Bring Back the Arsenal Ship
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.