New Stealth Destroyer canceled because its basically defenseless

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New Stealth Destroyer canceled because its basically defenseless

Two weeks ago, the Navy canceled plans to build the rest of its hulking stealth destroyers. At first, it looked like the DDG-1000s' $5-billion-a-copy price tag was to blame. Now, it appears the real reason has slipped out: The Navy's most advanced warship is all but defenseless against one of its best-known threats.

We already knew that the older, cheaper, Burke-class destroyers are better able to fight off anti-ship missiles -- widely considered the most deadly (and most obvious) hazard to the American fleet. Specifically, the old Burkes can shoot down those missiles using special SM-3 interceptors; the new DDG-1000 cannot.

But now, a leading figure in the Navy, Deputy Chief of Naval Operations (and Vice-Admiral) Barry McCullough, is saying that the DDG-1000 "cannot perform area air defense" at all.

Never mind the SM-3; the ship isn't designed to fire any kind of long-range air-defense missile, whatsoever.

It's presumably limited to the same last-ditch "point defense" systems (think Phalanx guns and short-range interceptors, like the Evolved Sea Sparrow Missiles) that cargo ships, aircraft carriers and even Coast Guard cutters carry in case a missile slips past their screening Burkes. Those point defenses can't intercept ballistic missiles at all -- and when they destroy sea-skimming missiles, the debris can still strike and severely damage the ship.

In other words, the world's most expensive surface warship can't properly defend itself or other ships from an extremely widespread threat.

That, needless to say, is a problem.

Not only is the DDG-1000 vulnerable to the ballistic anti-ship missiles that countries such as China are developing, it wouldn't even be particularly effective at protecting fleets against common weapons in the arsenals of everyone from Russia to Iran. And it's not like this was some kind of new threat; these missiles have been around, in one form or another, since World War II.

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By netchicken: posted on 5-8-2008

$5 billion ?? The kind of money and effort put into building these machines to kill people, if it were invested in the space program we would already have a base on the moon and would have landed on Mars. Thousands of millions of people would have benefitted from the technologies gained through this endevour. Instead they squander money by the boatload for these no shows.

The kind of investment that goes into military research and military project in America is staggering and absurd. And the product of all these billions ?

We're having a tough time taking out a bunch of thugs with kalashnikov's hiding out in some caves.....

As they say, pity the fool !
By IAF: posted on 6-8-2008

Its really insane that it got as far as it did. How can you justify developing a defenseless ship?

According to the article they had started with the concept of a ship primarily designed to launch missiles which might stay out of harms way in times of war, but its naive to think that no one would go after it with planes or other missiles.
By netchicken: posted on 6-8-2008

If you look at all the projects that the Pentagon pours BILLIONS into you would think the US military is run by a bunch of 6 year old fixated over having shiny new toys.
By IAF: posted on 6-8-2008

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