A reader writes:
Pace Robert Kaplan, the future LCS ships won't really be any better equipped to fight off "swarm attacks" of small powerboats. Aside from being SLIGHTLY more agile (it's still a 400 foot ship), the LCS ships actually have a significantly smaller armament. Its close proximity surface-to-surface defenses utilize the exact same weapons found on larger vessels (e.g. Mk 110 57mm machine guns). The only new weapon on the LCS is the NLOS-LS missile system, which isn't exactly suited for swarm defense (anymore than any other existing missile system). In short, if a few Iranians want to drive up in motorboats and attach a bomb to the ships hull, there's little the ship can do but try what every other ship out there can do.
The reason the Iranians got so close to our ships last year was because there was no existing rule of engagement that allowed our ships to open fire. This isn't 1830. Our ships don't need to let motorboats get as close as they did. With orders to fire in hand (as there would be in a Amero-Iranian war), Iranian ships would be destroyed before they're even visible. This says nothing of the huge air-superiority we'd enjoy. In an air-to-sea war, Iran's improvements mean nothing.
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