USNI News website has an article reporting on comments made by Adm. Phillip Davidson, Commander Fleet Forces Command. Here’s a sampling.
“The Navy should prepare its forces for specific geographies and threat environments they may face, rather than for a generic “anti-access/area-denial environment.”
“Adm. Phil Davidson said at the annual Surface Navy Association national symposium that the fleet faces several potential adversaries, each with their own tactics to limit U.S. Navy sea control, and that fleet training and preparation ought to address each specifically.”
Well, I guess that kind of craps all over the generic AirSea Battle concept. It also, indirectly, faults the generic approach to countering our enemies by countering their technology alone. That trend was the basis for so much, done so poorly, for so long, by Navy leadership and which has resulted in generic platforms that aren’t anywhere near as useful as they could be (I’m looking at you, F-35 and LCS).
“Davidson said that two-thirds to three-quarters of the platforms in today’s Navy will still be in the fleet 10 years from now. Since new planes and ships won’t be the solution to combating the varying tactics of potential adversaries, Davidson said training would be important. He emphasized the need to boost the complexity of pre-deployment training events …”
Well, what do you know? What has ComNavOps harped on repeatedly for the last few years? Training, more training, realistic training, and training – plus training. And also tactics. The simplistic, set-piece exercises that have passed for tactical training for years are worse than useless because they instill a sense of competence that combat will show is completely unfounded. Now, apparently, the Navy has finally woken up to the pathetic state of training and readiness that permeates the fleet.
Welcome aboard Adm. Davidson. I guess you haven’t been reading this blog, huh? If you had, you’d have come to this stunning realization that complex, realistic training is vital a long time ago. Still, better late than never, I guess, to have your “Come to ComNavOps” moment.
Is this movement due to CNO Richardson’s influence? I’ve been markedly unimpressed with him so far but if this is his doing then I’ll give him full marks. We’ll have to wait and see.
(1)USNI News, “Fleet Forces: Navy Should Train to Specific Threat Sets, Environments”, Megan Eckstein,
January 14, 2016,