22 thoughts on “Star Trek And Battlestar Galactica”

  1. It’s actually not a bad article.

    The intended audience really isn’t the USN, they already know these problems (and others), though whether they acknowledge or act upon that knowledge is a different question.

    The real audience is the general populace who will, after reading this and with minor additional research, realize just how vulnerable the current USN is.

  2. I haven’t read the article, but several possibilities come to mind.

    1) Play Chinese lullabies to put the Chinese sailors to sleep the way Data did to the Borg invasion fleet.

    2) Have an American female sailor mate with a Chinese sailor to produce a hybrid baby that screws up the war’s whole plot, causing God to intervene in a desperate bid to try to salvage some semblance of a coherent story.

  3. Next, use Stargate for the Air Force. Use fiction to explain facts, so that some people can grasp the concept.

  4. I’ll see your BSG “33” and raise you an Arthur C. Clarke’s “Superiority”. The Navy leadership’s search for the ultimate transformational technology has lead us down the path of fewer, not-ready-for-prime-time hulls. Little Crappy Ship, Ford, and Zumwalt. The Navy has not been engaged in a multi-year naval campaign with a peer/near peer since WW2. How do you replace hulls on the bottom when your build cycle for a glorified corvette is a half decade?

    1. Don’t forget the Navy’s ever-shrinking air wings with planes less range and less capability. No more long-range A-6E strike bombers, no more S-3 Viking ASW aircraft (with a useful sea search and stand-off missile attack capability), no more dedicated air tankers (leaving only gas-guzzling F-18E/Fs with buddy tanks refueling other gas-guzzling SupeBrugs). No long range fighter-bomber like the F-14D let alone Super Tomcat 21. No, we’ve got Hornets, E-2D Hawkeyes AWACS, and C-2 cargo planes, and helos. But don’t tell Big Navy they’re screwed the pooch again and again on acquisitions. But we are working on the important stuff, like recruiting enough transgenders. And recognizing the best Hispanic engineer or Black engineer. We don’t really know who the best engineer may be, but since most are white, that’s the way to bet. And that’s what’s wrong with today’s Navy. Not enough diversity. ESPECIALLY IN CARRIER AIR WINGS! But that’s not the one Big Navy cares about. So genderqueer discos in the mission module bays of the welded-to-the-pier LCSs.

    2. Even in peacetime, there needs to be enough boats to go where we want them. They don’t all have to be cutting edge technology wise.

      Trump could get his 350 ship navy by commissioning the purchase or construction of something like container ships used for shipping. They could be outfitted in different ways depending on their mission and easily refitted if the mission changes.

      Throw a bunch of Patriot batteries, helicopters, F-35’s, rail guns, lasers, Marines, or whatever. There are a lot of possibilities.

      Sending aid to hurricane victims doesn’t require an aircraft carrier nor does ensuring we have a presence around the globe.

      1. The purpose of the navy is to kill people and break things. The fleet must me designed for maximum lethality and force protection.

  5. There is no need to get into Sci-Fi territory to explain these kinds of problems. One good example of ‘network-centric warfare’ is the submarine wolfpack technique the Nazis used in WWII. It delivered tremendous results…. until the Allies started triangulating the transmissions used to coordinate submarine attacks, eventually even deciphering the Enigma machine which was used to encrypt communications.
    There have been plenty of Chinese investments into ASAT and ways to target US carrier groups. Regardless of this any of the possible nation-state enemies of the US are basically a continent away. It’s non-viable to conduct an invasion of the US, it would make the Normandy landings seem like a picnic, and you can’t really win a war without putting boots in the ground. At most you can attempt to deny US intervention to achieve regional objectives which is what the Chinese have been trying to do.
    The US’s best bet is basically to install ABM systems to ring fence them in and increase the amount of ships in the USN to counter the Chinese naval buildup.

  6. If we’re actually worried about the threat from China (IMHO, we should be!), then why is what’s creating that threat given so little mention, anywhere?

    It’s their economy. There’s a whole lot of criticism from traditional conservatives regarding Trump’s stance on free trade with China, but it’s framed entirely in terms of its impact in the US economy. The inconvenient fact that China’s resulting economic boom is creating a superpower danger goes unmentioned.

    Frankly, even if imposing heavy tariffs on China turns out to be on the net bad for the US economy, I’d still favor it, due to the threat China poses, and the greater threat it will be in the future.

    1. Arizona, here are the problems. First, that trade is an avenue to introducing democracy into China and defusing the situation that way. Second, this approach would entail a great deal of human suffering throughout the world, not just in the US and China. Third, trade is the largest carrots we have for getting good behavior from China.

      Fourth, most of the threats that the US faces come not from China from ourselves (such as the ongoing disaster of military procurement, institutional hostility towards business and employment, or the lack of political will to do anything about bad Chinese behavior). Trade is one of the ways to counterbalance the worst parts of the US. Let us note that China will probably be the largest trading bloc on the planet by 2050 unless a fair number of other countries clean up their acts.

      My view is that the US can beat China in the long run, but it requires going back to the fundamentals that made the US what it is: freedom, the rule of law, very open immigration to the diligent, and global trade. Notice on three of those four points, the US already beats China and if that persists through to 2100, the US probably would remain a superpower.

      1. First, that trade is an avenue to introducing democracy into China

        That would be good if it was something our government or industries actually worked on. China is actually taking steps on many fronts to prevent this from happening with no pushback from our government or industries.

        Second, this approach would entail a great deal of human suffering throughout the world, not just in the US and China.

        It depends on what is actually proposed. China already is waging a trade war and engages in industrial espionage on an unprecedented scale. And they engaged in government to government espionage the same way. We need to stand up for ourselves. How we do is the key question but doing nothing isn’t going to be to our benefit in the long run.

        For starters, we should make the USA an appealing place for businesses. This can’t just be something the federal government takes up but has to be something that state and local governments do as well. Too often, all levels of government seek to punish businesses.

        We also need to retaliate against these cyber attacks. Chinese companies that benefit from theft should see repercussions. Stuxnet level attacks shouldn’t be used but there are a lot of things that could be done to make their lives a little less pleasant.

    2. Barring a nuclear barrage, nothing the United States does will stop China from going through the industrial revolution. The idea is to pull China into the international trading community so that their interests lie with ours, in peaceful economic coexistence.

  7. Okay, reading the article, they’ve got the cart before the horse. Hollywood scriptwriters aren’t bright enough to come up with anything new. They’ve lifted these ideas straight out of Harpoon and other naval war games, and regular articles in military journals. It’s useful info for the militarily uninformed in an easily digestible format that they likely absorbed in their younger years. But has nothing to offer a real professional officer. Of which there seem to be precious few above the rank of naval Captain. And not many at that rate or below, either. When it comes to war (or nut-cutting time as my rancher grandfather put it), a LOT of the peacetime leaders will be shown to be as useless as big tits on an iguana and will be shit-canned, as they were in WWII. I’ve my doubts with today’s highly politicized GOFO ranks that toeing the party line (note: that’s the proper spelling/usage of the term) ISN’T more important than wartime performance. We sacked a LOT of colonels, ship commanders, generals, admirals (even if by ‘promoting/transferring’ to someplace relatively harmless stateside more in-line with their actual capabilities) in WWII. Some not fast enough, for sure. But today, I’ve a really bad feeling too many will die right off, losing too many men and equipment so fast that it won’t matter.

    1. a LOT of the peacetime leaders will be shown to be as useless as big tits on an iguana and will be shit-canned, as they were in WWII

      Trump has already shown he is ready to use this approach.

      It would be really cool if he can get Mattis in his administration somehow.

  8. This is the genius of Trump’s plan to have other countries pay their fair share rather than depend on the US to provide all the muscle.

    Our forces are too reliant on too few ships, expensive equipment and vehicles. But if other nations also have a decent capability it makes the enemies calculations much more difficult.

  9. If we can get Russia to respect the near abroad nations sovereignty they could become an ally rather than a foe. The Russian people are suspicious but could embrace free market freedoms and join the free world as they once almost did (until communism gripped them.)

    China is much more manageable when they distrust Russia and India.

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