Riverine: our Stupidity is Ukraine's Gift
unlearning and unself-aware
In the first year of this blog ~18-yrs ago, we blowtorched the Navy for throwing away our riverine capability forcing the Army in Iraq to "reacquisition" fishing boats, and generally surrendering a primary logistics path - rivers - to the enemy.
We covered the rise and rebuilding of riverine in our Navy, and if you followed the tag, the ahistorical stupidity of our Navy at once again throwing it away due to having the attentions span of a squirrel.
Wherever there is war with any significant river systems, having a mature, well equipped riverine force is essential to controlling that logistics corridor and having the ability to defend from and project force quickly using the water.
This is military 101, but again, we have a problem with institutional maturity to support the "unsexy but important."
At least we are giving the Ukrainians what we are foolishly throwing away.
Over at Naval News they have the full report.
For the record, the United States’ State Department approved a possible Foreign Military Sale (FMS) to the Government of Ukraine of up to 16 Mark VI Patrol Boats and related equipment for an estimated cost of $600 million back in June 2020. The U.S. Department of Defense on 5 January 2021 awarded SAFE Boats International a US$ 19 million order to start production of Ukraine’s first two Mk VI Patrol Boats. Eight months later NAVSEA awarded SAFE Boats International a US$ 84 million contract modification for the delivery of six more Mk VI patrol boats, with an option for an additional two boats.
Mark my words; we will - again - regret with blood and treasure giving up this capability.
“We can do it using autonomous river patrol boat thingys”￼ - Said by someone in the 5 sided puzzle palace
All you need for river patrol is a thousand 16-foot john boats, and a bunch of m 16's and some bass boats with a mid-weight machine gun.