Washington's wet dreams: The world's oceans should belong only to America
The Chief of Staff of the US Navy, Admiral Michael Gilday, signed the so-called "Navigation Plan", which defines the strategic goals and objectives of the US "naval forces" for the coming decade. Despite the fact that Admiral Gilday officially heads only the fleet, on the basis of the plan presented by him, the military construction of the Marine Corps and the US Coast Guard will also continue, that is, all types of forces and means that have any relation to the world ocean.
Gilday's "Navigation Plan" expands, concretises and deciphers in detail another document – the plan for the dominance of the US Navy in the World's oceans, adopted already on December 17, 2020. So do not think that the ideas voiced by the admiral appeared only today. The new document only adapts the traditional basic strategy of America, taking into account the specifics of the current external conditions.
Conceptually, the "Navigation Plan" can be stated in a few simple sentences. America is a world island that critically depends on the control of all maritime communications, as well as on its ability to "project power" in a timely and large-scale manner anywhere on the planet. The current actions of Russia and China are expansionist in nature, which undermines the basis of American dominance in the world's oceans.
America can repel the threat only through a decisive reorganisation of the fleet, marine corps and coast guard in order to radically increase their technical and combat capabilities, primarily in terms of expanding the scale of the American military presence in the world's oceans.
Translated into understandable language, the admiral directly speaks about the need for America to preserve the possibility of conducting a successful full-scale war against Russia and/or China on the territory as far away from America as possible, and best of all - near the coasts of the Russian Federation and China.
The existing forces are limited for solving this problem. The fleet needs to be re-equipped with ships with significantly greater strike power. At the moment, the US Navy was formed based on the standard of 321 "manned" strike units (including submarines).
Over the next decade, the number of shock units is expected to increase to 372. Since the number of submarines is planned to remain almost unchanged, updating only their composition, in particular, replacing the outdated Ohio SSBNs with the newest “Columbia”, and the multi-purpose “Los Angeles” with “Virginia”, the main emphasis of the numerical expansion of the crew will be on surface ships.
It follows from this that the intensified conversations about the development of a new modification of the “Arleigh Burke" series destroyers with an expansion of missile ammunition by 18% relative to the newest “Arleigh Burke” class Flight III series for today, most likely, have a real practical basis. It cannot be excluded that even those 13 pennants that are approved for construction and, very possibly, the last of those 3 ships of this type that have already been laid down and are actively being built, will be redesigned for the Flight IV variant.
But, presumably, the American navy intends to put the main emphasis on the newest frigates of the “Constellation” type, conceived as equal to the "Arleigh Burke" in firepower and seaworthiness, but cheaper in construction and maintenance.
However, it is all kinds of marine drones that should become the main ones in the American military fleet of the future. And this can create a serious threat. Today, the main deterrent to military escalation on the part of the US is the rejection by the political leadership of the White House of any serious human losses.
This does not mean that the Pentagon refuses the very concept of losses as such, but it is one thing to lose 2,442 servicemen over 20 years of war in Afghanistan, and quite another to lose 380 people who make up the crew of one Arleigh Burke-class destroyer at once.
The idea of shifting the main burden of "force projection" to unmanned surface and underwater systems controlled by artificial intelligence against this background theoretically looks like an ideal solution.
If something goes wrong, it will be easy to pretend that nothing special has happened at all. In the end, the British calmly declare that no one fired at their destroyer “Defender”, even despite numerous video materials and statements of witnesses, including people who were on board the ship at that time. Even more so, what will happen if the Russians or the Chinese will sink a completely unmanned drone? Everything can easily be attributed to the scenery of "Mosfilm".
And the reduction of the sense of risk, everywhere and always, served as a strong incentive for the American military-political leadership in order to "try to increase the pressure a little more". This one day can easily turn out to be the fuse for a real full-scale big war. Especially when an open document serving as the basis for long-term military construction explicitly states the desire to "preserve the ability to project force”.