- THE NATIONAL INTEREST - Sep 22, 2020 -
These newer, higher-tech vessels will help deter Beijing and keep the peace.
The second U.S. Navy America-class amphibious assault ship is now ready for war after arriving at its home port in San Diego, California, a move which further fortifies the service’s emerging, modernized amphibious assault strategy.
The Navy plans to sail the F-35-armed ship around South America soon as a way to refine its preparation and readiness for combat deployment.
The strategy is multi-faceted and intended to include a new mix of air-power projection with drone or unmanned systems operations. Amphibious assault operation preparations are every bit as much of the Navy’s areas of emphasis as ever, yet they continue to take on new tactical forms as more technologies emerge. For example, the USS Tripoli brings a strengthened aviation component to amphibious attack possibilities to leverage the added capacity of the F-35B and upgraded Osprey aircraft. Like the first America-class amphibious assault ship, the USS America, the USS Tripoli is built without a well-deck to allow for greater hangar space for aircraft. The concept is to leverage the added range, air support and attack possibilities made possible by advanced aviation.
“The USS Tripoli is designed to accommodate the Marine Corps’ future Air Combat Element (ACE) including the F-35B Lightning II and MV-22 Osprey,” a Navy report states.