From the mouths of Malaysians ....
This whole article is full of win for a variety of reasons. First let's start with something that I really wish a USA lawmaker would say about LCS. This quote is from Malaysian lawmaker Tony Pua about their government jumping on the Bu11sh1tBingo bandwagon on their next purchase of corvettes,
“We would now like to call upon Mindef to ‘call a spade a spade’ and stop the attempt to disguise our acquisition with fancy names to justify their substantial cost,” he said in a statement today.Amen my Malaysian brother.
We all know that LCS is just a speed-fetish's version of a large corvette. A slightly armed, sub-optimal corvette at that.
He pointed out that the LCS is a specific type of ship built to a specific length, speed and design by the US navy and no other country. He added that the US’ currently had only two such vessels in service and was building others.Of course - no one else can afford to pay so much for a ship that provides so little. Then again, we are flush with cash that we can afford to spend $1.75 for $.90 in utility, right?
While we are at it - let's look at what they are buying.
The DAP lawmaker said he could now confirm that the government was not acquiring “littoral combat ships (LCS)” as claimed, but another class of naval vehicles called “Gowind Class Corvettes”.... and it is ...
DCNS, through its local partner in Malaysia, Boustead Naval Shipyard (BNS), has won its first export contract for a Gowind ship. The €2.14 bn deal has been signed by BNS with the Malaysian government for six Gowind-class corvettesIt is a "scalable" class of warships that, though small to medium-small, seem to pack quite a punch in the generic package.
The six corvettes, the first of which will be delivered in 2017, the others following at six-monthly intervals, will be armed with a 57mm gun as well as surface-to-air missiles and torpedoes. The 107-m long, 2,400-ton ships will also carry a Eurocopter EC-275 helicopter.
Displacement: 1,100 to 2,500 tonsOh, and cost? Using today's conversion rate and a wee bit of math: €2.14bil=$2.76bil/6=$460 million each.
Length: 90 to 105m
Beam: 13 to 14.2m
Speed: 22 to 27kt
Armament: 16 Mica RF air to air missiles or 16 Aster 15 SAMs
8 Exocet anti-ship missiles or 8 RGM-84 Harpoon anti-ship missiles or 8 RBS-15 Mk.3
It would be interesting to see what comes with that price ... but what it does come with is a multipurpose/multimission patrol corvette. LCS?
All told, Stackley said, the average cost to buy an LCS should be between $430 million and $440 million.That is without a single mission module and it does not include the cost for the first two ships of $637 million for Freedom and $704 million for Independence; so average that up a bit.
If you look at the smaller versions of the GOWIND class (with a lower cost than the Malaysian types - it makes me think of the conversation we had with Bryan McGrath yesterday on Midrats about his ideas on the utility of fast patrol boats.
If you want to be able to run away - LCS is your ship - but being that in this line of work running away isn't an option more often than not - GOWIND or LCS; which ship do you want to take in harm's way? Even more - which would you rather have - 6 GOWIND or 4 LCS?