The US is in decline but has a navy

Discussion in 'General Discussion Forum' started by DammitBoy, May 15, 2012.

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  1. Crni Vuk

    Crni Vuk M4A3 Oldfag oTO Orderite

    Nov 25, 2008
    I would not hold my breath. I would not be surprised if even more nations will get access to nuclear weapons in the future considering how many new nuclear reactors are build all over the world. So more nations might eventually go with nuclear weapons in the future. Like in Brazil. Or Japan.

    While it seems not to be clear for now most nations still keep the options of making such weapons in the future. Particularly when it comes to Brazil their military and civil nuclear programms cant be separated. Many nations still use the US as nuclear shield like Japan. But if this would change tomorrow not even Japan would hold any longer on their "we don't need nukes" policy.

    Nuclear energy is always related with military use one way or another. The more nuclear reactors are build the higher the risk to see nuclear weapons developed in the future.
  2. DammitBoy

    DammitBoy Carbon Dated and Proud

    Feb 23, 2006
    Have you kids failed to notice the wars being fought since there were more than two nuclear superpowers?

    Maybe I missed the mushroom clouds?

    Nuclear Superpowers fight wars all the time without resorting to nukes. :roll:
  3. donperkan

    donperkan Vault Senior Citizen

    Aug 4, 2011
    You keep using that word. I dont think it means what you think it means.
  4. Crni Vuk

    Crni Vuk M4A3 Oldfag oTO Orderite

    Nov 25, 2008
    what kind of wars. Would be nice if you could be not so ... abstruse.

    There have been many kind of conflicts which is true but the last global conflict was in WW2 where you had millions of trops, tanks and planes clashing together.

    Though you never had a direct confrontation between the superpowers like the Soviets and US. Or in recent history China and US which would have been a third world war.

    2 Powers which hold a huge nuclear arsenal in their hands going in a direct confrontation with each other is lunatic. That is something which even the US and Soviet politicians realized during the cold war.

    Conflicts with satellite states while sometimes intense can not be compared with a full scale battle between for the example the NATO and Russia or the Chinese military where you have millions of men fighting each other. Who ever wins on the field (and hands down the NATO has a good chance to win thx to the US forces and the combined power of Europe) the other side would fall back to nuclear weapons. Thats one of the reasons why it is not that important anymore who has the bigger penis (navy). But actually who owns the debts.

    If I would be you DB I would start learning chinese and teaching it my kids.
  5. Yoshi525

    Yoshi525 Vault Senior Citizen

    Dec 10, 2006
    Whilst DB is clearly off his rocker, I think naval power has more importance than many in this thread accept.

    As Ratty said, in a symmetric conflict between nuclear powers, naval forces are fairly meaningless at a glance. There are other things to consider though, for a start asymmetric warfare is likely to feature heavily in the coming century. Carrier battle groups are pretty important in asymmetric power projection.

    I also think DB is correct in pointing out the significance of war by proxy. I imagine asymmetric proxy wars will be fought across Asia in the next thirty years. Oil is very significant here; whilst the whole 'Iraq was for oil' sentiment is a gross simplification, there is a measure of truth there. The US, Russia and China all currently produce a large % of their own oil supplies. None of these nations have reserves projected to last more than 20 years.

    Lots of people seem to think oil reliance is merely continued for reasons of capitalist profit. This is true so far as oil could have been replaced by now as the major energy source. This does not mean that such a replacement could occur over night. Far from it.

    The PRC's navy *is* designed to combat the US Pacific fleet. The current modernization program is designed to enhance this capability and to lay the foundation for a blue water fleet. The emphasis is very much on destroyers and submarines, rather than carriers. China has a 'pearl necklace' of bases starting in the s. c. Sea and spreading into the Indian. They aim to build on this, whilst maintaining the capability to turn the Pacific Fleet into scrap.

    It's worth mentioning that the PRC don't have a large nuclear arsenal (relative to Russia and the US). It's entirely conceivable that a pre-emptive strike by the US' B2 fleet, coupled with ICBM's, could knock out the majority of the Chinese nuclear arm. It maybe insane, but I have no doubt that this strategy features heavily in current US military doctrine. It also explains the large and increasing Chinese focus on ballistic missile subs.

    Current PLA modernization focuses heavily on air/ missile defence. Both Russia and China have very sophisticated anti-missile systems, in the form of the S-300 and S-400. Certain Chinese variants of the latter are designed to intercept ICBMs, amongst other things.

    In other words you are right in thinking missiles currently rule symmetric conflict, however it's not as clear cut as you make out and more importantly it may not be so in the future.
  6. Ratty Sr.

    Ratty Sr. Ratty, except old Moderator Orderite

    Apr 23, 2003
    But that's my point - the navy is only "useful" in asymmetric wars, i.e. for posturing and browbeating third world thugs. Pit it against any enemy that possesses post-1970s tech, and suddenly those gleaming, mighty carriers are in mortal danger. And I'm not even talking about China - you could outfit a bunch of fucking fishing boats with modern missiles, and use them to take out Nimitz. Even an enemy like Iran, if they apply a modicum of tactical sense, could seriously threaten American vessels in the Gulf.

    The problem here is that most militaries are for various reasons stuck in their Cold War-era mindset, and fail to grasp that you don't need big, expensive, hopelessly vulnerable carriers to possess global power projection capabilities. Just to name a few alternatives: an airforce relying on aerial refueling, stealth fighters, and drones (for browbeating aforementioned third world thugs), a network of bases throughout friendly countries, a small, nimble navy composed of fast missile boats and submarines, and most importantly, lots and lots of cruise missiles and ICBMs.

    Oddly, the US already possesses pretty much all these things, but continues to stupidly rely on its obsolete, but apparently firmly entrenched navy. And now it's also neutering its airforce by sidelining F-22 - a.k.a. the finest fighter every deployed - in favor of that overpriced, overdesigned, utterly useless and underperforming piece of shit F-35. One day these multiplying failures of vision could come back to bite the US in the ass, such as when they pit their expensive-yet-useless carriers and fighters against an enemy that's a bit tougher than an Arab dictator with 1960s tech and medieval command style.

    As for the anti-ballistic defenses like the fabled "missile-shield", that's another red herring, simply because it's much cheaper and expedient to build and launch a thousand missiles than to develop a countermeasure that can stop them all. The key to combating the threat of missiles is stealth, not countermeasures.
  7. Brother None

    Brother None This ghoul has seen it all
    Staff Member Admin Orderite

    Apr 3, 2003
    Not to the economics side!

    I know right, I just keep bringing up what this thread was actually about. Annoying, right?
  8. Ilosar

    Ilosar Vault Fossil

    Apr 20, 2010
    Tell me about it. Even here in Canada we'll be spending billions to grab these shiny, politician-awing, useless toys that won't do anything but fly a handful of real combat missions in third world nations such as Lybia and spend the rest of the time in training or maintenance. They could havegot Super F-18s or F-22 for half the price, but noooooooo, we need the ''cutting edge'' tech. 'cause you know, that's gonna save Canada in it's hour of need, really. Ridiculous. At least spend it on the ground troops, you know, the ones actually making a difference in the proxy wars of this era. But I guess rifles and APCs are less good for jingoistic posturing and military dick-waving than shiny airplanes.

    EDIT: oh yeah, that thread is about economics. Well, I say that any nation that has to pass emergency laws and indebt itself to the ground in order to afford to pay it's public service all the while maintaining untold billions of military spendings has no lesson in economics to give to anybody.
  9. Crni Vuk

    Crni Vuk M4A3 Oldfag oTO Orderite

    Nov 25, 2008
    Reminds me to that documentary about the US military and their use of technology where they did some kind of training. They had a scenario where they fought a force comparable with their own in technology and countermeasure. Like Israel for example. They even had some old retired general leading the enemy forces for that training. It had all you would see in a global conflict. From carriers, to troops and such. Now at first the training didn't go very well. Because they didn't expect the enemy to strike first. Loses have been pretty high. So they started the training again. Just that this time they gave the enemy a ... script. The general refused and stoped working with them as he didn't saw any use in a training that is working on a script. There is nothing to learn from it here. In his words it feelt like the tactics they followed trough vietnam with the statistics and body count system from McNamara. The computers told them all the US forces are wining the war. But everyone out there in the jungle knew the reality was different.
  10. Ratty Sr.

    Ratty Sr. Ratty, except old Moderator Orderite

    Apr 23, 2003
    Millenium Challenge 2002? That should have been a wake-up call for the US military establishment. Instead, it somehow set them even more firmly in their old and stupid ways.

    How is all this relevant to economics? Well, for one, the argument that the navy is somehow the key for the US to maintain its economic dominance simply doesn't hold water. The Navy is a paper tiger. Its only effect on the economy is to bog it down with excess spending that could have instead been used to build a proper welfare state.
  11. nemo00

    nemo00 First time out of the vault

    Mar 18, 2009
    You do know the problem of having a huge army and running out of money to keep it in check means don't you? Just look at the Roman Empire (and I really hate this comparison as other historians on this forum will rightfully accuse me of anachronism). It starts to rot from the inside, which means social unrest which means
    a.)putting more boots on home soil, which means social disorder and chaos which means US as we know it goes by by.
    b.) a delusional general takes control of the armed forces and tries a coup(I know the U.S has social safeguards against this but that doesn't mean that somebody wont try it ).

    In the above situations having a large powerful army is actually more of a liability than an advantage. It may take a longer time but a fucked up economy is the first step towards collapse.
  12. DammitBoy

    DammitBoy Carbon Dated and Proud

    Feb 23, 2006
    You are 100% correct and on point - which is why every person posting after your well thought out post has ignored your logical, relevant submission to the debate.
  13. Crni Vuk

    Crni Vuk M4A3 Oldfag oTO Orderite

    Nov 25, 2008
    with the difference that we are not in the cold war anymore and that the number of "wars" has actually decreased not increased. Wars between 2 nations fighting each other, be it prox or not.

    What you see are more conflicts regarding rebellions and similar situations of which not all but many happen in Africa currently.

    The more the economy is growing together on a large scale the less likely is it that we will see wars. Wars in the current situation are not really something the nations want. Nations like China, Russia, the US, Europe. And many of their "friends". There will be always tensions of course. And saber-rattling. But thats it. Even N-Korea had to take criticism from China for their ridiculous politics and "we attack you all" mentality. This kind of mindset is outdated.

    It doesn't mean the chance of wars in the future are from the table. But as long there is a growing commerce around the globe wars like we seen them in Vietnam or Afghanistan (Soviet invasion) are much less likely to happen.

    It has a reason why many armies invest in attack drones and the like. Small units that can operate without a huge force or carriers or an army to back them up. Bombs that can be guided from home to kill the target (which is also in criticism as basically Obama who is giving the orders steps outside any conventions that way since those kind of weapons are seen as questionable but that just by the way).

    A huge military body will not become obsolete in the future. But in our current situation the number of pirates on the somalian costs are a much bigger threat then any Russian or Chinese "hegemony" which is not going to happen any time soon anyway.

    What many people eventually don't like or realize (what ever you prefer more) is that there will be more distribution of power. You will have Europe, You will have Russia, China, the USA, South America, India and eventually Africa in the future (some parts of it). Some will have more others less power. But the kind of dominance the US had over the world in the last 20 and 30 years will be decreasing. Its a simple and natural evolution. The USA is huge. But it cant dominate the world politics. Or they will collapse on it. Already both Afghanistan and the war in Iraq has shown their limits. Economically speaking. So it is only in their interest if both China and Russia play a bigger role in world politics again. Particularly since both states are not the kind of states anymore you had during the 70s, 80s and 90s. I don't see a real problem here. Even if they are not "perfect" (which state is it anyway) they are MUCH more liberal compared to the past. And this will probably increase. Considering that many of their citizens are gaining now more wealth.

    What ever the future might be. I doubt that we will see that many wars in the near future. Things might change though once we start to run out of some natural resources. Like water.
  14. Tagaziel

    Tagaziel Panzerkatze Staff Member Admin Orderite

    Dec 10, 2003
    Oddly enough, that's disturbingly popular among the American brass. I find this report very enlightening. For some odd reason I don't see it making nearly as much an impact as it should be.

    But ad rem. Remember the much vaunted FCS?

    The report goes into detail about how the American public (and in fact, public opinion worldwide) was being actively deceived by US military officials. Well worth reading.
  15. Ratty Sr.

    Ratty Sr. Ratty, except old Moderator Orderite

    Apr 23, 2003
    What? My second-to-last reply directly addressed what Yoshi had to say. Big, carrier-based navy is unnecessary for both global power projection, and asymmetric warfare. You don't need carriers to deliver either drones, or cruise missiles. You do need them if your goal is to blind the enemy with polished medals and slick, white uniforms.
  16. DammitBoy

    DammitBoy Carbon Dated and Proud

    Feb 23, 2006
    You said this:

    Which is most likely what we will continue to use it for in the foreseeable future.

    ps ~ The F-22 was as stupid an idea as the F-35, we really don't need either vehicle. What we need are 3000 new A-10 Thunderbolt II's - not some bullshit fancysmancy air-to-air fighter jets.
  17. .Pixote.

    .Pixote. Carbon Dated and Proud

    Sep 14, 2009

    It is a frightening aircraft, but a drone with a hellfire missile would have done the same, if not better job. At 4 million each, its a winner economically - and you don't need to risk a pilots life. So 10,000 drones, at 20,000 is the way to go.
  18. TheGM

    TheGM The voice of reason

    Aug 19, 2008
    Wait tell you see the Kinetic Energy Weapon. Nothing says "I love Freedom" like dropping a Tungsten Telephone pole from outer-space on Terrorists and other Freedom hating peoples.
  19. Ratty Sr.

    Ratty Sr. Ratty, except old Moderator Orderite

    Apr 23, 2003
    I beg to differ, F-22 is an amazing fighter, and it will be at least another decade before anyone makes a fighter that can even come close to matching its performance and stealth. Though of limited use in asymmetric warfare, its value as current and future deterrence is inestimable - or could have been, had there been foresight to build 2000 of them instead of a mere 200.

    A-10s are amazing, I agree, but there is no place for close air support jets in the 21st century - that's what UAVs are for.
  20. nemo00

    nemo00 First time out of the vault

    Mar 18, 2009
    The F22 is an superb machine, it still has it's quirks I give you that (like canopy not opening and stuff like that), but then so did the P-38. The Russian counterparts are indeed very maneuverable but if you look at one doing advanced maneuvers using thrust vectoring, they look like they are making a huge extra effort, the pilots bringing the planes very close to their maximum capacity.

    If you look at an f-22 doing the same maneuvers it's like listening to Pavarotti singing nessun dorma. He sang in such a way that it made the whole thing look easy and natural, like you an me doing everyday stuff. The same thing applies to an F-22, doing advanced flight maneuvers which are part of the core programming and not an extra feature still in beta tasting. It simply waltzes trough the air with such a grace and ease that I personally haven't seen in any other aircraft.

    That it has a huge price tag.....well technology especially cutting edge technology is never cheap but that is the cost of being a supperpower.
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