I know I just posted something from Admiral Gary Roughead, but I couldn’t let this pass. Most regular visitors know I am against the traditional Navy shipbuilding strategy that “1 ship replaces 4” or you build only exquisite multimission ships which can do-everything-nothing-well. Then you get mediocrity at a gold plated price as the LCS (can also place the F-35 fighter in this category) has become. Listen to this apparent about-face from CNO Roughead via Reuters:
“If you can give me 20 ships that can do 80 percent of what four ships can do, I’ll go for the 20,” said Roughead, who became the Navy’s top uniformed officer in September 2007.
That is an eye-opening statement, if he really means it. Sadly, I am thinking he believes the new littoral combat ship will make this change. When I think of the quote from CDR Salamander saying “Never before has so much money brought so little capability from so few ships” I have my doubts the LCS will get us there, but it may be one small step in that direction.
Plus, it will have to be today’s captains, commanders, and lieutenants which will lead this agonizing change, since the Admiral and his generation of Cold Warriors still think in terms of going in hard, blowing everything up, and getting out fast. Let him ask the army how that strategy has paid off in our Middle East Wars.