Playing Catch-up: US Navy lags behind Russia, China by a Decade

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… from Sputnik News,  Moscow

[ Editor’s Note:  Advanced missile technology, especially hyper speed fuels, has been the obvious catch up tool for anyone outgunned by the fire power of the massive US military. This was financed with all the money China and Russia were not spending on a huge overseas base structure like the US.

The US’ forward leaning force projection after the Cold War was more a strategy for the defense contractors for whom these logistical supply base contracts were cash cow annuities. War or no war, they wanted their money, and they have made huge amounts, money still owed by the American people.

Unsaid in this article, like all the others, is what these missiles will represent when armed with mini-nukes. The weight will go down without the 1000-pound or heavier conventional warhead, allowing for more fuel for longer range, or more sophisticated electronic warfare packages.

The Russian air campaign in Syria has been just the tip of the iceberg of the capabilities coming online. By the time our Navy catches up, our potential targets will have their new and improved versions, and mass producing them at a fraction of the costJim W. Dean ]

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– First published  …  February 22,  2016

Ship launched Tomohawk - USS Farragut
Ship launched Tomahawk – USS Farragut

The US Navy is trying to upgrade its arsenal as soon as possible as it does not want to lag behind the Russian and Chinese navies. However, the US is unlikely to develop any new missiles earlier than 2020.

The Pentagon has asked Congress to allocate a budget for 2017 in the sum of $434 million, directing it for the update of 250 Tomahawk cruise missiles.

However, according to the US Naval Institute, even that amount will not be enough to modify all of the Tomahawks, RT reported, citing data from the US Naval Institute.

This type of missile has one of the longest ranges at 1,852 km. Moreover, the US Navy is seeking to adapt another Standard 6 (SM-6) missile for use against ships. If this modification is successful, according to US Defense Minister Ashton Carter, the range of the SM-6 will be increased from 249 to 370 km.

But the most important anti-ship missile of the US Navy according to the US Naval Institute is the RGM / UGM-84 Harpoon, it can be launched from a fighter jet and a ship or submarine. But the main disadvantage of this missile however, is that it is extremely short ranged — even less than 130 km.

According to RT, attempts by the US Navy to modernize its fleet urgently are caused by the successful demonstration of the capabilities of the Russian and Chinese navies.

In October 2015 the Russian Navy used Caliber cruise missiles capable of striking targets at a distance up to 2,500 km with an accuracy of three meters. The missiles were launched against Daesh terrorists in the Caspian Sea and they hit targeted areas in Syria with exact precision.

Simultaneously, China publicly demonstrated its ‘East Wind’ (Dongfeng DF-21D) missile with a range of 1,450 km and a high destructive power.

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Jim W. Dean is Managing Editor of Veterans Today involved in operations, development, and writing, plus an active schedule of TV and radio interviews. Read Full Complete Bio >>>

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