By Bryan McGrath
The incoming administration must grasp two things about the U.S. Navy as it assumes power. The first is that the overarching purpose for the U.S. Navy is to guarantee global freedom of the seas. Freedom of the seas is the irreducible argument for trade, upon which both the security and the prosperity of this nation is based. No other element of American military power is as closely connected to the nation’s prosperity.
Secondly, the Administration needs to know that the fleet that guarantees freedom of the seas must be large enough to both deter war and to prosecute it. However, the composition of the fleet that deters war and the fleet that conducts war is not necessarily the same. Our present fleet does not make this distinction, and it leaves us less prepared for both deterrence and warfighting.
Bryan McGrath is the Managing Director of The FerryBridge Group LLC, and the Assistant Director of Hudson Institute’s Center for American Seapower.
Featured Image: SUBIC BAY, Republic of the Philippines (Feb. 11, 2013) – USS Stockdale (DDG 106), a US Navy Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer rests moored in Subic Bay, Republic of the Philippines for a port visit. Stockdale is a part of the Nimitz Strike Group Surface Action Group and is currently transiting the Western Pacific Ocean. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class David Hooper/Released)