The Navy’s surface warfare community has embraced a new strategy for assuring sea control in the future that focuses on dispersing fleet assets rather than concentrating them. It is called “distributed lethality,” and it is designed to greatly complicate the targeting challenge adversaries face by using vast expanses of ocean to conceal and deceive. Sea control is crucial to facilitating foreign access, deterrence of aggression, power projection and maritime security, but in the current threat environment the surface fleet needs to adapt its tactics, talent, training and warfighting tools to cope with changed circumstances. In particular, surface combatants need more offensive reach and better battlespace awareness. Vice Admiral Thomas Rowden, commander of the surface fleet, signed out a document in December detailing the logic of distributed lethality. I have written a commentary for Forbes here.
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