August 5, 2016

Hundreds of Billions Spent On Defense, For What?

The US defense budget for 2016 is $573 billion. But what are we spending all this money on if our soldiers and sailors are sent in harms way with little or no means to protect themselves?

We spend billions on incredible war craft that don't work as promised. Their only purpose it seems is to enrich political donors.

The following article does not give me any confidence in our martial prowess at sea.
DURING war games played off the coast of Florida last year, a nuclear-powered French attack submarine, Saphir, eluded America’s sub-hunting aircraft and vessels with enough stealth to sink (fictitiously) a newly overhauled American aircraft-carrier, Theodore Roosevelt, and most of her escort. An account of the drill on a French defence-ministry website was promptly deleted, but too late for it to go unnoticed.

Nor was this French victory a fluke. In 2006, in what was very far from being a war game, a Chinese diesel-electric submarine surfaced near Okinawa within torpedo range of another American carrier, Kitty Hawk, without having been detected by that carrier’s escort of more than a dozen vessels and anti-submarine aircraft. And, from the point of view of carrier-deploying navies, things are threatening to get worse. Saphir, launched in 1981, hardly represents the state of the art in underwater undetectability; in the decade since the Okinawa incident diesel-electrics have become even quieter. For an inkling of the silence of the new generation of such subs when they are running on battery power alone, without their engines turning, Jerry Hendrix, a former anti-submarine operations officer on the Theodore Roosevelt, asks: “How loud is your flashlight?”

Moreover, submarines are spreading. Since the cold war ended, the number of countries deploying them has risen from a dozen or so to about 40. Many of the newcomers are not part of the Western system of alliances. Some are actively hostile to it. And more may join them. A secondhand diesel-electric boat—not state of the art, admittedly, but effective nevertheless—can be had for as little as $350m.
More here.
H/T Lucianne


Kid said...

SO much corruption in the defense weapons category.

The F22 and now the F35 is regarded as outright rape by those in the know.

And the new aircraft carrier (35 Bln I believe) with the new stuff like the electro magnetic catapult system Doesn't work well enough (along with many other systems like arresting cable mechanism) to go to combat with. 3rd world country. we're whistling past the grave yard while the elites extract every last dollar out of the country.

sig94 said...

Kid - the new USS Gerald Ford is $12.9 billion and two years behind schedule. Undoubtedly some of the cost overrun is due to design changes and tweaks to dozens, even hundreds of specs. But they're now saying that this duck may never quack as it should. Same for the Air Force.