While experts may differ as to the overall composition of the future U.S. Navy, they are nearly unanimous in their judgment that the Navy is too small to meet its current missions with the current number of ships. This means that the Navy also fails to meet the requirement set by the NSS for a military adequate to meet the global threats and challenges the nation confronts today. The 2018 National Defense Authorization Act states that “it shall be the policy of the United States to have available, as soon as practicable, not fewer than 355 battle force ships.” The key words in the SHIPS Act are “as soon as practicable.” One proven way of speeding up the procurement of new warships while simultaneously lowering their cost is to buy them in bulk. The Navy currently purchases several of its most important platforms in groups, either as multiyear procurements or block buys. It could do the same thing for nuclear-powered aircraft carriers. Initiating a block buy procurement for the next several aircraft carriers could help reduce the interval between construction starts, shorten the overall length of time to complete construction and save money. I have written on this topic for RealClearDefense here.
Find Archived Articles: