred) is hard. But it can be located with active acoustics. Passive means as well as other such as magnetic and thermal are also coming along as well as the deployment of those resources from robotic vessels.

        • “These ships cannot chase a carrier.”

          And carrier cannot stay at full speed nor maneuver well in coastal waters, so that is irrelevant in many scenarios.

          “So those are good for ambushes in coastal areas, ports and shipping lanes.”

          And what do you think coastal submarines are made for?

          “You need power of Nuclear propulsion to keep up with Carriers and their escorts. Period.”

          True, but that does not translate into “nuclear submarine is inherently superior”. It is not, it simply operates differently from AIP submarines. And carriers cannot stay at their maximum speed forever, and in many cases will be limited in where they can go.

          “but have such shallow draught that they are immune to them in many waters.”

          And can be taken out by their counterparts.

          “But it can be located with active acoustics.”

          It can, but active sonar allows submarine to target a ship before it is detected itself, and small size combined with large amount of clutter makes even active sonar very limited in coastal waters.

          “Passive means as well as other such as magnetic and thermal are also coming along as well as the deployment of those resources from robotic vessels.”

          And larger sub is still more likely to get detected.

        • Yes to all except the carriers in coastal waters. Carriers will not be there. They will operate in open ocean with plenty of space.

          But amphibs might end up in coastal waters and that is one of the several big worries that is slowing down procurement in that sector… how will they deal with those subs, patrol and missile boats, mines, coastal batteries, etc.

          In general coastal waters are inherently difficult. The equivalent of urban warfare at sea. Slow, grinding and unglamorous fighting and very difficult to accept psychologically for leaderships’ of Navies that are enshrined in traditions like Trafalgar or the USA WW2 Pacific campaign. They resist it on instinct.

          So it is more a matter of winning minds to make that sort of warfare acceptable

        • “Yes to all except the carriers in coastal waters. Carriers will not be there. They will operate in open ocean with plenty of space.”

          Depends on what is required of them and on combat radius of aircraft carried.

    • Submarines are far harder to find and once found, to sink, than surface ships. You can’t have control of the sea without submarines. Even aircraft are not really capable of finding modern DE and AIP submarines in littoral waters; and while they can find nuclear submarines easily enough, these operate in the open sea environment which means that finding them is like finding a dozen needles in a quite large haystack.

      And I have provided a complex mix of ships.

      • Supporting my points earlier, the thing is, most air forces do not load their aircraft carriers with aircraft like the FLX. They typically load their aircraft with aircraft with fuel fractions of 0.31 – or less.

        @HGR
        You are right that diesel submarines cannot chase a carrier in blue waters. But that’s not really a problem because the carrier will come to them. They have to in order to get into position to launch their low fuel fraction aircraft.

        The other issue is that nuclear submarines have been able in the past to “sink” carriers in exercises. That would imply that enemy nuclear submarines too would be a threat.

        Finally, going active with sonar is not entirely a solution, because it will reveal the location of your ships. The other issue is that like active radar, the range that active sonar can detect versus be detected favors passive sensors.

        • “You are right that diesel submarines cannot chase a carrier in blue waters. But that’s not really a problem because the carrier will come to them. They have to in order to get into position to launch their low fuel fraction aircraft.” – Have you checked the range of the F-35C? And they are steaming at 30 plus knots. Not that risky to the carrier unless the carrier is in a shipping lane or entering a port OR to the amphibs if they are close to shore doing a landing like it was in San Carlos / Falklands.

          The Nuclear sub can stalk another sub as well as a carrier group. Yes, they are dangerous.

      • @HGR
        The F-35C hypothetically has ~1100km of radius, although I believe that figure may be empty. In practice it will be lower because if it needs to bomb, it will have to carry bombs. If it needs to dogfight enemy fighters, then it will need to expend a lot of fuel to do that. Otherwise, it will have to turn and run on sight of an enemy fighter aircraft owing to not enough fuel. Either that or you’ll have to have refuelling tankers on station on the carrier, which further limits the number of combat aircraft you can carry.

        That’s a problem because first, the F-35C will not have supercruise. Second, it’s not a very maneuverable fighter. The B variant is even worse in this regard owing to its VTOL.

        The carrier can sustain 30 knots? That’s not fast enough to outrun a torpedo. Only the Soviet Alfa class submarines, a few hydrofoils, and a few other craft are. In a way, a diesel submarine is like a mobile mine more so than anything else, only larger and with more advanced capabilities.

        That’s the huge weak point – the battle between ASW vs submarine right now seems to favor the submarine. It severely limits what you can do with a carrier against an enemy that can fight back. Plus if you get too close to land, there’s the risk of land based weapons systems as well. Compounding the problem even more, the US has insisted on building a few supercarriers versus many smaller sized carriers, so if you lose a carrier, you lose a higher proportion of the fleet.

        The are other things to remember:
        – Depending on the location, continental shelves extend for hundreds of km

        – Diesel submarines are a fraction of the cost of nuclear submarines – you could simply saturate the enemy with numerical superiority

        – Real mines could be a threat to any enemy force

        So you’ve got 2 options:
        1. Keep the carriers further away from shore. That limits the type of missions that your aircraft on board can do.

        2. Risk it all and send the aircraft carrier closer to shore. That means there’s the greater risk of losing a carrier.

        • Chris, I think that if you research the range of the F-35 internally loaded with fuel it will surprise you. And internal load of fuel means you do not have to account for the drag or loss of maneuverability that other aircrafts suffer because they carry external stores. It is as maneuverable as an F-16. That was what was asked for… a bomber that could fight if necessary. This is no news since I learned much of it while subscribed to this page just like yourself.

          The one that can out-run the torpedoes is the LCS. The carriers are just impossible to track down by a Diesel / Electric sub. It has to be a Nuclear sub.

          And continental shelves are sometimes vast but when it comes to underwater mines the ports and shipping lanes are what matter and the Carrier can stay away from those.

          Do not get me wrong… geography matters. A couple of subs of any kind in the Straits of Malacca would force a huge detour of merchant men increasing cost and if you need to maintain the same cargo volume then you will need more shipping tonnage. The USA would also be vulnerable to subs in say around the Panama Canal or say in any of the major ports such as Okinawa. But you will have to account for that in your war plans.

      • “Chris, I think that if you research the range of the F-35 internally loaded with fuel it will surprise you. And internal load of fuel means you do not have to account for the drag or loss of maneuverability that other aircrafts suffer because they carry external stores. It is as maneuverable as an F-16. That was what was asked for… a bomber that could fight if necessary. This is no news since I learned much of it while subscribed to this page just like yourself.”

        I have. 1100 km is accurate.

        An internal bay is not an advantage the way you say it is. It’s a huge drawback. An aircraft without an internal bay will have a lower empty mass. The mass of the bombs and missiles is unchanged. It will mean a larger and therefore more draggy fuselage.

        Compounding the problem, a plane without an internal bay will fly “clean” after it’s fired its weapons. An aircraft with an internal bay will still have that large fuselage even after releasing its weapons.

        “The one that can out-run the torpedoes is the LCS. The carriers are just impossible to track down by a Diesel / Electric sub. It has to be a Nuclear sub.”

        Carriers can easily be tracked by a diesel sub. The noise that they make is huge.

        You keep ignoring my point. They have to go within a few hundred kilometers of the shoreline in order to sustain operations or their aircraft will be very fuel constrained.

        “Do not get me wrong… geography matters. A couple of subs of any kind in the Straits of Malacca would force a huge detour of merchant men increasing cost and if you need to maintain the same cargo volume then you will need more shipping tonnage. The USA would also be vulnerable to subs in say around the Panama Canal or say in any of the major ports such as Okinawa. But you will have to account for that in your war plans.”

        The only war plans that would involve than inevitably mean war with China, probably over Taiwan.

        Blockading the Straits of Malacca would be a very smart thing to do – for the US. The Chinese know this, and I presume they would have thought up of ideas for addressing this. China is unlikely to be in a position to wage war for the next few years, but if it’s economy becomes a lot larger than the US, it will be the wealthier nation.

        As far as Okinawa, it’s likely that in the opening hours of the war, China would launch a massive attack on Okinawa, possibly Guam as well. The main airbase and the surrounding ports are likely to be unusable. It’s a fixed target – thus quite vulnerable. Guam may be better protected owing to its distance, but I would not be surprised if in the future, China has plans for that too.

        Remember, the Chinese economy is still growing rapidly. Slower than it was, but still growing. Most economists think that within 10-15 years, probably less, it will be larger than America’s economy. Some say that after adjusting for PPP it already is.

        • “I have. 1100 km is accurate. ”

          1.082 km F-35A, 868 km F-35B, 1.139 km F-35C, according to what I’ve written down.

          “An internal bay is not an advantage the way you say it is.”

          It is an advantage for bombers. For fighters, not so much.

      • Submarines don’t hunt by chasing down their prey. They are the patient hunter that wait’s for their prey do come to him. Ever since WWII submarine captains have been trained to attack military ships head on, that way they use the speed of their prey against it and can evade in the clutter of the sinking ship. A submarine captain learns to observe it’s target, learn it’s habits and anticipate it’s course. And when it decides to attack it’s military target it waits in a position in which the target comes directly at them. The carrier strike group might cruise at 30 knots but if it dose so when a spread of torpedoes comes at them head on at 60 knots then they are not going to be able to evade.
        Also the carrier might be nuclear powered and capable of cruising at 30+ knots, but it’s escort is not. An Arleigh Burke can maintain 30+ knots for a few hours at most before needing to refuel. If the mere presence of the submarine makes the carrier strike group maintain 30+ knots for days on end, then the submarine has managed to neutralize the carrier because it will have to leave the war-zone every few hours for it’s escorts to refuel, and thus will not have the time to put launch any meaningful number of sorties.

      • In regard to suitability of submarine to establish see supremacy, quoting from a post on this thread http://forum.juhlin.com/showthread.php?t=4079 :

        “In 2006 the Chinese Navy Song Class diesel-electric submarine famously reached within striking distance of the USS Kitty Hawk undetected. However in naval exercises a total of seven US Navy aircraft carriers have reportedly been sunk by non-nuclear submarines.

        1981: USS Eisenhower was sunk in NATO exercises in the Atlantic Ocean by Royal Canadian Navy Porpoise Class diesel-electric submarine built in Britain in the 1960’s, and wasn’t even detected by US Navy ASW assets.

        1981: During the same exercise the USS Forrestal was also sunk by an unidentified diesel-electric submarine, probably a British Royal Navy submarine.

        1989: USS America sunk in the Atlantic Ocean by Dutch Navy Zwaardvis Class diesel-electric submarine.

        1996: USS Independence sunk by the Chilean Navy German built Type-209 Class diesel-electric class submarine in the Pacific Ocean.

        1999: USS Theodore Roosevelt sunk by the Dutch Navy Walrus Class diesel-electric submarine in the Atlantic Ocean.

        2003: Unidentified US Navy aircraft carrier sunk by two Royal Australian Navy Collins Class diesel-electric submarines in the Pacific Ocean.

        2005: USS Ronald Reagan sank by Swedish Navy Gotland Class AIP submarine in the Pacific Ocean.

        Many other US Navy ships have also been sunk in exercises by non-nuclear submarines. In 1999 the Dutch submarine that sank the USS Theodore Roosevelt also sank the exercise command ship USS Mount Whitney, a cruiser, several destroyers and the Los Angeles Class nuclear attack submarine USS Boise. In 2000 a Royal Australian Navy Collins Class diesel-electric submarine almost sank the USS Abraham Lincoln, and sank two US Navy nuclear attack submarines in the Pacific Ocean. In 2001 another Australian Collins Class HMAS Waller sank two US Navy assault ships in the Pacific, and during the same exercise a Chilean Navy submarine sank the Los Angeles Class nuclear attack submarine USS Montpelier twice. In 2002 another Australian Collins Class HMAS Sheehan hunted down and sank the Los Angeles Class USS Olympia, while in 2003 two Australian Collins Class sank two US Navy nuclear attack submarines and an unidentified aircraft carrier.

        Although such losses were only in exercises and its possible that operational restraints were put on US naval forces during such exercises it highlights the fact that US Navy carrier battlegroups could be vulnerable to submarine attack. During the Cold War the principle objective of the Soviet Navy was to eliminate US naval air superiority. The principle means of doing that was through Soviet nuclear submarines which were the Soviet Union’s primary naval asset, and followed/shadowed US aircraft carriers and trained to destroy them through conventional or nuclear means in wartime. In the Twilight 2000 timeline this could have led to huge American naval losses. ”

        As you can see not only have diesel electric sub sunk every conceivable surface ships they also sunk nuclear subs. In fact in the contest between nuclear and diesel-electric nuclear seems to be the pray with ” Australian Collins Class HMAS Sheehan hunted down and sank the Los Angeles Class USS Olympia”

        This list doesn’t include nuclear submarine victories like the French Rubis class nuclear Marine Casablanca which the Péan inter-allied manoeuvres of 1998, managed to “sink” the USS Eisenhower and her Ticonderoga class escort cruiser.

      • Yes, just like aircraft, large size is a disadvantage… and supercarriers are the largest ships there are, with nuclear submarines being significantly larger on average than DE/AIP submarines.

      • ” 1.139 km F-35C, according to what I’ve written down.”

        So about ~1100 km. The other issue is that you don’t want to be at the absolute limit of your endurance range, otherwise there’s nothing to do but reach the destination, drop the ordnance and turn back. Unless there’s an inflight refueling along the way, if you get intercepted, you’re in trouble as you won’t have any fuel. Granted the other issue is that the F-35C will be in trouble if it gets intercepted due to its large draggy fuselage and high wing loading, but that’s another issue.

        @Andrei

        The only way to maintain 30 knots like that would be to have an all nuclear battlegroup, which is to say the escorting cruisers are nuclear and the logistics will likely have to be nuclear as well. That’s possible, but prohibitively pricey.

        I think that there were 16 such exercises where carriers were “sunk”. Logical conclusion is that they are vulnerable.

        You are right about submarines too. In WWII, the German U-Boats may have relied a lot of on their deck guns, but things have changed since then. Torpedoes too have gotten a lot more deadly.

        • “I think that there were 16 such exercises where carriers were “sunk”. Logical conclusion is that they are vulnerable. ” – The only way a carrier will be vulnerable to a Diesel sub is if by chance is sails in front of it. And that is what has happened in all those exercises. If the sub has to chase the carrier he will never catch it. So we are talking of very specific vulnerability… just as long as the carrier is moving along an expected line of approach and the sub is also sitting there waiting at the exact same time. You understand these are immovable rules which is also why in WW2 no USA Carrier group was ever hit in open waters while cruising and famous sinking of Japanese’s large capital ships by submarines occurred leaving harbors, etc. while the sub stalked the entrance.

          The F-35C has more range than its immediate predecessors and in theory that will add an enormous amount of ocean surface for enemy subs and aircraft to search thus making its location harder to find. It acts as a defense of the carrier in that sense.

          You can go all the way back to the day of the Greek and Persian wars to find instances where a fleet got itself in a bad position and lost. A larger fleet needs more ocean surface to maintain its advantage. In constrained waters you loose that advantage and that is what those 16 sinking in exercises tell you.

          Right now the USA Navy has challenges. They are operational and some of them have to do with equipment. They are looking at some of the places they might have to fight and realize they need smaller and more agile. Some waters are so shallow that not even diesel subs can operate in them and larger surface vessels only with difficulty. But to use some of these locations as an argument that the USA Navy will not manage to work elsewhere is not realistic.

      • “You can go all the way back to the day of the Greek and Persian wars to find instances where a fleet got itself in a bad position and lost. A larger fleet needs more ocean surface to maintain its advantage. In constrained waters you loose that advantage and that is what those 16 sinking in exercises tell you.”

        Going back to the day of Greek and Persian wars you find absolutely no major battle, except convoy actions like the Battles of the Atlantic, that took place in the open ocean in deep water, not even when the carrier was involved. The reason why this dose not happen is that you have absolutely nothing to fight over in the deep ocean. Battles happen when some fleet threatens something the enemy is holding and that something is usually on land, and that fleet will have to enter in constricted waters to get that something. The focus of the US on hypothetical battles in blue waters, in the deep ocean is a hold-over of the Cold War and the hypothetical third Battle of the Atlantic as the US tries to reinforce the Europeans and the Soviets challenge them, it’s the only scenario where the US Navy can choose to fight in unconstrained waters. In any other scenario the US Navy would come close to land to support either amphibious operations or conduct strikes against an enemies assets on land.

  3. Instead of the Astute you could use the French Baracuda class. It’s going to bee the cheapest SSN, one of the smallest, and most maneuverable, it is also going to be one of the quietest for a very simple reason, it uses nuclear-electric propulsion instead of nuclear like the Astute and other British, US and Russian SSNs. French and Chinese are the only ones that currently use nuclear electric propulsion. Americans want to try it for their next SSBN. What it means is basically that unlike “classical” nuclear propulsion where the steam generated by the nuclear reactor spins a steam turbine which spins the propeller, a nuclear-electric propulsion system is more like diesel electric, in that the steam turbine spins a generator, which powers an electric motor which spins the propeller. The advantage of nuclear-electric propulsion over nuclear propulsion is that you can acoustically decouple the nuclear reactor and it’s noisy pumps from the hull, which you can’t do with nuclear propulsion because the propeller shaft is practically tied directly to the reactor.
    Also you might think that instead of the Gotland which is nearing obsolescence (the Swedes are already building its replacement) you might use the French Scorepene class AIP submarine. Why to I suggest that? Because the French AIP system is practically their nuclear-electric system wit the nuclear reactor removed and the steam generated from the combustion of ethanol and oxygen. By choosing this two classes together economies of scale would reduce the price of both because they would share components in their most expensive system, propulsion. Not to mention the economy in both training of personnel and spare parts coming from higher standardization across both the AIP and nuclear submarine fleets.

      • I’m gonna look into it. But I think it’s cheaper then the Astute and the program so far went without a hitch. It’s practically like comparing Rafale to Typhoon.

      • Found it right on wikipedia:
        “On 22 December 2006 the French government placed a €7.9 billion order for six Barracuda submarines with DCN and their nuclear powerplants with Areva-Technicatome.[6] ”

        I think this also covers cost R&D cost and comes to 1.3 biliion Euros per boat which makes it cheaper then the Astute. Which cost 1.2 billion pounds per boat for the first four boats (which included R&D) and 700 million pounds for the next two boats (without R*D) which is the cost you use in this article.

        Other quotes from the wikipedia article about Baracuta:

        “Barracudas will use technology from the Triomphant class, including pump jet propulsion. This class reportedly produces approximately 1/1000 of the detectable noise of the Redoutable-class boats (submarines), and they are ten times more sensitive in detecting other submarines.”

        “The Barracuda class nuclear reactor incorporates several improvements over that of the preceding Rubis. Notably, it extends the time between refuelling and complex overhauls (RCOHs) from 7 to 10 years, enabling higher at-sea availability.”

      • I don’t think we can find cost without R&D until the French Navy orders a second batch of them. That’s why you could find the cost without R&D for the Astute, the Royal Navy order boats 5 and 6. But comparing the cost with R&D with that of the Astute, one can see that the Barracuda cost per boat is smaller. Practically the two programs cost the same but the French got 6 boats out of it and the Brits only four. And I doubt it that the R&D cost were significantly higher for the Astute in fact I’m willing to bet that the Barracudas are more advanced then the Astutes.

        • I agree on all counts, but until the second batch is ordered, we won’t know Barracudas’ price per unit. Shame, considering Astute’s problems and likely far higher unit cost.

      • Under the circumstances, perhaps it is best to make a best estimate.

        We may not know of the true costs from the second batch either as they may have changed the internals compared to the first batch.

  4. I suspect NATO has had it’s day, too many of it’s members are tied into an expansionist EU.

    I would be interested to see what a commonwealth navy would look like. The 92 ship types listed belong to so many different manufacturers and nations that i cannot see the sort of rationalization required. The commonwealth on the other hand has at least a common language and a desire to protect sea lanes world wide.

    There is also a rough commonality of requirements for upcoming equipment programs.

    • Yeah I would agree with this.

      There seem to be tiers now of Nato nations. The US is on top of course, then the Western Europeans are below that along with maybe the other Anglo nations, then it’s everyone else. As a force it’s less something about security it seems and more about enforcing corporate domination, which it does a poor job of doing, at least relative to the amount of money that is spent on it.

      I think that it is time for Nato to be disbanded as well.

      • Chris, do not under-estimate the capacity of western nations to militarize their societies and go from spending 2% of their economic out-put in military hardware to 30% plus.

        Even the levies can be improved by rigorous use of physical fitness during school years as well as Summer out-door camps so the number of kids reaching military age that are fit for service improves from the current 30% to 70%.

        Both of these things have been done in the past so we are not speculating.

        What tempts some powers to take these paths is the illusion that if they fight a SHORT war they might survive it with their economies in good enough shape and in possession of their war booty. Case in point are the Chinese whose dream is to strike fast and serve the world with an accomplish fact… but it could turn out to be a protracted war and then what????

      • “Chris, do not under-estimate the capacity of western nations to militarize their societies and go from spending 2% of their economic out-put in military hardware to 30% plus.”

        First question, why is this even necessary?

        De-escalation is what is needed for the current dispute between Russia and the West.

        The other types of wars that the US fights, mostly against small nations with a fraction of the population of the US do not require any mobilization. Whether the US should be fighting in many of these wars is open for debate. I think in most cases, they are counterproductive. The other thing is that in these wars, they inevitably seem to descend into counter-guerrilla operations.

        “Even the levies can be improved by rigorous use of physical fitness during school years as well as Summer out-door camps so the number of kids reaching military age that are fit for service improves from the current 30% to 70%.

        Both of these things have been done in the past so we are not speculating.”

        Considering the world situation, I think that it is unlikely that it could be done so quickly. There are other problems. In the past, most nations did not suffer from a severe obesity epidemic. Granted, not every job requires that one be in peak physical condition, but obesity remains a very serious impediment considering the percentage of people who are quite fat.

        The other is that the cost of training a modern soldier is much, much higher than in the past, as is the cost of military equipment. Even with 1/3-2/3 of the entire US GDP spent on military, I doubt a full mobilization would be affordable. The other is the defense death spiral, which has been covered in detail elsewhere. The MICC will not just “go away” in the event of a massive increase in military spending; quite the opposite, it will play a bigger and therefore more influential role in setting public policy. That will, if historical trends are any indication, lead to even more expensive, complex weapons.

        “What tempts some powers to take these paths is the illusion that if they fight a SHORT war they might survive it with their economies in good enough shape and in possession of their war booty. Case in point are the Chinese whose dream is to strike fast and serve the world with an accomplish fact… but it could turn out to be a protracted war and then what????”

        Judging by China’s current situation, that would be a very unwise strategy for them.

        China’s best bet is to move up the value chain the way Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan did. Remember, in the 1950s, “Made in Japan” used to mean very low quality products. That has changed drastically within the past 60 years. South Korea cars are another example – they were once cheap, low end vehicles. Today they can compete with the best that everyone else has to offer.

        Economic dominance is much more probable than military dominance. I suppose in some ways, Germany has discovered this the hard way as well – and it has managed to squeeze out much of the advanced manufacturing competition in Europe.

        • The importance that is often forgotten is that it takes a very short time to militarize a society and just a little longer to develop a fortress state (like Israel) where every one is a soldier and the entire society can be mobilized.

          The most important ingredient to go this route is social cohesion. That because you will be arming everyone. This is a barrier that countries with 1800 style imperialistic mind sets like Russia cannot afford to do. Look at the head achas they have from having conscripted the Chechens… imagine if this was done in China where the Han is universally hated.

          Point again is that you should not tempt the devil with silly actions like the Russians or the Chinese are doing.

          And obesity would go away overnight, in particular among the youth, with a proper military program and you can add to the things I mentioned earlier a cadet type instruction in high school where you teach kids to march and the rudimentary of military training… plus a highly propagandistic national history that exalts service to the country and conditions such service as a prerequisite of high office. All of this has been done before. I am not making up a single thing up.

      • There is no political will at the moment to enact anything like military conscription in the US. It would lead to mass protests. Also, women will also need to be conscripted as their obesity rates are almost as high as men (and morbid obesity rates are higher).

        The US does not need to be militarized like Israel. There are no imminent threats of land invasion. Canada is not a threat and Mexico, although there are law enforcement problems relating to drugs, does not require mass mobilization. Likewise, illegal immigration is a law enforcement problem (and mostly a self-inflicted problem as a result of neoliberal economics).

        As far as what is happening in Ukraine, I think that the US deserves a good deal of the blame for escalating the situation. Most of the European nations have indicated (Merkel in the lead) that they would prefer a diplomatic solution.

        I do not believe that China is about to attack the US – certainly not through a land invasion, although at some point, it is possible that it may try someday to absorb Taiwan. That will only happen though, if it feels that it can win, which brings us to the real problem: economics.

        At the moment, China is making rapid relative gains to compared to the US in terms of manufacturing, living standards, technology, and the economy as a whole. China does not need to make an act of aggression. In a few decades, even if China’s economic growth slows (which it probably will at some point), it will be too wealthy for the US to contain. That, and the US is rapidly losing manufacturing leadership, which is critical to war.

  5. @HGR
    You’re missing the point. Diesel submarines won’t chase a carrier in open waters. They stalk as Andrei and I have described.

    Probability of an aircraft carrier sailing over a submarine is very high indeed, especially if you have a large number of submarines.

    Let’s think about this for a moment:
    – Price of aircraft carrier
    – Price of aircraft
    – Investment in crew training (arguably the most valuable of the 3)

    That’s a huge investment for which you could have dozens of submarines for equal cost. Even more so because the US insists on building nuclear powered supercarriers versus what Picard has proposed.

    It doesn’t assure that carriers are obsolete, it just means that they are much more vulnerable unless you have submarine superiority. When it comes to diesel vs nuclear close to the coast, diesels have the advantage, both because of numbers and because of silence (can use AIP there). Newer nuclear submarines do have natural convection at low speeds, so the advantage may be somewhat negated, but they still are larger.

    As far as carrier operations, at most, you could operate a few hundred km from shore. Otherwise you cannot conduct strike missions, CAS missions, etc. That’s still a place where the enemy will have a lot of submarines. Closer in and there are other problems, like land based anti-ship missiles.

    The other issue is that if you can fly fighters to the enemy’s land, than the enemy can probably fly their fighters back to you. As far as range goes, I don’t think the F-35 will have a range advantage against the majority of Su-27 variants, which is likely to be the fighter than is being used in the “China-Taiwan war” scenario.

    On the note of “deep water”, the South China sea averages about ~1200m in depth. That’s deeper than say, a continental shelf, but not very deep waters at all.

    • “Probability of an aircraft carrier sailing over a submarine is very high indeed, especially if you have a large number of submarines.”- I hope you are kidding. Stalking is another story but the carrier should be able to avoid choke points, harbors, etc.

      The aircraft is versatile. It can strike at shipping, land and fight other aircrafts. So it is something a little more valuable than a submarine.

      • I’m totally serious about this. Not talking about harbors. I’m talking about the waters a few hundred kilometers away from land.

        The diesel submarines simply have to wait for the carriers to come to them. They patiently wait for it. There’s only a few areas to launch aircraft that are optimal. That’s where the submarines can lay their trap. Carriers have predictable patterns, like all surface ships. Submarines observe this, anticipate probable locations, and wait. At that point, they can simply stay on battery, use their AIP, and stay submerged. Then when the moment comes, they launch their torpedoes. Certainly this is not foolproof, but remember, a diesel submarine can be bought for a fraction of that of a nuclear submarine. That means the laws of probabilities favors the submarines.

        The other thing to consider is that in any way, a small percentage of exceptional captains and crew will distinguish themselves. With more submarines, there’s a higher probability of having an exceptional crew. All the more so if there’s a greater emphasis on peacetime training.

        Relating to nuclear submarines, during the Cold War, Soviet captains were able to, on multiple occasions, get into firing position and practice torpedo attacks on American carrier battle groups. They were not detected. In fact, the only reason we in the West know this is because of reports and in some cases interviews with Soviet captains, who could only talk after the USSR had collapsed.

        As far as strike at shipping – submarines can do that quite well. In fact, I would argue that they are much better than carriers for sinking an enemy merchant fleet.

        • “Relating to nuclear submarines, during the Cold War, Soviet captains were able to, on multiple occasions, get into firing position and practice torpedo attacks on American carrier battle groups. They were not detected.” – Chris, I would not make an example of Soviet seamanship and specially that of its Nuclear boats’ captains.

          The “official” navy story is that Amphibs will be 100 miles off the coast and that carriers will be further still out. The connection to the landing being carried out by the Ospreys which can travel almost twice as fast as an helicopter and presumably land before the enemy has had a chance to react. I do not believe any one would rely on a diesel sub patroling such an expanse of sea in the hope of accidentally running into a carrier.

        • “I do not believe any one would rely on a diesel sub patroling such an expanse of sea in the hope of accidentally running into a carrier.”

          Diesel subs will “accidentally” run into a carrier sooner or later, especially if there is large number of them. But carrier has to be kept resupplied, and that supply chain is vulnerable to submarine attacks.

        • That is true.

          They are working on how to make fuel out of salt water but they are not there yet!

          The carrier is not invulnerable and of course amphib operations require them to concentrate and give up some of the defenses that large expanses of ocean provide. And supply ships have to avoid sea lanes so that means circuitous and inefficient transportation of supplies. But all these risks are known. The carrier who wants to be safe cannot get himself into constrained waters because not only will subs pray on them but mines, etc.

        • “But all these risks are known.”

          Known, yes, aviodable, not really. And even if carrier stays well out in the open sea, ships transporting supplies and ground troops are still vulnerable to DE/AIP submarines (and even carrier is vulnerable when at normal cruise speed of the battlegroup, though nuclear attack submarines are more likely to be used in the open waters). Meaning that, no matter how one looks at it, it is illogical to have entire submarine force composed of nuclear submarines.

      • “I hope you are kidding. Stalking is another story but the carrier should be able to avoid choke points, harbors, etc. ”

        It can’t, if it is supporting amphibious landings then it is constricted in where it can go, if it is escorting convoys then it is restricted in maximum speed, and its escorts also restrict its speed and endurance. And in any area of operations it is very likely that the enemy will have large number of submarines present, which means that probability of carrier sailling over one is very high indeed.

        “The aircraft is versatile. It can strike at shipping, land and fight other aircrafts.”

        Indeed, but carrier itself is very vulnerable to submarines, so you need to be able to contest control of the sea before carriers arrive.

  6. It gets even worse actually in the case of real world examples. The USN has neglected for its surface fleet a strong emphasis on ASW operations since the end of the Cold War.

    • “It gets even worse actually in the case of real world examples. The USN has neglected for its surface fleet a strong emphasis on ASW operations since the end of the Cold War.”

      In a RIMPAC after 2004 the US Navy had a Sea Hawk parked over the Collins class 24/7. Because they knew that if they lost it, it was going to wreck havoc. Off course the captain of the Collins class wiped his ass with the rules of engagement :D, which prevented the subs to dive bellow 40 meters, and dived bellow 40 meters was promptly lost by the Seahawk, because hey the first thermocline is at 40 meters, and proceeded to wreck havoc on American carriers and nuclear subs.

  7. 40 metre dive limit? That exercise was rigged against submarines then.

    It’s not really a representation of real world combat. The captain, imo, was right to violate that limit.

    As far as knowing if they lost it, the submarine would wreck havoc, the logical conclusion is that diesel submarines will wreck havoc in a real war scenario because it will be very hard to find them.

    • “40 metre dive limit? That exercise was rigged against submarines then. ”

      That’s standard in most exercises, just like the 10000ft “hard deck” limit under which fighters can not descent during any ACM exercise starting from basic ACM up to Red Flag and Top Gun.

      • Most of the justification for this limits is safety. And while the 10000 ft. limit might be justified for fighters, because they could fly into terrain, the dive limit for subs has no justification because to become a sub skippepr one has to be an elite, there is no way such a person would do rookie mistakes such as navigation errors or diving under his crush depth.

      • “That’s standard in most exercises, just like the 10000ft “hard deck” limit under which fighters can not descent during any ACM exercise starting from basic ACM up to Red Flag and Top Gun.”

        Yeah, but “hard deck” is a safety feature so that pilot has time to recover if any problems occur.

  8. Occasionally submarines do run aground at times. So do surface ships really.

    But in the context of the exercise, I agree, it is mostly about making something that will be biased against submarines. I think that in terms of exercises, they should be as realistic as possible without risking injury to the crew being trained.

    Regarding the hard deck limit, I’ve said this before, but I suspect that even in contested airspace, a CAS aircraft at low altitude may be surprisingly survivable.

    For one, there’s the fact that the CAS pilot is used to flying at very low altitudes, while an air superiority pilot, unless they’ve spent a lot of time training exactly for that mission might struggle.

    There’s also the fact that if an air superiority pilot tries to intercept in enemy or contested airspace, ground fire could be a concern. CAS is far better equipped for surviving in that kind of an environment.

    • “There’s also the fact that if an air superiority pilot tries to intercept in enemy or contested airspace, ground fire could be a concern. CAS is far better equipped for surviving in that kind of an environment.”

      True. And if air superiority fighter tries to stay at higher altitude, it will face problems trying to acquire low-flying target.

  9. Submarines can deny the enemy the use of sea lanes, but can not assure oneself the use of sea lanes nor can it project power inland, which is what navy is about (ref, The Influence of Sea Power Upon History: 1660–1783, Mahan), by the way you may be interest in checking out ( https://www.google.com.tw/search?q=tuojiang+missile+boat&client=firefox-a&hs=gj&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&channel=fflb&tbm=isch&tbo=u&source=univ&sa=X&ei=WYImVNz6Loqj8AWu64K4Bg&ved=0CCwQsAQ&biw=1304&bih=671) or search for Tuojiang missile boat, which I think if air defense, anti submarine be added can form convoy a protective wolf pack better than LCS

    • “but can not assure oneself the use of sea lanes nor can it project power inland, which is what navy is about”

      Carriers are the best option for both, though other ships can be quite useful depending on circumstances.

      • For carrier to project that force, its a risky undertaking, if you recall the initial result of the war game millennium challenge, and the constant successes of simulated attacks on US carrier by allied submarines. In the Context of NATO orientated Navy (in contrast of US NAVY, Pacific Operation), I think the focus will be convoy and anti-convoy operation. But even in this scenario, super carrier will be the number one priority for the opposition to taken down. One particular number that stood up in your proposal is 7 French and UK Carrier also the 55 US carrier, but without specification of the type, size and capability. I doubt these will be the super carrier like Nimitz, I don’t think even a Charles de Gaulle class like carrier can be readily afforded in these number. Or you want to have several classes of carrier in specialized role. Such as super carrier to operate AWACS and Long Range interceptor for intercept Super sonic Bomber such as Tu-160, Tu-22M like bomber formed into task force, Charles de Gaulle like Fleet carrier to be the organic air cover for the convoy or Landing Party operating Rafale, EF-2000, JAS-39 like multirole medium fighter, anti submarine aircraft (S-3 like) with AWACS operating capability, and can be switched from defensive and offensive ( in support of Super carrier) operation, and finally the Mistral-class like and Izumo-class helicopter operating platform for Amphibious and ASW operation respectively. And can’t help but notice, the German Navy looks small in your proposal

      • “One particular number that stood up in your proposal is 7 French and UK Carrier also the 55 US carrier, but without specification of the type, size and capability”

        I have specified these things here:
        https://defenseissues.wordpress.com/2014/09/06/aircraft-carrier-proposal-3/

        It is an austere conventional carrier that is slightly shorter and narrower than CdG.

        “And can’t help but notice, the German Navy looks small in your proposal”

        It has 48 ships compared to current 28. Nowhere close to French or UK navies, but that is because even today Germany doesn’t spend that much on a navy compared to France and UK (and for a good reason – Germany has no overseas colonies and relatively short shoreline, most of it towards the closed sea.; this means that Germany has no need for aircraft carriers or nuclear submarines, which are some of the most expensive ships nowadays).

    • @JihHou

      You are pretty much saying what Picard578 is saying. Submarines are for anti-shipping while carriers are for projection of power. If you read carefully his proposal he is advocating for more specialist role for each type of ship: submarines AShW and ASW, carriers power projection and air-superiority, frigates escort and ASW.
      In this he contradicts the current mind-state that concentrates on multi-role ships whether they are corvette, frigates, destroyers, cruisers or carriers and completely ignores the submarine relegating it to the role of freighter hunter or ballistic missile launcher.

      • To be fair, submarines were predominantly freighter hunters… but they still bagged quite a few warships in the process, and in any case, logistics are the Achilles heel of any military – and ships are the most economical way to transport large amounts of cargo.

      • @JihHou

        Thing is, without logistics, nations lose wars. It’s every bit as important as bringing the enemy navy down.

        The Battle of the Atlantic in WWII was all about logistics. The Pacific War WWII between US and the Japanese really put pressure on Japan when the US began sinking the Japanese merchant navy. That was much more decisive than Midway.

        Many nations without sea lanes starve. Had Germany won the Battle of the Atlantic, things could have been much more difficult. The UK would have been much more hard pressed. To a lesser extent so would the USSR have been. Likewise, in WWI, the blockade against Germany was a decisive factor in eventually assuring Allied victory.

        I suppose a case could be argued that large nations with lots of land and a moderate to low population density could survive a blockade. The US for example might be less affected, and perhaps the USSR would have been in WWII as well.

        Logistics is very much at the core of warfare.

      • What Chris said is basically what is written in SunTzu art of war second verse. As for Air craft Carrier, the fleet carrier of Navies todays are simply too big to be disperse to protect the convoy, few of us today recall the contribution of escort carrier. As Picard 578 had pointed out in various occasion in his/her fighter proposal, the likes of ROCN TuoJiang class missile boat in my mind can be best to be adopted with modular arms/surveillance package as the new type of “escort destroyer” and dare I call them “shepherd pack”.

  10. Greetings from Europe

    I just found this blog and I am reading the entries with some interest but here I am quite astounded. For all the talk about technical data, effectiveness, statistics…. do you realize that European navies have things called “strategic role” and “tactical doctrine” which are not derived from general NATO structure but which are being pooled into the alliance? You are also aware that as most other navies they are designed to both fulfill certain specific roles and respond to certain specific threats?

    What you describe in your proposition betrays fundamental misunderstanding of the reality of those navies. What would Royal Navy do with 30-something FAC? What would France do with so many aircraft carriers? You realize that there was a REASON why Denmark cut all of their submarines and small craft? Why do all the Baltic states have no navies in your proposal. Why do all the countries have identical ships despite different requirements? The Mediterranean is different from the North Sea which is different from the Baltic which is different from the Adriatic which is different from…. I can’t judge (yet) your expertise on matters of air force but so far I can say that you have absolutely no practical (perhaps even theoretical) understanding of what and how navies operate! This is a giant exercise in futile statistics which makes sense in a PC game and not in the real world!!!

    Also it seems to completely disregard operating costs.

    I have no idea what this exercise was meant to exemplify but you are clearly out of your mind!

    • “do you realize that European navies have things called “strategic role” and “tactical doctrine” which are not derived from general NATO structure but which are being pooled into the alliance? You are also aware that as most other navies they are designed to both fulfill certain specific roles and respond to certain specific threats?”

      Yes, I do. But fact is that despite those expectations, NATO members just as often act on an individual basis. Regardless of what some think, rest of NATO does *not* exist simply to support USA – or vice-versa. This means that countries have to cover all bases. And in alliance missions, it also comes into play since these are typically done outside European waters, so what you are describing does not exactly apply.

      “What you describe in your proposition betrays fundamental misunderstanding of the reality of those navies. What would Royal Navy do with 30-something FAC? What would France do with so many aircraft carriers?”

      Libya? France had its single aircraft carrier in there and of course it got limited number of strikes. All these countries are also doing policing in other parts of the world, and Royal Navy at least has some bases in Mediterranean. FACs are ideal for these roles. Why use destroyers to hunt Somali pirates when you can send a FAC group?

      “Why do all the countries have identical ships despite different requirements?”

      Logistics. If everyone uses same set of ships, it means everyone has same spare parts, which in turn means that you can easily have ships from Germany deploying from Pearl Harbor without need to establish extremely long resupply chain, for example. And you can always modify weapons and sensors on a ship to better perform one purpose – they are not restricted by platform itself as much as aircraft or tanks are, so they can easily use modular design.

      What is one of reasons/excuses for so many NATO countries buying F-35? Why all NATO countries have standardized ammunition regardless of actual weapons used? Same reasoning.

      “The Mediterranean is different from the North Sea which is different from the Baltic which is different from the Adriatic which is different from…”

      I’m very well aware of that. What *you* do not seem to be aware of is that all NATO countries are expected to send ships to missions that are done by the alliance, and typically very far from their home waters. Just take a look at Somalia. They are also expected to help each other out in case of the attack. In fact, NATO ships do very few missions within their members’ home waters, so optimizing fleet just for that is a folly. Even outside NATO missions, many NATO members still have deployments far from home. UN missions, leftover territories from colonial era, alliances…

      • “Yes, I do. But fact is that despite those expectations, NATO members just as often act on an individual basis. Regardless of what some think, rest of NATO does *not* exist simply to support USA – or vice-versa. This means that countries have to cover all bases.”

        I am sorry, perhaps I wasn’t clear. What I said was that almost every NATO country (with some exceptions for political reasons) determines a naval doctrine first with a focus on their own priorities and then they delegate operational capacity to alliance structure.

        No do explain: what goals are to be achieved by the numerous (30+) fast attack craft of Royal Navy or French Navy? Because clearly you haven’t bothered to read the outlines of their maritime security strategy.

        Also how do you intend to provide escort for the countless aircraft carriers?

        Just two questions from the top of the long list… humour me please.

        “Libya? France had its single aircraft carrier in there and of course it got limited number of strikes. All these countries are also doing policing in other parts of the world, and Royal Navy at least has some bases in Mediterranean. FACs are ideal for these roles. Why use destroyers to hunt Somali pirates when you can send a FAC group?”

        And how do you intend to provide long time support fast attack craft in the dark red region of 2010 attacks? I hope you can check actual distances involved in the map. How do you intend to get the FACs over there in the first place?

        Do you even know what happens during a pirate boat intercept? Do you know how that works?

        “Logistics. If everyone uses same set of ships, it means everyone has same spare parts, which in turn means that you can easily have ships from Germany deploying from Pearl Harbor without need to establish extremely long resupply chain, for example. And you can always modify weapons and sensors on a ship to better perform one purpose – they are not restricted by platform itself as much as aircraft or tanks are, so they can easily use modular design.”

        So because of logistics we are going to bike in the snow and in the water because it works so well on all hard surfaces? And why would German Navy deploy from Pearl Harbour? Do you even consider things such as plausibility or just go with whatever fits your preconceived notions?

        And let’s just put aside the existing infrastructure, technology, knowledge base…

        “What is one of reasons/excuses for so many NATO countries buying F-35? Why all NATO countries have standardized ammunition regardless of actual weapons used? Same reasoning.”

        The reasons behind F-35 are political and economical and have partly to do with de-facto monopoly on American multirole aircraft achieved by LM. There are no self-sufficient combat aircraft manufacturers left except for Dassault and Saab in Europe and the Eurofighter was proven to be very problematic.

        Comparing it to ammunition which is orders of magnitude more expendable and serves a different purpose (or plays a different role) is betraying complete lack of understanding of the matter. You are supposed to freely arrange ammo logistics but you are not supposed to freely re-distribute vehicles or more complex weapons which require training. Aircraft and ships are the most complicated and training-intensive vessels in existence. Ammo is stuff you put on a launcher/in a barrel and shoot.

        “I’m very well aware of that. What *you* do not seem to be aware of is that all NATO countries are expected to send ships to missions that are done by the alliance, and typically very far from their home waters. Just take a look at Somalia. They are also expected to help each other out in case of the attack. In fact, NATO ships do very few missions within their members’ home waters, so optimizing fleet just for that is a folly. Even outside NATO missions, many NATO members still have deployments far from home. UN missions, leftover territories from colonial era, alliances…””

        Is that why you put multitudes of short range, small craft?

        I am actually terrified at the extent to which you are determined to deny the reality of maritime service. I have no idea how competent you are in terms of aircraft, whether you have any experience in maintenance, actual flight etc but so far it is beyond any dispute that you have no idea what maritime service is like, how logistics is arranged, what are the current levels of sunken cost/capital, the current organizational and political and economic backgrounds of every navy… probably you have no clue how you go about designing, ordering, building and commissioning a vessel.

        That you have no clue what levels of operating costs you have to deal with is painfully clear. We are talking the cost of the vessel in a 5 to 15 year span depending on the specs and design which means that commissioning 7 aircraft carriers will require the cost of 7 aircraft carriers every 10 years in maintenance – let alone the cost of equipping them with operational aircraft….

        That’s just beyond absurd.

        The fact that you don’t seem to understand European inter-EU and inter-NATO politics is also pretty evident. You’re not European are you?

        ….

        I still don’t understand why some countries which have navies currently don’t have them in the future. I am assuming you have an explanation for that too, right?

        • “And why would German Navy deploy from Pearl Harbour?”

          I was giving an example. It can be any location across the globe. UK and France still have a ton of smallish islands and outposts left over from the colonial era, as do have US.

          “You are supposed to freely arrange ammo logistics but you are not supposed to freely re-distribute vehicles or more complex weapons which require training. Aircraft and ships are the most complicated and training-intensive vessels in existence. Ammo is stuff you put on a launcher/in a barrel and shoot.”

          I’m well aware of that. But ships have to be replaced anyway when their service life runs out, which automatically requires retraining. I don’t recall suggesting that some wizard snaps his fingers and immediately replaces all ships in NATO.

          “Is that why you put multitudes of short range, small craft? ”

          All important naval operations happen near the shore (surprise, surprise, humans live on land). Littoral operations, especially in areas where there are many islands, require numerous small and agile aircraft in order to find hidden enemy forces, small craft, DE submarines etc.

          *That* is the only reason why I’m so insistent on having many small craft.

          “That you have no clue what levels of operating costs you have to deal with is painfully clear. We are talking the cost of the vessel in a 5 to 15 year span depending on the specs and design which means that commissioning 7 aircraft carriers will require the cost of 7 aircraft carriers every 10 years in maintenance – let alone the cost of equipping them with operational aircraft….”

          As before, I do not recall suggesting that *all* ships be replaced immediately. But to answer your question, nuclear aircraft carrier of Nimitz class costs 340 million USD per year, and Gerald Ford is unlikely to cost less. Decomissioning it costs 900 million USD. Nimitz carriers are supposed to be replaced soon by 10 Gerald R Ford carriers, in span of next 43 years. Gerald R Ford has a price per ship of 10,44 billion USD. This means 113,4 billion USD on replacement plus 146,2 billion USD operating costs, for 259,6 billion USD total over next 43 years.

          Carriers I have proposed cost 900 million USD per ship procurement, and maybe 70 million USD per year operating cost (being both conventional and far smaller than Nimitz class). If 10 Nimitzes are replaced by 55 carriers over next 40 years, we have 220 total operating years for Nimitz class (74,8 billion USD), 1.210 total operating years for CVX (85 billion USD), 55 new carriers for 49,5 billion USD. This gives a total of 210 billion USD over next 40 years, or 222 billion USD over next 43 years. So we have savings of 37,6 billion USD.

          And equipping them with FLX + ALX will cost less than equipping new Gerald Fords or existing Nimtzes with F-35, if done soon enough. ALX is similar to A-10, FLX uses many existing parts from Typhoon, Gripen NG and Rafale, so it will be less of a maintenance/logistics shock as well. Situation is similar with French De Gaulle, which is also a nuclear carrier albeit smaller than Nimitz.

          When it comes to UK Queen Elizabeth class, I don’t want to speculate since they are not yet in service, so operating costs are not avaliable. However, both carriers are expected to cost 6,2 billion GBP, or 9,6 billion USD. This easily allows for 6 CVX carriers, complete with air groups (note that I did not include air groups in price of Queen Elizabeth; 40 F-35s would easily cost 6-8 billion USD, which would give price for both QEs as 22-26 billion USD, allowing 13-16 CVXs; still no less than 6-8 if R&D is included).

          “You’re not European are you?”

          I am. I just think that most politicians are best used as a banquet for anthropophages.

          “I am sorry, I am used to editing my posts. I forgot the map:”

          Don’t worry, I found it myself.

      • “All important naval operations happen near the shore (surprise, surprise, humans live on land). Littoral operations, especially in areas where there are many islands, require numerous small and agile aircraft in order to find hidden enemy forces, small craft, DE submarines etc.”

        Are you saying that the main operational goals for the German navy are going to be tasks close to shore – especially German shore? What if I may ask are the main strategic tasks of Norwegian or French navies or the Royal Navy in time of conflict? Can you tell me that? Can you tell me the principal areas of operations for Danish, Polish or Dutch navies?

        “Carriers I have proposed cost 900 million USD per ship procurement, and maybe 70 million USD per year operating cost (being both conventional and far smaller than Nimitz class). If 10 Nimitzes are replaced by 55 carriers over next 40 years, we have 220 total operating years for Nimitz class (74,8 billion USD), 1.210 total operating years for CVX (85 billion USD), 55 new carriers for 49,5 billion USD. This gives a total of 210 billion USD over next 40 years, or 222 billion USD over next 43 years. So we have savings of 37,6 billion USD.”

        How did you estimate the cost of the ship considering that your latest proposal )AC no 3) is a bespoke design? Did you account for the technologies used or just approximate from whatever was you base model? How did you estimate the operating cost? Is it a figure that we can calculate on a per sortie or per day at sea or per mile to compare actual efficiency? Did you estimate the endurance, logistical support, necessary fuel, ammo for the aircraft proportional or comparable to that of a Nimitz? How long do you intend your ship to be able to support combat sorties? A day? Two? Did you calculate the number of people necessary to operate the ship?

        Also AC no 3 has 36 aircraft – that’s at best a third of the aircraft at a supercarrier. With 55 carriers compared to 10 you have 5.5 times 1/3 which is 1.8 as many aircraft. Assuming your totally unrealistic and hypothetical pricing which doesn’t account for the reality of aerospace industry can you tell me what is the (rough estimate) proportion of operating cost per aircraft compared to acquisition cost? Also what costs fall within “operating cost”?

        Because until I see some decent explanation to that it’s just an exercise in futility. A painfully ignorant one.

        “I am. I just think that most politicians are best used as a banquet for anthropophages.”

        I am not interested in your opinions of the political system. I am interested in the fact that an European can be so totally clueless about basic geopolitical and strategic realities of the continent!

        Also you still haven’t answered:

        – how a small craft will get into the “dark red” zone and sustain prolonged operations.
        – how a typical anti-piracy patrol and intercept works
        – what is the reason for lack of navies for the Baltic states
        – what is the non-economic reason for elimination of small craft and submarines form Danish navy
        – how do you provide basic escort for your “revolutionary” ACs

        Nor any question about basic strategic goals of any of the navies in Europe.

        • “Are you saying that the main operational goals for the German navy are going to be tasks close to shore – especially German shore? What if I may ask are the main strategic tasks of Norwegian or French navies or the Royal Navy in time of conflict? Can you tell me that? Can you tell me the principal areas of operations for Danish, Polish or Dutch navies?”

          If you are asking about direct attack on said countries, then main tasks are to intercept enemy naval forces and supply ships. Which is best done by submarines, making discussion of surface combatants irrelevant in the context. And just FYI, Norway for a long time maintained a large force of small, fast boats. In fact, such vessels are ideal for operations along the Norwegian shore, due to its irregularity providing a lot of cover for small, fast ships such as missile gunboats and smaller. Same goes for Denmark and Croatia, and to a lesser extent, Germany (any attack on Germany though the Baltic Sea will mean combat near or among Denmark islands). And due to their fast speed and agility, FACs and missile gunboats can be used for harassing attacks even in the open sea.

          “How did you estimate the cost of the ship considering that your latest proposal )AC no 3) is a bespoke design?”

          By comparing it to actual conventional carriers.

          “Did you account for the technologies used or just approximate from whatever was you base model?”

          Base model plus safety margin due to design and technological differences. And said base model displaces some 10% more.

          Japanese Izumo also costs 1,14 billion USD at 20.000 t as well.
          http://www.scmp.com/comment/insight-opinion/article/1295912/ill-informed-storm-over-japans-aircraft-carrier-disguise

          “How did you estimate the operating cost?”

          I used a figure from an earlier article. Not sure if it is correct anymore.

          “Is it a figure that we can calculate on a per sortie or per day at sea or per mile to compare actual efficiency?”

          Standard peacetime cost.

          “Also AC no 3 has 36 aircraft – that’s at best a third of the aircraft at a supercarrier.”

          Nimitz typically carries no more than 50 aircraft. If all aircraft are replaced by F-18Cs, and it is loaded to capacity, it can carry up to 130 aircraft – but these are limited to fleet defense and some limited maritime strike.

          “Assuming your totally unrealistic and hypothetical pricing which doesn’t account for the reality of aerospace industry”

          Yeah, really. What makes you think so, besides wishful thinking?

          “can you tell me what is the (rough estimate) proportion of operating cost per aircraft compared to acquisition cost?”

          Proportion of what? Do you want direct operating cost, or total operating cost? Full number of hours in the air, peactime or wartime? FLX should have 6.000 hour airframe lifetime, so 6.000 * 4.600 = 28 million USD in direct operating cost, which is 65% of aircraft flyaway price.

          “I am interested in the fact that an European can be so totally clueless about basic geopolitical and strategic realities of the continent! ”

          These being? Geopolitical and strategic realities change, you can’t change fleet composition every ten years. Only constant “reality” is that Europe is at geographical crossroads of kinds, with Africa, Middle East and Russia at its borders, which means that there will be conflicts in and around Europe. That’s it.

      • Dear Picard 578

        “If you are asking about direct attack on said countries, then main tasks are to intercept enemy naval forces and supply ships.”

        From where to where? Can you do me a favour, open a map of Europe and tell me which country is going to send naval forces and supply ships? Also try to indicate where such operations could occur.

        ” Which is best done by submarines, making discussion of surface combatants irrelevant in the context.”

        And how are the submarines going to conduct maritime patrol, escort convoys, provide air defence for amphibious operations? If you are at all interested in the much more relevant Asia-Pacific region you’ll find that navies are about the only branch which is used on a regular basis during peacetime as policy or influence enforcing tool. How do you do that with a submarine?

        “And just FYI, Norway for a long time maintained a large force of small, fast boats. In fact, such vessels are ideal for operations along the Norwegian shore, due to its irregularity providing a lot of cover for small, fast ships such as missile gunboats and smaller. ”

        So why did they suddenly change and are deliberating on cutting or eliminating the number of their Skjolds?

        ” Same goes for Denmark and Croatia, and to a lesser extent, Germany (any attack on Germany though the Baltic Sea will mean combat near or among Denmark islands). And due to their fast speed and agility, FACs and missile gunboats can be used for harassing attacks even in the open sea.”

        And yet both Denmark and Germany are cutting their forces of small craft and replacing them with ever bigger ships. Denmark in particular quite clearly shows that there must be an objective quality in attaining a larger vessel since with the procurement of their Absalon and Iver Huitfeldt classes it has became obvious that they prefer size over military-grade technologies.

        Also what sea states are unsafe for FAC operations and what is the radius of such harassment? What possibly can be the mission endurance for such craft?

        “By comparing it to actual conventional carriers.”

        So you’re saying that you found out the price of a conventional carrier, adjusted it for inflation and assumed that’s what the ship is going to cost today? If you based your estimation on – say – French “Foch” then it means that you’d get a “Foch” in 2015. I recommend writing the French Navy to find out why they wouldn’t just copy their previous design.

        “Base model plus safety margin due to design and technological differences. And said base model displaces some 10% more.”

        And how do you estimate the margin. How can you be sure which technological differences will cost how much?

        “Japanese Izumo also costs 1,14 billion USD at 20.000 t as well.”

        Izumo can carry a single squadron of aircraft and can operate only helicopters or VTOL planes.
        Oh, by the way do you know what operational difficulty is involved with such design? How many of what aircraft can be serviced, how many can take off, land etc?

        “I used a figure from an earlier article. Not sure if it is correct anymore.”

        Article on what? In what context?

        “Standard peacetime cost.”

        There is no such thing. What does that even mean? I am asking specifically – can you argue with an attempt at hard data (obviously an attempt since we’re all speculating here) at: per sortie, per day of operations, per mile travelled – cost? Can you include the data for operating with small and large escort and with and without (if its at all capable) extra supply ships?

        “Nimitz typically carries no more than 50 aircraft. If all aircraft are replaced by F-18Cs, and it is loaded to capacity, it can carry up to 130 aircraft – but these are limited to fleet defense and some limited maritime strike.”

        But in wartime it can carry more. Your design will carry just 36 aricraft, period. At the same time if you decide to carry less during peacetime maritime patrol duties then suddenly you have a whole bunch of ac’s with 18 aircraft on board.

        55 of them….

        “Yeah, really. What makes you think so, besides wishful thinking?”

        For example knowing first-hand accounts of large international tenders for aircraft…

        “Proportion of what? Do you want direct operating cost, or total operating cost? Full number of hours in the air, peactime or wartime? FLX should have 6.000 hour airframe lifetime, so 6.000 * 4.600 = 28 million USD in direct operating cost, which is 65% of aircraft flyaway price.”

        What constitutes that 4600 (USD?) per hour figure. Because let me tell you right there and now that it’s not all the cost of operating the aircraft.

        We’re talking here not hypothetical comparisons between the cost of an hour of flight but the cost of adding 50% aircraft into service in general.
        And you are not accounting for the cost of logistics, infrastructure, personnel, necessary training, munitions expenditures etc. You pick a single non-representative figure and go with it all happy. When you want to shower yourself after a day of hard physical labour do you also just brush your teeth and ignore the rest?

        “These being? Geopolitical and strategic realities change, you can’t change fleet composition every ten years. Only constant “reality” is that Europe is at geographical crossroads of kinds, with Africa, Middle East and Russia at its borders, which means that there will be conflicts in and around Europe. That’s it.”

        So…. you don’t know 🙂

        Ok, let’s play: what are the principal geopolitical and strategic determinants of naval doctrine for….hmmm… Denmark.

        That will help you answer one of my other questions:

        – how a small craft will get into the “dark red” zone and sustain prolonged operations.
        – how a typical anti-piracy patrol and intercept works
        – what is the reason for lack of navies for the Baltic states
        – what is the non-economic reason for elimination of small craft and submarines form Danish navy
        – how do you provide basic escort for your “revolutionary” ACs

        Which you still haven’t answered.

        • “From where to where? Can you do me a favour, open a map of Europe and tell me which country is going to send naval forces and supply ships? Also try to indicate where such operations could occur. ”
          “And how are the submarines going to conduct maritime patrol, escort convoys, provide air defence for amphibious operations? If you are at all interested in the much more relevant Asia-Pacific region you’ll find that navies are about the only branch which is used on a regular basis during peacetime as policy or influence enforcing tool. How do you do that with a submarine?”

          You are goalshifting now:
          “What you describe in your proposition betrays fundamental misunderstanding of the reality of those navies. What would Royal Navy do with 30-something FAC? What would France do with so many aircraft carriers? You realize that there was a REASON why Denmark cut all of their submarines and small craft? Why do all the Baltic states have no navies in your proposal. Why do all the countries have identical ships despite different requirements? The Mediterranean is different from the North Sea which is different from the Baltic which is different from the Adriatic which is different from…”
          “No do explain: what goals are to be achieved by the numerous (30+) fast attack craft of Royal Navy or French Navy? Because clearly you haven’t bothered to read the outlines of their maritime security strategy.”

          First it was solely about Europe, now it is about “more relvant” Pacific…

          But to answer to your question, any direct attack on Europe is unlikely. If it happens, only country which could possibly carry it out is Russia, which means that most operations would be in the North Sea and near Norway, as well as in Baltic Sea and Black Sea. Baltic Sea is ideal for FACs, and all are excellent for conventional submarines.

          Maritime patrol, escort etc. will be done by surface ships – carriers, frigates and smaller, depending on circumstances. That is one of reasons why I included so many FACs and corvettes.

          “So why did they suddenly change and are deliberating on cutting or eliminating the number of their Skjolds?”
          “And yet both Denmark and Germany are cutting their forces of small craft and replacing them with ever bigger ships. Denmark in particular quite clearly shows that there must be an objective quality in attaining a larger vessel since with the procurement of their Absalon and Iver Huitfeldt classes it has became obvious that they prefer size over military-grade technologies.”

          Ask them. If you want speculation, it is because larger ships allow for longer deployment times and they want to be self-sufficient instead of relying on bases.

          “Also what sea states are unsafe for FAC operations and what is the radius of such harassment? What possibly can be the mission endurance for such craft?”

          Depends on design. Hamina class has range of 930 km. Kralj class has range of 3.100 km, albeit likely at slower speed.

          “There is no such thing.”

          There is over-the-year average in context of peacetime missions. Just like you have figures for fighter aircraft operating cost, which also vary by actual usage.

          “I am asking specifically – can you argue with an attempt at hard data (obviously an attempt since we’re all speculating here) at: per sortie, per day of operations, per mile travelled – cost? Can you include the data for operating with small and large escort and with and without (if its at all capable) extra supply ships?”

          I could try, if I cared enough and had time and data about other conventional carriers for comparison (which probably can be found) and ships.

          “But in wartime it can carry more.”

          As I said – up to 130. No more than that.

          “At the same time if you decide to carry less during peacetime maritime patrol duties then suddenly you have a whole bunch of ac’s with 18 aircraft on board.
          55 of them….”

          And if one is sunk, I loose 18-36 aircraft. If a Nimitz is sunk, I lose 50-130 aircraft.

          “For example knowing first-hand accounts of large international tenders for aircraft…”

          Which include far more than just aircraft procurement. There is also procurement of support systems (one of reasons why I used already existing technology as much as possible), weapons procurement (which is immaterial for my proposals since they can use already existing weapons, so no need for procuring new weapons), training, technology transfer… all these costs you’ll get with the F-35, or any new platform, which will have to get procured anyway. There are also taxes, bureocratic expenses etc. which you do not get with domestically-produced aircraft.

          “What constitutes that 4600 (USD?) per hour figure. Because let me tell you right there and now that it’s not all the cost of operating the aircraft.”

          *Direct* operating cost. Fuel, aircraft maintenance…

          “We’re talking here not hypothetical comparisons between the cost of an hour of flight but the cost of adding 50% aircraft into service in general.”

          Which includes quite few unknowns. How many spare parts do you want (a complete aircraft worth per active fighter, two aircraft worth…), rate of introduction etc.. And you’ll get the same with any new fighter… even worse than with FLX in fact, as 1) FLX uses mostly off-the-shelf components and 2) it is far simpler design than most alternatives. Same goes for other aircraft design concepts I made.

          “So…. you don’t know :)”

          And there is no way for anyone to know, not for more than next few years anyway.

          “– how a small craft will get into the “dark red” zone and sustain prolonged operations.”

          I guess you never heard about supply ships and on-sea resupply.

          “– how a typical anti-piracy patrol and intercept works”

          According to US Navy, you send few-billion-USD destroyers after a 25-foot-inflatible once said inflatible is detected by patrol aircraft. Hardly an optimal choice. Typical operation however involves boarding suspected pirate vessels.

          And most countries that deployed ships to Somalia deployed frigates or patrol vessels, excepting countries which do not have frigates to begin with.

          “– how do you provide basic escort for your “revolutionary” ACs”

          Basic escort being? Carriers in good part escort themselves, with proper aircraft and tools on board. For what they cannot do, there are frigates.

      • “You are goalshifting now:”

        No I am not. I am using your “Germany in Pearl Harbour” vivid example to illustrate something. You are engaging in rhetoric tricks….

        “First it was solely about Europe, now it is about “more relvant” Pacific…”

        …and non-sequitur imagined arguments – there’s nothing in the above quote about Pacific. 🙂

        In both cases you are avoiding answering the questions. 🙂

        “But to answer to your question, any direct attack on Europe is unlikely. If it happens, only country which could possibly carry it out is Russia, which means that most operations would be in the North Sea and near Norway, as well as in Baltic Sea and Black Sea. Baltic Sea is ideal for FACs, and all are excellent for conventional submarines.”

        You clearly do not understand even the basics of current threats in Europe. 🙂

        “Maritime patrol, escort etc. will be done by surface ships – carriers, frigates and smaller, depending on circumstances. That is one of reasons why I included so many FACs and corvettes.”

        You clearly do not understand what is necessary for such missions 🙂

        “Ask them. If you want speculation, it is because larger ships allow for longer deployment times and they want to be self-sufficient instead of relying on bases.”

        So you are saying you don’t know 🙂 And your speculation is wrong too 🙂

        “Depends on design. Hamina class has range of 930 km. Kralj class has range of 3.100 km, albeit likely at slower speed.”

        You don’t understand mission endurance either….

        “There is over-the-year average in context of peacetime missions. Just like you have figures for fighter aircraft operating cost, which also vary by actual usage.”

        That’s a general average for a specific set of missions in a year. Neither of those missions can be given over to your designs which is why I am asking about figures which are different, more useful derivatives of the general picture. Aaaaaand you don’t have them 🙂

        “I could try, if I cared enough and had time and data about other conventional carriers for comparison (which probably can be found) and ships.”

        Perhaps you should because then – provided you did it honestly – the painfully obvious shortcomings of your amateurish “analyses” would come to light fairly quickly

        “*Direct* operating cost. Fuel, aircraft maintenance…”

        Per flight. Now. When aircraft become autonomous weapon systems not requiring extensive infrastructure then it will become relevant during proposals of reform which change the size of the force by factor of 2 or 3…. or more. Once again your figures are taken from current operational profile and put into a completely wrong context.

        You don’t understand economics do you… ?

        “Which includes quite few unknowns. How many spare parts do you want (a complete aircraft worth per active fighter, two aircraft worth…), rate of introduction etc.. And you’ll get the same with any new fighter… even worse than with FLX in fact, as 1) FLX uses mostly off-the-shelf components and 2) it is far simpler design than most alternatives. Same goes for other aircraft design concepts I made.

        You don’t understand logistics either… 🙂 I am asking you about logistics here. Do you know what is necessary to run an air force base with two squadrons of aircraft?

        “And there is no way for anyone to know, not for more than next few years anyway.”

        But it’s right there in national defence strategy white papers, general outlines, intelligence analyses and reports…. 🙂

        “I guess you never heard about supply ships and on-sea resupply.”

        I guess you haven’t either 🙂 Something as crucial for basic operations of your stripped-down fleets MUST be included as part of the navy and in sufficient amounts and with proper technologies which allow for replenishment at sea. Where are they? How much would it cost to operate such vessels. What risk would it pose to put all necessary resources on a separate vessel which is an easy target for the enemy?

        “According to US Navy, you send few-billion-USD destroyers after a 25-foot-inflatible once said inflatible is detected by patrol aircraft. Hardly an optimal choice. Typical operation however involves boarding suspected pirate vessels.

        Yeah…that’s the picture your average media outlet (where people just slightly less competent than you typically work) will give you. You have no idea about the necessary practical details, haven’t you? 🙂

        “And most countries that deployed ships to Somalia deployed frigates or patrol vessels, excepting countries which do not have frigates to begin with.”

        But you want to send FACs? 🙂 Do you know who sent FACs there and why?

        “Basic escort being? Carriers in good part escort themselves, with proper aircraft and tools on board. For what they cannot do, there are frigates.”

        …. oh my god…

        You are totally clueless aren’t you? A silly person obsessing about “realities” of computer games, fidgeting with numbers and statistics which are like apples and oranges in everyday practice, without elementary understanding what the real world really is like, disregarding economics, geopolitics, and the (annoying) realities of politics 🙂

        How about you get out into the real world Mr.Analyst. I seriously hope nobody pays for your “advice” because – at least as far as naval matters are concerned – it is total RUBBISH. You can’t even get to even understanding the questions I am asking of you. I ask about one thing and you start talking about something else – which betrays your fundamental misunderstanding of the issues involved. You are like a small child in the fog!

        You are – I am sorry to say that – an INCOMPETENT DELUDED AMATEUR who doesn’t think it warrants learning about the problem first before going on to “addressing it”. There is NOTHING in your blog that actually indicates that you understand the very basics of naval operatons. I bookmarked your blog because I expected some enthusiast doing somewhat meaningful calculations on air tactics but this is …

        this is not even hilarious. This is downright pathetic! But I guess anyone can be an expert on the Internet…. bless your heart my son!

        With blessings.
        Pope Francis.

        • “No I am not. I am using your “Germany in Pearl Harbour” vivid example to illustrate something. You are engaging in rhetoric tricks….”

          No, you are. I made it clear that I was talking about direct attack on said countries:
          “If you are asking about direct attack on said countries”
          and you said this:
          “If you are at all interested in the much more relevant Asia-Pacific region you’ll find that navies are about the only branch which is used on a regular basis during peacetime as policy or influence enforcing tool. How do you do that with a submarine?”

          In other words, you completely ignored everything I said. First, you ignored that I was discussing wartime, second you ignored that I was discussing European waters. There is no reason for any European country to send anything more than absolutely meager forces into Pacific unless there is a war going on. Submarine is a tool for war, not peacetime law enforcement, and if World War III with China does break out (as some Conservatives hope), most important ships Europe could send to Pacific are submarines. Anything else will get sunk fairly quickly. But wether there is World War III or simply German ships going on peacekeeping missions from Pearl Harbor or French Polynesia, common logistics will make things easier. Even if it is peacekeeping in Malaysia, it is still easier to get supplies from Polynesia or Guam than to ship them from Europe or establish a supply depot specifically for one’s own ships (which will still require shipping parts and supplies from Europe). There is also an issue of repairs, regular maintenance etc.

          “You clearly do not understand even the basics of current threats in Europe. :)”

          None of current threats are conventional, so there is little use for navies as opposed to Coast Guard. Main threats are terrorism and mass immigration, both mostly thanks to US-sponsored wars and Arab Spring. But that doesn’t mean Europe should sit on laurels. Only potential conventional threat is Russia, which always focused on submarine force more than NATO did, but that war is unlikely due to European dependance on Russian oil.

          “You clearly do not understand what is necessary for such missions :)”
          “So you are saying you don’t know 🙂 And your speculation is wrong too :)”

          If you think you do, explain it. But it is easy to question people about things you yourself don’t understand.

          “Neither of those missions can be given over to your designs”

          Reason for that being?

          “Perhaps you should because then – provided you did it honestly – the painfully obvious shortcomings of your amateurish “analyses” would come to light fairly quickly”

          Yeah, numerical cherrypicking really proves concept being incorrect…

          “Per flight. Now. When aircraft become autonomous weapon systems not requiring extensive infrastructure then it will become relevant during proposals of reform which change the size of the force by factor of 2 or 3…. or more. Once again your figures are taken from current operational profile and put into a completely wrong context.”

          And did you maybe miss the part about FLX having half as many engines as F-18C and being about half the size (far less than half when compared to F-18E)? Or ALX being (much) smaller A-10? That automatically means that despite increase in size of force, change in logistical infrastructure will be far smaller due to aircraft themselves having far smaller logistical footprint than the aircraft being replaced.

          “You don’t understand logistics either… 🙂 I am asking you about logistics here. Do you know what is necessary to run an air force base with two squadrons of aircraft?”

          What, you want a list? Or simply how many trucks / transport aircraft will take to transport all necessary personnel, spare parts, fuel, weapons… to the base.

          “But it’s right there in national defence strategy white papers, general outlines, intelligence analyses and reports…. :)”

          And all of it is a speculation, which is just as often proven utterly wrong. In 1989., CIA believed that USSR is nowhere close to collapsing – and that is just one such example.

          “Something as crucial for basic operations of your stripped-down fleets MUST be included as part of the navy and in sufficient amounts and with proper technologies which allow for replenishment at sea. Where are they? How much would it cost to operate such vessels. What risk would it pose to put all necessary resources on a separate vessel which is an easy target for the enemy?”

          That part won’t go away regardless of wether you’re using nuclear or conventional carriers, destroyers or fast attack craft. It will be more dangerous in latter case as FACs don’t have so long range, but it is necessary unless you are going to abandon entire area of operations and keep fleet mostly useless in open ocean. Destroyer in littoral waters is a sitting duck for anything, not to mention danger of getting stuck on a reef somewhere. And same logistical organization necessary to support one destroyer can support several FACs, only additional thing required is a forward base, which can be camouflaged somewhere on an island if actual experiences with torpedo boats in WWII are any indication.

          “Yeah…that’s the picture your average media outlet”

          Sorry, but that information doesn’t come from “average media outlet”, so try again.

          “You are totally clueless aren’t you? A silly person obsessing about “realities” of computer games, fidgeting with numbers and statistics which are like apples and oranges in everyday practice, without elementary understanding what the real world really is like, disregarding economics, geopolitics, and the (annoying) realities of politics :)”

          Just for your information, I don’t even play computer games as a rule. And you have no clue about any of the questions you asked anyway, but unlike me, you have no clue about historical usage of navy and its resources either. As for geopolitics and politics, these change too quickly to be basing navy solely on current situation, seeing how long it takes to rebuild a navy.

          “There is NOTHING in your blog that actually indicates that you understand the very basics of naval operatons.”

          I understand what is wrong with current US force structure in context of tasks it is carrying out and threats it is likely to face. I never pretended to be an expert on naval logistics.

    • Other blog accidentally relinked me to your site so I decided I might as well answer the last one before I leave.

      “I made it clear that I was talking about direct attack on said countries”

      Picard 578, you are a typical geek-expert. You do make several good points about aerial warfare, although you seem to rely on dry datasets too much. But you do not understand the technical side of land operations nor land warfare as I could guess from your proposals regarding US Army but most of all you have absolutely no understanding of naval operations. In short – you are a narrowly specialized person who not only doesn’t understand the specificity of other specializations but most importantly you are lacking the general view and understanding of things. You are thoroughly unable to conceive of a realistic doctrine for one country or another and completely lack the basic understanding of economics of warfare. Aerial, land and naval warfare differ very much. They respond to very different threats even under direct attack. You do not “attack countries” from the sea unless you are talking about an amphibious operation or the very non-representative bombing campaigns from aircraft carriers which USN touts as “war” nowadays. Every country has its own unique set of threats and requirements and nowhere it is better seen than in Europe. As a European you should know that best…

      Aerial warfare has that advantage that it can be treated in universal terms although that is also a highly theoretical exercise devoid of any grounding in real capability or strategic conditions which make some options untenable and others unaffordable. However it is theoretically possible to conceive of such exercise and even if its inapplicable it serves an instructive purposes. Navy however is permanently tied to both geography and doctrine and cannot be resolved the same way as you do it with air force. It is just what it is and unless you have a major war going on there is no way for a sustainable approach (economically) to large fleets for practical, logistical and economic (financial) reasons. I also don’t think you understand the relationship between capability and cost in naval matters as it is very different from the issues aircraft deal with. And land warfare falls somewhere in the middle between naval and aerial combat but I do not want to comment on that here.

      Even if taking “direct attack” into account every country has a different set of priorities and for different countries “direct attack” will mean different things. Countries do not exist on water but on land and what you do on the seas depends on what country is attacked, for what purpose, in what way and to what end.

      That is the doctrinal difference between naval, aerial and land warfare. Land warfare is about affecting resources on land through control of land. Also land warfare and only land warfare wins classic wars. Naval warfare is about many things but control of sea is just one of them. It is however an independent type of warfare in its own right. Aerial warfare is about supporting naval and land operations and never extends beyond SUPPORTING roles even if all the action takes place in the sky. It is either aerial warfare over land or aerial warfare over sea. And that’s why you CAN do with aerial warfare what you are doing. Not with the navy.

      GET IT INTO YOUR HEAD. Or whatever you write here will be as worthless and detached from reality as that proposal of yours.

      “Reason for that being?”

      Because you don’t understand what naval operations are like, what their constraints and requirements are you designed ships like aircraft. And then you expect your large and small and stealthy aircraft to do a job that requires a ship, a tank, a platoon of infantry, artillery…. And because you don’t see the fundamental differences between those units – in how they operate, what their goals are – you can’t conceive of your error. And that doesn’t even touch upon the fact that naval warfare is rarely “direct attack on a country”. Two whole layers of erroneous thinking.

      “And did you maybe miss the part about FLX having half as many engines as F-18C and being about half the size (far less than half when compared to F-18E)? Or ALX being (much) smaller A-10? That automatically means that despite increase in size of force, change in logistical infrastructure will be far smaller due to aircraft themselves having far smaller logistical footprint than the aircraft being replaced.”

      You have no clue what logistics are like do you? Reducing the number of engines indeed reduces the amount of worktime necessary but it isn’t in a 1-1 proportion. As for airframes – you can have a smaller airframe which requires more work than a large one.Do you need examples or can you think of some yourself….

      “What, you want a list? Or simply how many trucks / transport aircraft will take to transport all necessary personnel, spare parts, fuel, weapons… to the base.”

      Yes, that would be a good start. Then put pricetags on everything and try to run a budget. Maybe then your eyes will open. But I am guess they won’t because you strike me as one of those “know-it-all” people who really don’t know much.

      “And all of it is a speculation, which is just as often proven utterly wrong. In 1989., CIA believed that USSR is nowhere close to collapsing – and that is just one such example.”

      Are you stupid or just mentally handicapped? Or just really interested in listening to yourself? If a government sets out a policy then the navy enacts said policy. It is not about predicting threats but about what role the navy will play in the general picture. And as far as your example goes it is irrelevant because the only thing that changed was the size and readiness of militaries in Europe – not their shape. That didn’t even come after the explosion of anti-terrorist hysteria following 9/11. Which you would know if you bothered to actually read on the subject.

      “That part won’t go away regardless of wether you’re using nuclear or conventional carriers, destroyers or fast attack craft. It will be more dangerous in latter case as FACs don’t have so long range, but it is necessary unless you are going to abandon entire area of operations and keep fleet mostly useless in open ocean. Destroyer in littoral waters is a sitting duck for anything, not to mention danger of getting stuck on a reef somewhere.And same logistical organization necessary to support one destroyer can support several FACs, only additional thing required is a forward base, which can be camouflaged somewhere on an island if actual experiences with torpedo boats in WWII are any indication.”

      There’s so many things wrong with this paragraph that I don’t know where to begin. You are so full of himself that you can’t conceive of things such as protection of maritime traffic during wartime or the idea that a FAC can’t venture further into the sea because of its SIZE. You don’t understand that certain naval systems require SIZE – like long-range high-power radars, towed array sonars. You don’t understand that sea is a hostile environment – unlike the land or the airspace over land – and small ships can be destroyed more easily with fewer munitions which is a problem since resupply at sea is a logistical nightmare. You don’t understand that if a FAC has endurance of 30 days then it means that this is the amount of supplies it can take and not that the crew can actually manage a 30 day long-range mission. You don’t fucking understand ANYTHING about the issue your are writing on.

      Let alone the fact that sometimes to defend you have to attack… and then your whole idea sucks right at the very start.

      “And you have no clue about any of the questions you asked anyway, but unlike me, you have no clue about historical usage of navy and its resources either. As for geopolitics and politics, these change too quickly to be basing navy solely on current situation, seeing how long it takes to rebuild a navy.”

      Correction. YOU have absolutely no clue about any of the questions I asked you about and YOU also have absolutely no fucking idea about historical usage of the navy and YOU have no clue what you are talking about GEOPOLITICS.
      You don’t even understand the TERM you complete fucking moron otherwise you would not spew something as stupid as “changes too quickly”.

      “I understand what is wrong with current US force structure in context of tasks it is carrying out and threats it is likely to face. I never pretended to be an expert on naval logistics.”

      No you don’t. You are a moron who thinks that every problem with the world can be solved with a hammer just because you happen to have one. And logistics determines all aspects of warfare. If you don’t understand naval logistics AS YOU JUST SAID then you can’t hope to devise a viable naval strategy. Just as if you didn’t understand maths you could never hope to become a decent engineer or physicist or if you didn’t understand chemisty, biology and anatomy you couldn’t hope to become a decent medical professional.

      And what’s worst about you is not that you are ignorant but that you are deliberately and willfully rejecting any new knowledge especially if it contradicts your views or opinions. You don’t want to have always the correct understanding of the problem – you just want to be right. And that doesn’t require learning – it just needs denial of reality.

      It’s not the errors or lack of expertise but the ATTITUDE that is your biggest problem. You are like the worst creationist. Actually…a flat-earther is a better comparison.

      • “You do not “attack countries” from the sea unless you are talking about an amphibious operation or the very non-representative bombing campaigns from aircraft carriers which USN touts as “war” nowadays.”

        And amphibious ops are one of more important aspects of naval warfare, as humans live on land. Only things more important than that are escorting your own and intercepting enemy supply ships. Fleet-to-fleet actions are an exception, not a rule, especially between major surface combatants.

        “It is just what it is and unless you have a major war going on there is no way for a sustainable approach (economically) to large fleets for practical, logistical and economic (financial) reasons.”

        Problem is that, just like with aircraft, there is no way for modern ships to be built quickly enough to build up a fleet during the war. Unless you’re talking about converting civilian ships, which brings entire set of problems by itself. That being said, you are correct that large fleets are impractical – but so are very small fleets of highly “capable” ships.

        “I also don’t think you understand the relationship between capability and cost in naval matters as it is very different from the issues aircraft deal with.”

        Depends. I’m well aware that AIP submarines cannot completely replace nuclear submarines, or vice-versa. But I don’t see any need for 1B USD do-it-all destroyers escorting multi-billion USD nuclear carriers. Too many eggs in too few baskets, and world is a large place; so no matter how capable your weapons are, if you lack appropriate numbers, they are irrelevant. Plus, control of the sea does not mean “control of the open ocean only”, in fact controlling the open ocean is among the less relevant tasks.

        “Also land warfare and only land warfare wins classic wars.”

        Agreed.

        “You have no clue what logistics are like do you? Reducing the number of engines indeed reduces the amount of worktime necessary but it isn’t in a 1-1 proportion. As for airframes – you can have a smaller airframe which requires more work than a large one.Do you need examples or can you think of some yourself….”

        That depends on the way it is designed. But with a properly designed airframe, smaller airframe will indeed require less maintenance. And you can’t go comparing MiG-21 with Gripen.

        “If a government sets out a policy then the navy enacts said policy. It is not about predicting threats but about what role the navy will play in the general picture.”

        That is apparently not the case in United States. There, the entire discussion revolves around possible threats, while roles that US Navy actually is doing on day-to-day basis, and which require capabilities significantly different from what US Navy has right now, are ignored. And situation is apparently not too different in rest of the NATO. Just one example: in US Navy, anti-mine warfare is ignored to such an extent that lack of mine sweeping capabilities meant that in Gulf War US Marines could not embark from their ships in time, because mines could not be cleared.

        “maritime traffic during wartime or the idea that a FAC can’t venture further into the sea because of its SIZE.”

        Most important operations are always near the land, and that is where FACs are necessary. Open ocean is for carriers, frigates and nuclear submarines. Problem would be in getting them to the area of operations, but it is not impossible.

        “and small ships can be destroyed more easily with fewer munitions which is a problem since resupply at sea is a logistical nightmare.”

        Smaller ships are also less likely to get hit. And even if we are talking supercarriers, one torpedo hit will take it out of the action. It is submarines which are the greatest danger to surface ships. Missile ships are a far smaller danger.

        “It’s not the errors or lack of expertise but the ATTITUDE that is your biggest problem. You are like the worst creationist. Actually…a flat-earther is a better comparison.”

        Same to you. Looks like both of us are focusing on one half of the problem. But you are completely refusing to even try and understand my position.

      • “Looks like both of us are focusing on one half of the problem. But you are completely refusing to even try and understand my position.”

        No we are not. I haven’t even begun to address the issues USNavy and USDoD have in general with their doctrine, procurement and future plans because your proposal says “NATO navies proposal” and lists all NATO countries with their subsequent navies planned in the most ignorant way possible.

        I drew conclusions from your proposal and decided that it would make no sense to engage in a meaningful discussion until you acknowledged your utter lack of understanding and apparently some fundamental competence regarding the issue.

        Case in point is the example of Denmark which since the dissolution of the Warsaw Pact and USSR and subsequent accesion of Poland and the Baltic States to NATO and the EU along with the growing cooperation between NATO and Sweden and Finland and the formation of the Nordic battlegroup simply concluded that the Cold War-era threat of aerial and amphibious assault on its territory (something that the WP-era Polish navy was designated to do) is no longer a problem. With that they focused on protecting their long-term interests overseas ( look up Danish overseas territories and especially their EEZ ) and their major economic interests among which international shipping plays an important role. That’s why their current navy is the way it is and it is one of the most economically efficient and best planned reforms I can think of – from the 1997 white paper on defence, through the revisions (like cancelling the replacement for their submarines) to the nearing completion of the whole program. Similar plans can be applied to other NATO countries and there indeed is a lot of room for improvement – even assuming arbitrary changes to policy – but it is nowhere near the insane proposal you presented.

        To understand why Denmark succeeded where you fail miserably you would have to learn the basics of geopolitics, politics, economics (three different disciplines of which at least two – geopolitics and economics you have evidently a poor grasp of) and naval logistics which you admitted to not understanding.

        Oh and a single Iver Huitfeldt frigate cost only 325mln USD so all three cost less than one billion US Dollars – not $2.1bn as you list it. You got the price for Absalon vessels right, I have no idea why you misquoted the others or why you didn’t account for inflation for Thetis ships.

        • Entire point behind my proposal is making NATO a unified force, whereas you are still focusing exclusively on needs of individual countries (which change over time BTW, and often in shorter time than it takes for a lifetime of a ship to expire). I know it is never going to happen, for the same reason why US and Europe don’t have a single fighter aircraft project, but it is a case study.

          As for three disciplines you have listed, I never studied geopolitics, but I studied politics (though I focused mostly on internal politics of countries) and I apparently understand economics better than many Western economists (those of neoliberal current, at least, seeing as how they completely failed to predict economic crisis – or at least, they didn’t want to admit that it will happen).

          US Navy and US DoD are worst off among NATO examples, but most of the same problems are present in other NATO countries to greater or lesser extent.

      • There’s no point to your proposal. Someone who doesn’t understand the issue can’t propose anything else than a waste of time.

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