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Australia to Get Nuclear Submarines


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Is this the day when French woman asks in HMS Victory: "Are these actual cannonballs used in Trafalgar?" Answer: "No, ma'am, your navy still have those..." 


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WASHINGTON -- The U.S. Department of Defense will order just one Virginia-class nuclear-powered attack submarine in fiscal 2025, a drop from the two-per-year pace of recent years.

The decrease, announced Monday, reflects U.S. shipbuilding bottlenecks. The two private shipyards that produce the Virginia class -- General Dynamics and Huntington Ingalls Industries -- face mounting backlogs due to limited capacity and personnel shortages.

... The delay of the Virginia class exposes the strains of the AUKUS defense pact as well. Together with the U.K., the arrangement seeks to provide Australia with nuclear-powered submarines. The U.S. has promised to sell Australia three Virginia-class submarines, in 2032, 2035 and 2038, with the option of providing two more. The idea is to strengthen deterrence in the Indo-Pacific region with key allies, but Navy officials have raised concerns about the impact AUKUS will have on shipyards.

The two-boats-per-year pace only addressed U.S. demand. To cater to AUKUS, the U.S. needs to construct 2.33 submarines per year, according to the Congressional Research Service. The actual delivery rate has averaged 1.2 boats per year for the past five years

... "If such a cut is actually enacted, it will remove one more attack submarine from a fleet that is already 17 submarines below the Navy's long stated requirement of 66," Courtney said. "Given the new commitment the Department of Defense and Congress made last year to sell three submarines to our ally Australia, which I enthusiastically support, the ramifications of the Navy's proposal will have a profound impact on both countries."



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Which illustrates something ive long been saying, the US simply doesnt have the shipbuilding capacity to make good on the numbers of 688's and Ohio's as they leave service. There is a good case for saying investing in Aukus is a good idea, just so the US can get yard capacity abroad for making Virginia components.

Oh I know, 'Must be built here' yada yada yada...

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