... the ship is looking pretty rough. It's not only the diesel exhausts and that plume of soot they spray across the beam, but just everything: Look at that weeping corrosion on the bridge windows, that big spill down the side from some kind of exhaust, and that weathered look across the superstructure generally... ...
This is a young ship - a ship that is the lead of her class - and look at her. She already looks like a worn out 50s era British destroyer still in the service of some 3rd World country.
You can't really blame the CO or the crew. They were given a sub-optimal ship manned at sub-optimal levels - a PPT slide made flesh, with the expected results.
LCS-1 looks like a tramp steamer off Ivory Coast and LCS-2 is so broke pierside in Mayport that her crew is on a first name basis at Singletons. It is all based on hope.
Hope does not bring victory at sea. Solid leadership, properly trained and equipped Sailors, and a well made ship bring victory. Hope? Yamato at Okinawa was hope.
“Both ships meet our operational requirements and we need LCS now to meet the warfighters’ needs,”I'm not mad or frustrated anymore, it just makes me sad. Sad that we have reached a point as an institution that a "workhorse" of our Fleet is this. We have misdirected our loyalty so much to personalities instead of the institution that no senior personnel come out in opposition. They don't come out due to fear - I know, there was a reason that while I was on Active Duty no one knew who I was. I get private comments all the time with a "I cannot say this in public, but I wanted you to know ... "
--- ADM Gary Roughead, 16 SEP 09.
Nice Command Climate we have here.
So, there you go. LCS in a pic. Tells you a lot. We need to stop this rolling train wreck now. Should have killed the program a few years ago - but we should not throw good money after bad.
I'll repeat. As it is too late to kill it all - stop the run at 12-24 ships. License build one of the better true multi-mission EuroFrigates of a run of 12-24 until we have our own domestic design somewhere south of the Arleigh Burke Flight IV (nee DDG-X). Transfer LCS to USCG to function as medium endurance cutters 1-for-1 as the Bath-Built EuroFrigates come off the line.
Hope. The gentlemanly give-and-take that I have with some pro-LCS people remains strange. They acknowledge its shortcomings from cost to capability - but chant "hope" and "network" as if those things will fix physics, engineering, chemistry, and the sea. Amazing, and sad. I don't think we have seen a cult-like belief in a system since the B-36.
UPDATE: Sam Fellman over at The Scoop Deck is giving me a bit of title envy.