The impressive aircraft carrier looks and sounds like nothing else in the world. To load and unload planes, the crew of an aircraft carrier works in perfect harmony. The ships can defend and attack for months at a time while at sea. For these and other reasons, the Navy has asked the Department of Defense for funding to build 12 additional Carriers. Only about a dozen or so aircraft Carriers are now in use, thus this would more than double that number.
Conflict is inevitable when you have opponents like China and Russia. In terms of size and resources, the Chinese Navy already dominates the United States Navy. Although they are only in third place, the Russian Navy nevertheless has a formidable sub fleet and disciplined marines.
Recently, amid the confrontation between Russia and Ukraine, a Russian ship was sunk by a missile attack, proving that aircraft carriers are vulnerable. The roughly $300 million dollar ship in question was the Russian Navy’s pride and joy. After being hit by two Neptune cruise missiles launched from shore, it plummeted to the ocean below. So maybe it’s time to rethink spending billions on aircraft carriers and try something new with the Defense budget.
The United States has placed orders for four aircraft carriers, all of which are currently in development. The Nimitz, homeported in Bremerton, Washington, is the oldest aircraft carrier still active at the ripe old age of 48. It has been updated when necessary, but it remains to be seen how long the Nimitz and other aging vessels will last into the foreseeable future. Current plans are for the USS John F. Kennedy aircraft carrier to enter service in 2024.
While there may be a need for more aircraft carriers, increasing the number of carriers from two to four may not be the most cost-effective solution, given the size of the defense budget overall.