Keeping the blogosphere posted on the goings on of the world of submarines since late 2004... and mocking and belittling general foolishness wherever it may be found. Idaho's first and foremost submarine blog. (If you don't like something on this blog, please E-mail me; don't call me at home.)

Thursday, June 17, 2010

SSN vs. SSK

It's time for the Defense Bill markups, so that means it must be time for the Gary Hart-inspired brigade of diesel submarine enthusiasts to put out another article saying the U.S. should invest in diesel submarines. Here's an article in Proceedings from a Naval War College professor (not surprisingly, a European) who claims, once again, that we need diesel submarines because they're "cheaper" and "more maneuverable" in littoral waters. Among other issues, here are some of my problems with the concept:

1) The author claims cost savings by comparing the prices of American SSNs with European SSKs. This is comparing apples to oranges, since the Europeans don't have the same SUBSAFE standards we do, and their combat systems are significantly less complex than ours. For an American-built SSK, since it would be politically- and morally-impossible to build it with reduced SUBSAFE ("Sure, Mrs. Navymom, I'm sure you wouldn't mind sending your son off in a submarine that isn't as safe as it could possibly be"), the cost of such boats would be much higher than the 25% of the purchase price of an SSN the author claims.

2) The author of this piece at least points out that diesel submarines have a hard time getting across large oceans rapidly. Were the U.S. Navy primarily interested in defending our coast, then sure diesel subs would make sense. However, since the U.S. military in the real world is built around keeping threats far from our shores by threatening the homeland of our potential adversaries, money from a shrinking shipbuilding pool that went to diesel submarines would move the U.S. towards a model where we aren't "forward focused" (or "imperialistic", depending on the arguers point of view). Which, I believe, is what they really want. If so, they should at least be honest and come out and say it, so we can have a debate about that.

3) The theory that "it's better to build more of an inferior weapons platform" was pretty much shot to hell in the two recent wars against Iraq. Many progressive "Reformers" (including Sen. Hart aide William Lind, famous for becoming a conspiracy-mongering nutball in recent years) argued during the 80s that we could get more bang for the buck by building more units of obsolete weapons. Consider the tank -- their theory seemed to be that increasing the lethal range of your weapons system such that you could kill at 2000 yards when your enemy could kill at 1500 yards, you'd get a 4:3 kill ratio. In actuality, in both tank and air warfare, recent conflicts have shown that the better American weapons have about a 100:1 kill ratio, or better. I would guess (based on no real data other than participating in exercises against allied diesel boats) that the kill ratio of an SSN vs. SSK conflict would be greater than 10:1, which kind of argues against the theory that SSKs are "cheaper" in a hot war scenario. Sure, diesel submarines could kill surface ships who blunder into their area, but they sure can't run them down very effectively. In modern submarine warfare, speed is life (or death, depending if you're the hunter or the hunted).

The true aim of those who want the U.S. to shift to diesel submarines is to stop, or at least drastically reduce in an era of limited shipbuilding budgets, the production of nuclear submarines. Those who want the U.S. to "dumb down" their weapons systems (as proponents of diesel submarines such as the writer of the Proceedings article want to do) seem mainly interested in making the U.S. less powerful militarily. I'll leave it to the reader to determine what their motive for that may be.

(In discussing this article, there's probably no need to talk about how much water you've actually had under the keel during various missions. You can just laugh inwardly at the numbers the writer provides.)

44 Comments:

Blogger Mike Golch said...

what an assinine idea.

6/17/2010 10:13 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

While to make a large percentage of our submarine force diesel based is a bad idea, I could see how operating a small limited number of diesel submarines could be beneficial. As training platforms they could be beneficial, and it would give American shipyards the ability to export submarines to other nations. We export just about every other type of weapon imaginable except for submarines. I just think this is something that should be given a serious look, and not just casually brushed aside like in the past.

6/17/2010 10:29 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Point #2 is the money one, I think.

6/17/2010 10:38 AM

 
Anonymous R.I.P. DBF said...

Those who want the U.S. to "dumb down" their weapons systems (as proponents of diesel submarines such as the writer of the Proceedings article want to do) seem mainly interested in making the U.S. less powerful militarily. I'll leave it to the reader to determine what their motive for that may be.

Rickover was similarly and wisely adamant against letting the diesel-boat "camel" get its nose in the tent.

The fact is that the diesel boat - as regards America's interests, both near and far - is a truly obsolete platform. The DBF guys - no disrespect intended for their accomplishments of 60-70 years ago - are not thinking strategically.

6/17/2010 11:23 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

SSN's will and should always be the mainstay of our sub force, but SSK's should definitely play a role.

A few squadron's of forward deployed SSK's could provide a strategic advantage.

Whoever thinks that a well-operated, well-equipped, modern diesel or AIP boat is a 'dumbed down' weapon system has been out of the game too long.

6/17/2010 12:23 PM

 
Blogger Jeff Gauch said...

We do, however have an organization committed to the defense of US coasts: The US Coast Guard.

Authorizing the Coasties to purchase and operate diesel subs makes a lot of sense to me, especially given the increased role semi-submersibles have in drug smuggling.

I think the USCG could do very well with 8; 4 in the Pacific and 4 in the Gulf/Caribbean. That would put one in the yards, one training with the USN, and one or two out on patrol.

We'd get a good idea about the true cost of an SSK, we'd have an indigenous source for training in ASW, we'd get an exportable design, and we'd get better drug interdiction capabilities.

6/17/2010 12:30 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't think we should be getting rid of SSN's (the author of the Proceedings article doesn't either, I might add), but I think you might be selective in what you're choosing to make your point, particularly #3.

Decisions in the past couple of years wrt to major acquisition run contrary to your argument that it's been proven that the most technologically advanced platforms are necessary to maintain our national security posture (see F-22 and DDX and the boondoggle that is the JSF and LCS when they try to be everything to everyone).

In the end, I still think SSN's are the way to go, but it's a conversation worth having.

What I don't get, however, is attributing his arguments to be in support of some nefarious hidden agenda.

6/17/2010 12:36 PM

 
Anonymous R.I.P. DBF said...

IMHO, it's utterly naïve to think that you can wave a dirt-cheap SSK under a politician's nose and get them to understand that it's not simply a much cheaper version of an SSN.

Rickover thought so, too. And he knew a political mind or two.

Politicians play to emotions...nothing more...and that's the beginning, middle and end of stheir tory. They are totally spin-oriented. It's kid stuff to think you can create an argument for continuing to build SSNs that appeals to their intellect.

6/17/2010 1:05 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

One or two diesel boats would be excellent platforms in which to train a cadre of qualified female submariners. Why waste $$$$ on nuc power school to train non-hackers?

Sally

6/17/2010 1:17 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

One or two diesel subs would make excellent training and screening platforms for women.

Those who could hack the limited duration cruises and get qualified could then be sent to nuc school.

My hunch is that 5 years later the navy would realize a huge cost saving.

Libby

6/17/2010 1:22 PM

 
Anonymous 3383 said...

Vego's article includes accurate numbers, but his conclusions are asinine.
For instance- a US SSN "requires" more depth to operate periscopes? That's a feature, not a flaw; and if you really want a shorter periscope, how expensive would one be?
We also have plenty of allies who operate diesel and AIP boats. We operate with and against them, even borrow them (Gotland). Much cheaper than being owner/ operators.p
Maybe supporters put too much stock in online articles about SSKs reaching our CVs during exercises (and the Chinese Song). But they are as correct as the Sea Control Ship supporters were.

6/17/2010 2:07 PM

 
Blogger J said...

Some of these arguments against seem reflexive to me, particularly the asinine idea that SSKs are automatically an inferior platform.

Saying that SSKs are automatically inferior because they have different capabilities is like saying that the JSF is inferior because it doesn't do what a P-8 does. The two platforms, SSN and SSK have separate missions, and it is extremely short-sighted of us as a force to pooh-pooh even the least bit of conversation about this. Those of you who feel that an Ohio class is really the best platform to have tooling around off some of the coasts we send them to, you're delusional. It won't be a couple more years before we read about one of those 8 crews in the paper for something other than good ink.

Two words in favor - forward deployed. You can't do that with nuc boats because of the special needs of that platform. Even the SSGNs have to come home regularly. Park a squadron of SSKs in Japan - who will probably never trust us with SSNs parked permanently in their ports - and see the immediate benefits in increased ISR and other missions, not to mention increased availability of the premier assets...the SSNs. Or did we forget that optempo and wear are increasing as the numbers decrease?

GD/EB looked into buying the Australian submarine shipyard last year. That would be a worthwhile partnership, especially considering how much gear and expertise we already share. It also positions us to develop an export model, as another poster said. Who do you think Singapore or Taiwan are going to trust to build safe ships - Russia, or us?

6/17/2010 2:53 PM

 
Blogger wtfdnucsailor said...

As one of those who deployed on a diesel boat and a nuc in the same operating area, I would say that the nuc was more effective, hands down. The need for nightly battery charges meant loss of on station time. I know that the AIP and the newer diesel boats have more battery capacity than we did in the sixties but a nuc platform is much more effective, especially if you need to get out of Dodge in a hurry. Continuing to borrow and work with diesel boats of our allies is the smart thing to give both the nuc and the surface folks experience against that platform. I remember that it was an initial surprise when we worked with an Argentine diesel boat in the seventies but after the first encounter, we prevailed in all the rest of the exercises. It just took the first encounter for our sonar team to know what to look for.

6/17/2010 3:02 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

GD/EB looked into buying the Australian submarine shipyard last year. That would be a worthwhile partnership, especially considering how much gear and expertise we already share. It also positions us to develop an export model, as another poster said.

Hello? It's not as if the U.S. even wants to be in the business of exporting its submarine expertise. And politically, they're quicksand.

SSKs fall strictly into the categor of "if it flys, floats or fucks...rent it."

6/17/2010 3:08 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Get a few diesel boats just to get some common sense back into the force and fight the nuclear mentality!

6/17/2010 6:53 PM

 
Blogger Don the Baptist said...

Hand the guy an armload of bricks and ask him to plumb the TDU.

6/17/2010 7:42 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Put a squadron of US AIP subs, and a tender, in (you pick one): a) Japan, b) Philippines, c) Darwin and see what happens to total sub days on-station. Anybody that thinks AIP subs can't hack it has not operated against one. Quiet. Slow. Sneaky. Sure, you can't go way fast, not much for under ice, but in a lot of scenarios I'll take an AIP boat. Hey, make a smart choice and build new ones with more weapons and weapon launchers! Anybody remember stern tubes?

6/17/2010 8:09 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Put a squadron of US AIP subs, and a tender, in (you pick one): a) Japan, b) Philippines, c) Darwin and see what happens to total sub days on-station.

See...? It doesn't even take a moronic politician to consider a diesel boat to be the equivalent of an SSN. We're plenty capable of confusing the two ourselves.

Diesel boat "sub days on station" are not nearly the same thing as having an SSN on station for any number of reasons...but someone somewhere is going to make the idiotic case that they are. THAT's why we can't build diesel boats - because apparently all long, black round hulls look the same to some people.

6/17/2010 8:37 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This will never happen due to the Nukes that have taken over our force. We don't have ship anymore, the Navy is to concerned with how they are as Reactor Operators. I wish it would happen because I would jump all over the diesel boats, but it never will.

6/18/2010 5:23 AM

 
Anonymous bullnav said...

In all the discussions of SSN vs. SS(K), no one ever brings up sustained combat operations as a consideration. I think everyone would agree that the US Submarine Force has the most experience with sustained operations going all the way back to 1942. Sustained operations means weeks on station. Vego points out that with a crew of 29 or so, fatigue will be a factor, but I think he seriously underestimates it. A useful parallel would be to look at our CYCLONE Class PC operations. In Haiti in 1994, we had a couple of PC's conducting patrols and surveillance. My old commodore said that with their manning, they would have to pull they would become ineffective after about 3 days because of the limited number of watchstanders they had, especially the CO. Our diesel boats were very effective in WWII because they had a large number of watchstanders who could go the distance. The SS(K)s out there right now would be seriously stressed, I think, rendering them more susceptible to counterdetection and making them more of a liability than an asset.

6/18/2010 5:53 AM

 
Anonymous NHSparky said...

You can project power with an SSN. You cannot project power with an SSK, or certainly not nearly as well. End of story.

6/18/2010 6:47 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So we need to design an AIP diesel that is capable of carrying enough of a crew to sustain operations. That does not seem to be impossible. I don't want a dumb diesel, I want the nastiest, quietest, most lethal design anyone can come up with. We need to have a submarine that can stay on station and fight: isn't that the reason SSN-21 has more tubes and more stows? If we make smart choices, we can design and operate AIP subs that are more capable that those designed by other nations. Others are quick to point out the limitations of current designs. Fine, let's avoid those limitations. I'd like to see an honest effort to come up with a feasible design, and then run the cost numbers. A mixed force of SSNs and AIP boats might allow us to have more submarines forward when we need them. Some might think that's pretty strategic. Maybe not. Maybe we could sell subs to folks that want them. Let's ask some questions and do some analysis. I don't know the answer, but I think the questions should be asked.

6/18/2010 6:54 AM

 
Anonymous NHSparky said...

The point being, anon, is that if you build that "nastiest, quietest, most lethal design" invariably comes back to building a nuke boat, endurance being the first criteria. And, as Joel and others have pointed out, if you build a diesel or AIP with the same SUBSAFE and weapons systems that are on SSN's, you really haven't saved anything. Lastly, nukes are able to operate without closeby support bases. Face it, if you want to send a boat on a 90-day Op, who you gonna send?

6/18/2010 7:18 AM

 
Blogger Rudder Amidships said...

I have to agree that the lost time on station for an SSK while conducting battery charges is a factor. I'm nuke biased to begin with, being a nuke mechanic, but consider that as previously stated by another poster that SSKs have a completely different mission.

I think it is shortsighted to automatically dismiss the SSK as a non-useful platform, when they do have their merits. The newer German built 214s w/ AIP are a huge step towards making the SSK a longer term platform. I know at least a few countries that have bought the design and are producing them locally for their homegrown submarine fleets.

With regard to point 1 about the cost effectiveness and watering down of our beloved SUBSAFE program. I agree that the author of the article was comparing apples to oranges, as the SUBSAFE culture in our navy would never let us produce an inferior product. However, don't be so quick to dismiss other navy's QA programs as not effective. I spent the last few weeks learning about the S. Korean QA program, and they appear to have a similar and effective version of our SUBSAFE program...using german designed SSKs. So it is not an impossible feat by any means.

In the end, I think SSNs are the only real viable platform for the current US defense posture. We are a long deployment blue water navy. We need speed to AOR in an emergency and the ability to stay on station for long periods. Current SSK technology doesn't quite get us there yet, but it is on its way.

---
MM1/SS

6/18/2010 12:19 PM

 
Anonymous Superpower Submariner said...

Nuclear Power is the proven, safe, and best Air Independent Propulsion.

After you design a SUBSAFE SSK with current firecontrol, weapons, and support systems, then add in the immense R&D cost for unproven AIP technology, you'll still have an inferior submarine that costs as much as an SSN.

BTW, the nuclear technology is already bought and paid for, and does not add significant cost to the overall price of an SSN.

6/18/2010 2:24 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree that it would be a good option for the Coast Guard. Some of the Submarine Officers that don't want anything to do with the sub force could just do an inter-service transfer to help them get things started.

6/18/2010 2:34 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

To be fair, his suggestion is merely that the USN should buy some SSK not replace the SSN fleet in its entirety - "They cannot and should not be considered as an alternative to the SSN force, but only as their complement." I think that comparing a SSN to the Swedish Gotland and the German Type 212A is less appropriate than the Collins Class, Victoria Class, or Sōryū Class. The latter three classes all have comparable weapons and sensors to USN SSN (usually U.S. sourced but I digress) and larger crews.

Many submarine forces have QA programs that are equivalent to SUBSAFE - it's a non-argument. Likewise the camel nose in the tent analogy...

Cue the non sequiturs and slippery-slope arguments in 3...2...1...

6/18/2010 4:51 PM

 
Anonymous Ho hum said...

The slippery-slope arguments are accurate, and you need look no further for proof that they hold up well than the plain fact that there are NO plans for a U.S. diesel/non-nuclear AIP force.

In "factuality," there is no argument - just the reality of no non-nuke boats in the U.S., nor any serious plans for building any. That's really the beginning, middle and the end of the story.

Somebody, somewhere, gets it. And obviously has for quite some time.

6/18/2010 5:17 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Old Farts Observations--

1. USA will never-ever again build conventionially powered submarines AIP or not. Reason? KOG mafia has declared so with all those old out of date reasons based on cold war logic (right Jerry?), and most importantly, EB and GD don't want too because they won't make any money on the deal.

2. Attitude, when you believe you know everything there is to know about something, (submarining for example) you not open to learning anything, or believe you have anything to learn. Example Submarine wheels fought ADM Vern Clarks plan to bring Gotland to US on lease to "LEARN ABOUT AIP". They lost, and in the bargin lost a golden opportunity to "benchmark" a different type of conventional submarine. Result--Gotland Fenced off from rest of Submarine Base. First year no support. No host boat!! (WTF what ever happened to the brotherhood of the phin??!! DISGUSTING!!) US Submariners directed to have no contact with Swede boat crew. Gotland met all mission requirements. Got DFM, lub and LOX from commercial sources. Opereated shore side with portable office and a couple oF sea vans. Had six week interim drydocking at 32nd street graving dock including battery changeout carried out by about 30 KOCKEMS ship repair techs flown over form Sweden. Gotland's performance surprised a lot of Navy brass including KOG's heirs, hence sudden interest in exercises with conventional submarines.

2. Personal history here--Mine plant submerged inside buckner bay water depth 85-115 feet. Platform-- Fleet snorkel submarine. Don't talk to me about a stand off mine such as handful of converted MK 37 torpedos. There's still a shitload of MK 57 moored mines that need to be planted. That kind of stuff will not be done by SSN or SSGN. It's gonna get done by P-3's, P-8's and B-52's as was done in 1972.

3. Personal history here--deployed to WesPac on SS-580 in 1972. Three back-to-back spec ops. 42 days inport during six month wespac. No breakdowns--made all comittments. Conventional boats can get the job done.

4. Forget WWII. Early 60's to 1990 SubPac had a number of forward deployed diesel boats in WesPac without tender support, or need for tender support. Voyage repairs and overhauls conducted in Yokosuka and Subic bay. There are still a lot of missions that can be conducted by forward deployed AIP boats that can relieve SSN's to play escort for the carrier.

5. One cost of SSN ignored by all on this thread. Cost of reactor disposal. Scrap a SSK, send it to your local scrapper. Check out pics of USS Trout being scrapped at Brownsville TX shipbreaker.

6. Snorkel battery charge. Do you know what Prarie-Masker is?? Sonar guys, ever heard a conventional boat snorkeling with the Prarie Masker running??

Anyway, as I said at the beginning, USA will never build another conventional submarine--ever. There is no money in it for EB and GD.

My two cents, and keep a zero bubble...........

DBFTMC(SS)USNRET

6/18/2010 7:11 PM

 
Anonymous SubIconoclast said...

Milan Vego may not be my favorite author, but he is far from stupid or ignorant on maritime operations - particularly in the littorals.

Defense acquisition leadership started down a path in the 1990s where they wanted every platform to be able to perform every mission. Oddly enough, that has led to fewer platforms... fielded in smaller quantities... costing more to operate... while offering less presence and less capacity to deploy. Maybe specialization has benefits worth investigating.

Vego (along with several posters here) sees possible utility in using SSKs in specific missions where SSN capability is more than the mission requires or the nation can afford to spend. For folks who think we need more than the currently-planned 39 attack submarines, SSKs represent an idea worth exploring. We've already decided we can't afford more SSNs, so we either find an alternate platform to provide the lost capability (SSKs? UUVs? Probably a mix of several technologies...) or accept diminished national security capability.

I find the potential in SSKs attractive enough to merit serious consideration. What we're doing now - watching the fleet continue to contract with no end in sight - isn't nearly good enough.

6/18/2010 7:15 PM

 
Blogger MT1(SS)WidgetHead said...

There's no way we're going back to diesels. It's a nice idea to think about but we'd be spinning our wheels in a useless fashion. Can you say nostalgia?

If we spent the money and time to draw up a new diesel design, how much more would we need in order to build a few more tenders as well?

Oh hang on there a minute...We have close to 20 diesels through out the country which presently serve as museum boats. Why not bring a few of them back into service? We can save on cost and refitting time with a Gato, Balao or one of the two Tench class boats being recommissioned.

How's that for a recommendation? I dunno, but something tells me we'll be okay without building diesels and then handing them over to the Coast Guard.

I have nothing against the CG or DBF technology and operational tactics. But there's no way we could make any of this work in today's active environment effectively. I would like to explain more in detail but NNPI says NO!!!

6/19/2010 1:58 AM

 
Blogger Oz said...

There's a strategic advantage to fielding a swarm of cheap inferior assets against a small core of expensive superships. The basic principle is that the superships have to be perfect, but the swarm just has to be lucky. Eventually a $1K platform is going to kill your $1B one. I'm not saying that it would work for us. We value the individual soldier/sailor too much to use these strategies (and that's a good thing), but they can work. They don't even need to be human-wave suicide attacks, just ask the Bismarck.

The SUBSAFE argument is a non-starter. Nuke boats use it, so the real cost difference comes from that big hot rock in the middle. I'm not pretending to know how much exactly, but I promise you we'd save a bundle per unit over nuclear.

Where you are correct, Joel, is in the mission, and I think that's enough to turn the point.

6/19/2010 5:50 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The whole "its too secret to discuss but trust me nukes are the best" isn't going to convince anybody who doesn't already believe. Selling politicians on continuing an all nuke fleet needs to be done with rational arguments and not a bunch of mumbo-jumbo. There isn't a single mission that SSN perform that can't be/isn't already done by SSK from other nations with the sole exception of CVN escort during high speed transits. However, off the top of my head, you could argue that the training of nuclear technicians for civilian industry, national prestige, and ability to rapidly deploy are all strategic advantages.

PS: I'm confused as to why some posters believe that a SSK requires a tender to deploy with them? Name a single western nation that deploys tenders with their SSK.

6/19/2010 8:52 PM

 
Anonymous Ho hum said...

Selling politicians on continuing an all nuke fleet needs to be done with rational arguments and not a bunch of mumbo-jumbo.

You speak as if they 'need' to be sold on an all-nuke submarine fleet.

Look out your window: that's all we have right now, and if anyone's 'selling' non-nuke boats to the U.S., they'd better hope they get paid by the hour rather than on commission.

6/19/2010 9:40 PM

 
Anonymous Mark/MM1(SS) said...

anon @8:52 - What nations forward deploy their SSKs? On the (very) rare occasion they do, they're dependent on an ally (usually us) to support them. I doubt if any forward deploy at all, other than the occasional one that visits the States. That's why there's no western nation that deploys tenders...sheesh.

6/19/2010 9:47 PM

 
Anonymous T said...

You might want to add strategic deterrence to the list of things SSK's can't do as well as SSN's. I suppose you probably COULD build an SSK that can do it, but definitely not do it as well.

6/20/2010 9:05 AM

 
Anonymous Carl said...

"Sally" & "Libby" - hate to break it to ya but women have been hacking nuke school for a while now. It's just that they don't subsequently get assigned to SSNs or SSBNs. And to think they couldn't hack a deployment or patrol is purely "turn of the century" (1900's not 2000's) thinking with now basis in fact.

But then I'm probably just reacting to some "trolling" anyway.

6/21/2010 7:20 AM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The entire discussion is academic anyway. At the rate UUV technology is advancing they would beat any new design diesel boat to sea anway.

The best reason to not use "dumbed" down weapons in swarms is the ultra-casualty sensitive US population. That argument goes out the window with UUV's. As we continue to refine underwater comms at speed and depth the capabilities of UUVs will only increase.

Hopefully the skimmers get some so we can stop wasting our time babysitting/protecting them all the time!

6/21/2010 8:12 AM

 
Blogger J said...

"Hopefully the skimmers get some so we can stop wasting our time babysitting/protecting them all the time!"

Like they'd know how to use them. These are people who think TMA is triangulation.

6/21/2010 2:27 PM

 
Anonymous pc assclown said...

Joel,

Was this post about nuc submarines (your passion) vs diesel submarines (the Duck's passion) a cleverly disguised ploy to lure the Duck back into the discussion?

6/21/2010 3:52 PM

 
Anonymous Wooden Ships said...

The Duck is now posting as Carl(a) at 6/21 7:20am.

6/21/2010 4:14 PM

 
Anonymous Anonymous said...

@ T,

I'm pretty confident that strategic deterrence isn't done by SSNs but rather is the role of SSBNs. Nobody is arguing that SSBNs should be replaced by diesels. How to fund the projected $8.8 billion per boat OHIO replacement cost is another question.

6/21/2010 9:32 PM

 
Anonymous Carl said...

Wooden Ships - Not sure whether to take this as kudos or an insult. But, I'm not the Duck. I've made other posts here before and probably in threads that the Duck posted, too. Sorry to burst your bubble.

6/22/2010 6:46 AM

 
Anonymous T said...

Anon @ 9:32:

Oh yeah, good point. as for how to pay for it... That's easy, cut the program. Obviously that's going to (have to) happen.....

6/23/2010 3:56 AM

 

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