Thursday, November 21, 2019

US Navy accepted delivery of its third Expeditionary Sea Base (ESB) ship, USNS Miguel Keith (ESB 5)

Story here.

I consider these ships to be an illustration of how "old" procurement clashes with new realities.

I've personally been calling for the ESB's to be paired along with MEU's to make them Reinforced.

A Reinforced MEU composed of a "Light Carrier", LHD, LPD, LX(R) x 2, and maybe an ESB augmented with increased artillery/ISR/anti-ship missiles and whatever else you want to throw into the mix would be a powerful and credible force entering the super power contest era we're in.

Instead we're going further down the rabbit hole of small, throw away (read that to mean expendable) ships when we know for a fact that we are NOT BUILT to have such a force!

Can you imagine the reaction of the Mothers Of America when they realize that their sons and GASP daughters are being placed on ships that the US Navy/Marine Corps considers "risk worthy"?

Someone isn't thinking this thru.

Additionally widely dispersed fleets are a nightmare to protect.  Ask the convoy sailors that tried the dispersed thing when the wolfpacks came calling.

With a small force (and trust me...we are down the road of a small force across the board), you can't afford to play cavalier games with it.


A great idea if we were only concerned with hunting terrorists.  The game has changed and we need to change our idea of using them.

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