Back in March, I wrote “Robot kamikaze submarines shaped like blue whales render navy ships useless?” and asked “Does it make sense to spend $billions on these Navy ships that could be attacked by robots?”
A reader responded “Forget about submarines, anti-ship missiles probably make every surface ship a sitting duck in a war.”
Does the recent drone attack on Saudi Arabian oil facilities (Guardian) prove this reader’s point?
They had the latest and greatest air defense systems says “Did U.S. Missile Defenses Fail During Saudi Oil Attack?”:
The attack revealed the limits of Saudi Arabia’s seemingly sophisticated air-defense system. Riyadh in recent years has spent billions of dollars building up six battalions of U.S.-made Patriot surface-to-air missiles and associated radars. The Patriots didn’t stop the recent attack.
A ship doesn’t have a better air defense system than what the Saudis had, does it? If not, why would we want to spend $10+ billion on a Navy ship when it can be wiped out by a relatively weak adversary, such as the Houthi rebels that are blamed for this attack on the Saudis?
(Also, why should the U.S. fight with Iran over this? Saudi Arabia is not a member of NATO, right? China is not going to deploy its military on one side or the other of this fight. If it doesn’t make sense for China to weigh in, why does it make sense for us?)