Translated and subtitled by Eugenia

Source:

The USA has discontinued the development of Tomahawks, because they turned out to be not nearly as great as Trump described them. However, serious problems are seen not just in cruise missiles but in the entire American weapons industry.

Hello, my friends.

Today we are going to talk about the American weapons industry.

Just recently I recorded a 5-minute piece about how Russia and China are destroying the US weapons industry. They actually have already ruined it, and whoever is interested, can follow the reference in the description.

Recently Roman Romanov reminded us that the US stopped the production of Tomahawks. You can watch that, too, but I will tell this story again. What’s interesting is that the US decided to stop production of Tomahawks and their development right after they used them to attack Syria, when, according to Trump, “all rockets hit their targets”.

Once in a while, I will record videos about the US military-industrial complex (MIC) simply because it is our potential adversary. I will also talk about the US army on the basis of mostly Western sources, so that nobody can accuse us of being a Kremlin propaganda outlet.

Now I will cite Internet journal Defence-1, which discusses Tomahawks and their problems. I am quoting: “Like any weapon, Tomahawks at some point would need to be replaced, and the development of adversaries’ technology require that we don’t waste any time. The main direction in developing faster, deadlier and stealthier weapon is towards Long-Range Anti-Ship Missile (LRASM) and Next generation Land Attack Weapon (NGLAW). Planned to come online in 2025 and 2030, respectively, the successors to Tomahawks may be super- or hyper-sonic, more precise, flexible, and effective even in complicated electronic warfare and resistant to anti-rocket defenses. But this is on paper”, as Defence-1 writes.

“However, new sophisticated weapons for the Navy have an unpleasant habit to arrive late. That is why we should not stop purchasing Tomahawks or let the production stop. When we don’t have aim-oriented design for future purchase of weapons, it makes sense to continue financing and modernizing systems that work, until we have completely tested, integrated, and stored arsenal of new rockets, especially when we use them up faster than planned”. That’s what the American journal writes, not Kremlin propaganda.

A little adventure in Syria proved that Tomahawks are essentially scrap metal, even when the adversary uses old Soviet anti-rocket weapons. Having figured out that these weapons are useless against Russia or China, they pin their hopes on new weapons.

Now I’m going to present a few facts how this strategy of developing new weapons in the US has failed and how much money was wasted on it. The commissioning of the newest aircraft carrier “Gerald R. Ford” was delayed until 2022, according to Bloomberg – again, not Kremlin propaganda. According to the agency, the reason was the defects and failures that the sailors discovered during tests. Its cost makes it the most expensive ship in history. Bloomberg indicates that the budget of $13 billion turned out to be insufficient to get this aircraft carrier ready.

Too bad the US does not have Alexey Navalny to investigate where the state money goes.

The construction of “Gerald R. Ford” started on one of the Newport, VA, shipbuilding plant in 2009 by Huntington Ingalls Industries Inc. It is the only builder of atomic aircraft carriers in the US, a subsidiary of one of the main MIC companies Northrop-Grumman. This aircraft carrier was launched in November 2013, i.e., a long time ago. But its commissioning was delayed to 2022.

Let’s investigate why this happened. The commissioning, i.e. placing the ship in active duty, was planned for 2014. However, this did not happen because of the defects in its weapon systems, the new catapults to launch aircraft, and the air finisher, which helps planes land on the carrier. The defects were planned to be corrected by the fall of 2016, but in the summer of 2016 it was announced that the new deadline is 2017. Until the problems are solved, they would limit the combat capabilities of this carrier. This was stated by the Director of Pentagon Operational Test and Evaluation Michael Gilmore. The air finisher was fixed in 2017, but its price tag increased from promised $301 million to $961 million, or more than three-fold. Then the first successful test-landing of a Navy bomber FA-18 was performed.

After that, new defects were discovered, in the propulsion system and in the elevator, which was supposed to bring bombs and rockets up to the deck. The supplier of the propulsion system General Electric acknowledged that the tests revealed production defects. Well, there are many examples like that, but Trump still promises to build 12 aircraft carriers like “Gerald R. Ford”. He does not specify any timeline, so we don’t know when this is going to happen. It’d cost a lot of money, though. The Western media also expressed concerns about it.

That is what an American military expert said (on Russia Insider portal) Jacob Dreizin has to say.  His opinion is valuable because he has work experience not only in the Pentagon, but also in the US Congress and in lobbying outfits of the US MIC. So, he has insider knowledge. He doesn’t mince words when talking about it. Here is his quote, enjoy: “As US Army veteran and long-term Beltway resident, including 4.5 years in Arlington, VA, where the concentration of defenders of Pentagon contractors is likely higher than anywhere else in the US, I think that their opinion about the US MIC is wrong (referring to what he said about the US weapons being trash as compared to the Russian ones).

Without beating around the bush, he states what many understand, that the US MIC has long been unable to produce durable effective and universal weapons. Take the assault rifle M16 (famous American assault rifle), here is what he has to say about it: “My experience with this piece of trash that it has problems in the presence of even small amounts of sand. Without air and artillery support and huge advantage in numbers on your side, you are dead meat against anyone with a pistol that works in the presence of sand”.

About tanks M1 Abrams, which is the main combat tank of the US Army. “The engine is a gas turbine, like in aircraft, except that is it used in a desert, even during sandstorms, which makes it extremely unreliable, requiring complicated service. Of course, Abrams was developed for combat in Germany, where there is no sand, but during Iraq campaign sand damaged turbine ventilators so badly, that more than a thousand of these engines, costing millions each, we had to take off and send for storage or repairs”.

He believes that the US MIC exists only because the US dollar is the world reserve currency. “When you have world reserve currency, you can afford this and many other things. The whole world is paying for your wars. But defects and inefficiency is a fact”.

He believes that the key problem is excessive complexity of design, which costs lots of money, citing as an example helicopter Comanche as an example, which is supposed to replace legendary Apache. From 1983 to 2004 this development cost the taxpayers over $10 billion. Now I am quoting again the same expert: “More than $10 billion for nothing. Not a single Comanche was ever delivered for use in any Army unit. So, where did the money go, if nothing was produced except for a few prototypes? Did they spend them on PowerPoint presentations? My brain refuses to accept that.”

“Can you imagine what Russia or China could have done for these $10 billion?”, – Dreizin is asking. Even we can’t really imagine that. We can fantasize, but I am sure we’d use such money more effectively. But we don’t have world reserve currency, so we can’t print it.

Dreizin indicates what the problem is, saying that it’s the political system in the US, which allows to lobby the interests of military contractors. “Some of the blame is on our political system, where MIC corporations buy politicians, and then get profits in the form of contracts, regardless whether these contracts make sense”. We are familiar with that problem, too, let’s be honest.

In former years when the blueprints were produced with pencil on paper, and the budgets were many times smaller, airplanes like SR-71 and Blackbird were created, but now Uncle Sam cannot make a heavy rocket engine, not to mention a good helmet for F-35. “As a technical civilization we are degenerating”, – acknowledges this expert. He reminds with bitter irony that for countless billions the US can only send its army against illiterate savages armed with coconuts.

I once more recommend watching my 5-minute video about why Russia and China are to blame for all that is happening to the US Army. Because it also contains quotes from Western sources.

The expert (Dreizin) says that when push comes to shove, the US aircraft carrier leaves Persian Gulf -“runs away” as he puts it – after discovering that Russians have cruise missiles that can fly more than 1,500 km. I think, after Putin’s presentations they will run away even faster.

The humorous element is that Jacob Dreizin mercilessly mocks US vassals. He uses the term “former Ukraine”, and makes fun of the fairy tales of one little but proud Baltic state about the Russian threat.

A great American, too bad there are few like him. Quote: “John McCain and other broken records in and outside of Pentagon keep repeating the mantra that we don’t have enough assets to repulse nonsensical Russian incursion into parasitic inconsequential Lithuania (currently led by a long-time communist) or mention some other scenario of military games of the 1990s, which somehow crept into public consciousness as a great threat to peace in the whole world”.

He believes that the US hegemony is over, and the only way is now down. Why is he the only one like that? If you know other experts like that, let me know, let’s talk about them. These people are great and have inside knowledge.

Let me give you one more example. Task&Purpoise portal named the US coast guard Littoral Combat Ship “floating rubbish pile”. It stated that this project has been running for years and cost tons of money, but the results are pathetic. “After 16 years and multi-billion expenditures, the US Navy may have finally acknowledged that its Littoral Combat Ship program looks like a miserable failure” – writes the source. Let me remind you that Pentagon planned to purchase 355 ships of this class. Now the military has doubts.

You can also watch my recent video about the Ukrainian armed forces, Ukraine Navy, and Ukrainian marines, who just recently received new berets. In that video I am telling you that now the Ukrainian marines use American inflatable boats, which were given to Ukraine because it has only one landing ship, and it is 50 years old.

Not only did the US Navy cut the number of planned Littoral Combat Ships, ordered from Lockheed-Martin and General Dynamics in 2014 out of concerns over the vessel’s performance, but the review of the US Navy in 2016-2017 as a part of Operational Testing and Evaluation of Pentagon, published in January 2018 revealed serious structural problems of programs Freedom and Independence. Three out of four produced ships are now in repair docks. A lot of problems were identified, from those with radars to limited defense against anti-ship rockets. In addition, the design is such that one hit can kill their ability to move and combat readiness as well as the ability to repair the damage. Not a single of these LCS designs can survive high-intensity combat, as the official Pentagon report says.

They don’t disclose the amount of taxpayer money spent on this project and given to Lockheed-Martin and General Dynamics. The sum is said to be comparable with that spent on yet another failed MIC project, F-35.

Why am I telling you all that? We often discuss possible military encounter between Russia and the US, or Russia, China, and the US. Many of our liberals and those who like to say that Putin lost everything say that we cannot compete with the US because our military budgets are incomparable. The US military budget is more than $900 billion per year, whereas Russian military budget is 10-times less, in fact, less than one tenth of that.

The key issue is not the amount of money, but the efficiency of its use. The US MIC has many problems, which I discuss in different videos, which we should watch again from time to time and put them all together. Then we can see the big picture, rather than bits and pieces. Last time I discussed problems in the US Air Force, and how many accidents it had. Now we talked about the Navy, helicopters, etc. All of this was based on American media and opinions of American experts, not Russian sources.

Please let me know whether you are interested in this kind of info, whether I should search for it in the future. Also, send me links to the experts: its interesting to read them and then tell you what they say.

All the best to you. Goodbye.

The Essential Saker II: Civilizational Choices and Geopolitics / The Russian challenge to the hegemony of the AngloZionist Empire
The Essential Saker: from the trenches of the emerging multipolar world