Excusing the “Do Nothing Navy”
You have to give them credit. The Custodian over at Galrahn’s blog does a superior job at justifying why its OK for the Navy to build warships not meant to fight, it is astounding! The reasons he gives are priceless and almost makes you forget there is a War on Terror on:
There has been no shortage of U.S. military deployments. While it is true that there is only one case where an actual forced entry might have been plausible – the 2003 invasion of Iraq – it is also true that there are at least two cases where the capability might have been called into play had circumstances turned out differently.
Wow, that was really close! After listing about 2 dozen US Military deployments after 1992, he contends there was at least 2 occasions where our multi-billion dollar amphibious fleet could actually have been used! That’s really getting your money’s worth right? And wait there’s more:
But it appears on first glance that while a full amphibious assault has not been seriously envisioned since the decoy maneuvers of the first Gulf War, there have been numerous potential situations where an amphibious capability and associated fire support have been applicable even if not applied.
Well I convinced that we aren’t wasting our money, aren’t you? But the best is yet to come:
I would argue that having a capability in order to not use it, after all, is in no way a strange position for U.S. armed forces.
Hmmmm…So its OK to spend vasts sums to produce an amphibious fleet we never use for what its built for, but we can’t seem to find the resources to combat piracy? Well, I must admit not actually using military equipment would solve the little wear and tear problems the Army is suffering with its tanks and other vehicles in Iraq. Maybe that’s why the USAF wants to build fighters it won’t use in the Middle East wars, so it wouldn’t suffer attrition problems like its older warplanes have endured on the front lines.
The article itself isn’t bad where it discusses naval surface fire support (NSFS), except with the amphibious portion that arises, the attempts to explain its continued existence in a new era of seapower becomes ever more ludicrous. Much like many tried to justify the continued existence of battleships after Pearl Harbor (and some to this day!), in a environment of ever tightening defense budgets, continuing to fund warships or any platform which is irrelevant to the threats we now face is simply insane.