Skip to content

Bring Back the Arsenal Ship

March 21, 2007

Those who criticize our much-smaller Post Cold War Navy, often overlook the fact that our fleet regularly deploys 10,000 missile launchers to sea, not to mention the new precision weapons carried by carrier aircraft. Back during the 1990’s, plans were to increase this unprecedented firepower by building new Arsenal Ships. These were lo-tech “missile barges” with the capacity to load up to 1000 missile weapons, plus a crew of about 50, at about the cost of an Arleigh Burke destroyer. Due to small budgets during the Clinton Era, this brilliant idea was shelved, though the idea recurs from time to time, including during the 2000 Election by then candidate George Bush.

Building new Arsenal Ships would currently save much money, especially when compared to the $3 billion price tag of the new Zumwalt DDX destroyers, of which only 2 has been funded so far. Ten Arsenal Ships would give us the equivalent firepower of our entire cruise missile firing surface and submarine fleet, at tremendous savings in crew complements and ship maintenance. Even with their entire missile complement of 1000, these 21st Century battleships would cost less than a new supercarrier and her air wing. Though the Big Navy advocates might howl over another reduction in hi-tech warships, the savings could go for large numbers of cheap patrol ships able to chase Al Qaeda pirates and drug smugglers into their shallow water haunts.

No comments yet

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: