Skip to comments.HASC chair: Donít mothball the cruisers, upgrade them
Posted on 03/14/2012 8:46:38 PM PDT by sukhoi-30mki
HASC chair: Dont mothball the cruisers, upgrade them
House Armed Services Committee Chairman Rep. Buck McKeon said Wednesday he wants the Navy to keep the seven cruisers it has proposed decommissioning because the fleet needs the ships to reach their full lives.
He told an audience at the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library out in California that he would try to help save the ships that Secretary Panetta and other top leaders though not Navy leaders have basically characterized as worn out.
We will try to hold back cuts to the Navys cruiser force, he said, finding the money for our cruisers to undergo proper upgrades, instead of mothballing ships needed to sustain the shift to Asia, before those ships reach the end of their lifespan.
The surface Navy loves the cruiser and destroyer modernization it has begun with the early ships in the two classes, which gives crews nicer accommodations and brings the ships weapons, sensors and electronics up to the latest standards. But the yard work costs money and it sidelines warships for months that, as we keep hearing, are in high demand from combatant commanders.
McKeon did not detail what the Navy should give up to keep its cruisers, or go into many specifics on much else in his Reagan Library speech. The remarks werent really for the usual Washington eggheads by donning the mantle of Reagan, McKeon seemed to be aiming his call for support at a wider audience of conservatives outside the defense family.
To put it plainly, we need your help, he said. We need your help restoring the concept of the Reagan military. Just the name invokes the concept of strength and certitude. I need you to be advocates for the principles that President Reagan advocated. I need you to stand with our troops. I need you to reject government intrusion in our lives, and refocus this great Republic back to Constitutional obligations like providing for the common defense. These cuts can be stopped, averted, held off. But it requires you to be involved. To be vocal. To be strong. How can we call ourselves Reagan Republicans if we sit quietly by during the most systematic and catastrophic cuts to an institution that Reagan helped build?
The Reagan Challenge! Its the ultimate gauntlet for conservatives the final trump card. The question is, will it work? Can defense advocates drum up a popular groundswell to pressure Congress to deal with sequestration and the other thorny questions in the defense world, or is this subject just too wonky?
Dated upgrade plan
A couple of 5” guns on a cruiser is an insult. Also, where are the cruise missiles, AA missiles, and Aegis MGs, etc?
While we have a couple hundred extremely capable surface combatants, it's not enough.
These new Aegis units are as big as the Cruisers in question. And bad-ass.
But they can't be everywhere all the time.
Yes, keep these Cruisers and build 100 Frigates in the 3-4k ton class...with all the modern voodoo.
Those tunes are state of the art.
They don’t fit in Obama’s ‘green navy’.
It’s recently reported that currently deployed ships are running with burnt out light bulbs because commanders say they are too expensive to replace.
Obama refuses to fund the current military. How do you justify modernizing ships if currently up to date ships can’t keep lights on?
Light bulb or refurbished cruiser? What’s more important to our currently deployed sailors?
BTW, I hate the idea that they are decommissioning so many ships, but I have to think of the men and women we are sending into harms way.
Panetta thinks our soldier’s guns are worn out too.
Until I looked them up I didn’t realize these ships were built on a destroyer hull. One of them, the Lake Erie, was the ship that took out a satellite in orbit. With 122 missiles available for immediate launch, these ships are still an enemy’s nightmare.
That’s a lot of firepower in a relatively small package. That’s needed if we have to augment a carrier’s protective screen in a hurry.
Barky and the rest of his commie corksucking crew will not be happy until our armeds forces are as small as Canada’s. They really hate our country and want to see it defenseless.
I served in Vietnam in ‘68-’69-’70. I was on flight duty out of Danang. I can remember flying over the Battleship New Jersey as it was lobbing big shells at the NVN coast.
The Battleship New Jersey was mothballed years before that. Thankfully, it didn’t become a reef and it turned out that we decided we needed it again. The same is probably true with these carriers. Who knows what’s next with evil folk around the world?
You wanna see a real cruiser? Go to Boston area and look up the USS Salem, CA-139. Now that’s a real cruiser and the ONLY one of it’s kind/era still left. All other CA cruisers have been mothballed or scrapped. Sad!
Now that we have today’s missle fire power, unfortunately, we won’t be seeing ships of the “CA” class anymore.
Ex-Radioman 1st - USS Salem CA 139
- Admiral’s Staff (on board Salem)
Here’s a link to the USS Salem CA-139
The older CA and BB hulls were designed to withstand shell impacts. Thick, serious steel. Many modern anti-ship missiles would bounce off that armor plating.
Of course, there’s those pesky terminal-diving missiles, but that’s another story...
I have always wondered what a contractor outside the usual DoD/Navy sourcing gravy-train could do with an older platform. What the actual costs would be as opposed to the “cost-plus” costs that always seem to run into the billions.
Imagine replacing the 14” turrets with multiple railgun mounts...
I still can't understand why the Navy completely abandoned guns on cruisers. While I understand the need for missles, having more than a few 6in or 8 inch guns would give the ships additional options. It's easier to run out of missiles than it is to run out of shells. I understand the newer ships have the rapid fire 5 inchers, but IMHO one or two turrets is not enough. And frankly 5 inches is not big enough to hit a target on shore if someone needs fire support.
It’s the primacy of carriers that provides your answer. Naval gunfire support just doesn’t deliver the goods the way that aircraft delivered precision bombing does. The surface combatant escort ships are almost all geared towards three missions—ASW screening, AA protection for the carrier, or independent cruising, none of which heavily relies upon naval artillery.
The Salem in Venice. I was on that particular cruise at that time. We stopped there on more than one occasion. I remember the day we arrived as I was taking a test for advancement during the achoring process. Those were some really great ships and like you, I wonder why somone whould not have upgraded those vessels with more modern weaponry.
I realize the weight of the ship and armamount did use lots of fuel so may have been the justification to remove them from the list of assets.........too bad!