Friday, July 02, 2021

Berger's concept is falling apart before its even implemented...


I've warned about the unintended consequences of Berger's Folly...rather his jacked up Force Design.


Now the chickens are coming home to roost.

via Breaking Defense

The Navy will build the Light Amphibious Ships (LAWs) it wants, but there’s a trade-off. The number of large amphibious ships will decline by five to nine — 15% to 27%. Marines and others had expected that the LAWs would be added to the full number of large amphibious ships, not force a cut. The shift is good news for medium-sized shipbuilders who might build the LAWs, but it is bad news for Huntington Ingalls Industries (HII), which builds the large amphibious ships.

It’s also a warning to the Marine Corps: if you can’t explain why you want multibillion-dollar ships, then you probably won’t get them.


 For decades, the Navy and Marine Corps had a settled approach to amphibious ships and amphibious operations. The wartime requirement would set the total size of the fleet. However, that fleet was large enough to sustain a continuous forward presence for crisis response, humanitarian assistance, and exercises with allies and partners in three theaters―the Indo Pacific, the Middle East, and Europe. That construct is now shattered. The smaller fleet of large amphibious ships implies a reduced level of forward deployments. The LAWs are too small to fill in. (Even the 33-ship fleet was too small to meet all the requests of the regional commanders. That requires “close to 54” amphibious ships.)

The Navy and Marine Corps might argue that the day-to-day force demands are enough to justify the higher requirement for large amphibious ships. Services have justified elements of military force structure―most prominently, the carrier fleet―that way in the past. Gen. Berger recently seemed to contradict the shipbuilding plan by calling for “no fewer than 31 traditional amphibious ships: 10 LHD/LHAs and 21 LPFs.” (He also asked for 35 LAWs.) Nevertheless, seeking ships without a strong warfighting justification will be a tough sell.

The amphibious fleet is in an uncomfortable place, with no stated justification for its most expensive elements and strong conceptual support for its least expensive and least capable elements. The Biden administration may move in a different direction when it publishes the full long-term shipbuilding plan, but for now, the future of the amphibious fleet looks stormy indeed.


We've seen it over and over in the US military.  A complimentary capability evolves to be the primary.

Additionally Berger's concept is so freaking vague, flighty and basically based on the undefined definition of "competition" that law makers won't/don't understand it.

This is how you first break a great institution and then kill it.

This concept was supposed to make the Marine Corps relevant going into the future?  Tying ourselves to the Navy as Berger demands will just have us being bill payers for new warships.

Berger doesn't know it (perhaps he does) but he's imperiling the future of the Marine Corps.

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