The United States Department of Defense has long ago become the Department of Offense.
That old cliché -- “spending money like a drunken sailor” -- fits perfectly when we consider the $billions upon $billions of taxpayer dollars the military forces are gobbling up today.
Now the Department of Offense is hyping a so-called “super stealthy destroyer warship” designed for more and louder American saber rattling. Its major purpose is to intimidate China with the “capability of sneaking up on coastlines virtually undetected and pounding targets at several times the speed of sound with electromagnetic "rail guns" right out of a sci-fi movie.”
During a visit to Singapore recently, U.S. Offense Secretary Leon Panetta said the Navy will be deploying 60 percent of its fleet worldwide to the Pacific by 2020, and that new high-tech ships will be a big part of its shift.
It makes me wonder how the Great American military baboon colony would take it if China announced that it was deploying a majority of its military forces to just off the California coast with a compliment of brand new stealth warships capable of sneaking up on the coastline of Los Angeles or San Francisco virtually undetected and pounding those cities at the speed of sound with electromagnetic "rail guns" right out of a sci-fi movie.
That sort of blatant provocation would have our President and the big brass knuckle draggers at the Pentagon screaming like banshees, for sure.
But China has done no such thing and there is no reason to believe that it will. So why is the United States of America deliberately on a fools course to provoke China, a nation which, given the right kind of diplomacy, could conceivably be our friend and ally?
They’re doing it because they can. The Navy says that its money well spent. The rise of China has been cited as the best reason for keeping the revolutionary ship afloat.
We have the largest most powerful military force in the world, and by God we intend to use it. Why make friends when it’s much easier to make enemies and have fun with stealth technology and missiles?
So the Pentagon has lately been heavily promoting this newest outrageously expensive boondoggle, the DDG-1000, as the most advanced destroyer in history -- a silver bullet of stealth, calling it a perfect fit for what Washington now considers the most strategically important region in the world -- Asia and the Pacific.
The first of the new ships are set to be delivered in 2014. "With its stealth, incredibly capable sonar system, strike capability and lower manning requirements -- this is our future," Adm. Jonathan Greenert, chief of naval operations, said in April after visiting the shipyard in Maine where they are being built.
Its ability to carry out missions both on the high seas and in shallows closer to shore is thought to be especially important in Asia because of the region's many island nations and China's long Pacific coast. It features a wave-piercing hull that leaves almost no wake, electric drive propulsion and advanced sonar and missiles.
But the usual cost overruns and technical delays plaguing bloated projects like this one have left many military experts wondering if the whole endeavor is too focused on futuristic technologies for its own good.
It’s similar to the problem-ridden F-22 stealth jet fighter which was hailed as the most advanced fighter ever built but was cut short because of prohibitive costs. And its successor, the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, has swelled up into the most expensive procurement program in Defense Department history.
Get this: the bill to the taxpayers for just one of these new ships is $3.1 billion, actually $7 billion each when research and development is added in, and the Navy originally wanted 32 of them – that’s a staggering $224 billion dollars.
It won’t get that many. "Costs spiraled -- surprise, surprise -- and the program basically fell in on itself," said Richard Bitzinger, a security expert at Singapore's Nanyang Technological University. "The DDG-1000 was a nice idea for a new modernistic surface combatant, but it contained too many unproven, disruptive technologies."
One of these $7billion dollar tin cans is too many as far as I’m concerned.
China has so far remained quiet about the American threat. But Rear Adm. Zhang Zhaozhong, an outspoken commentator affiliated with China's National Defense University, scoffed at the hype surrounding the ship, saying that despite its high-tech design it could be overwhelmed by a swarm of fishing boats laden with explosives. If enough boats were mobilized some could get through to blow a hole in its hull, and "It would be a goner," he said.
It should be a goner before the first one is built.
American has had quite enough of stealth binging.