WASHINGTON DC, The United States – The 11 US superport aircraft which are very important to the US may become useless in a military conflict with Russia or China, writes Business Insider.
According to the publication, these aircraft carriers of the Nimitz class are more like floating cities with aerodromes, because they rise 40 meters above the water line, have a length of 300 meters and a displacement of 100,000 tons.
On board each of these ships, equipped with a nuclear reactor, there are about 80 aircraft and more than 5,000 sailors, marines and pilots. Each aircraft carrier costs more than $4.5 billion. As a result, during a major military confrontation the importance of a giant aircraft carrier and the lives of its crew can be invaluable to the US.
“Carriers have gone beyond mere naval platforms to become near mystical symbols of American national power,” said Hendrix. “They are the symbol of the nation, its greatness, in the way they are perceived as asset of national prestige.”
At the same time, Russia and China are creating missiles specifically designed for the destruction of aircraft carriers and capable of sinking these ships from a distance far beyond the reach of their aircraft. Business Insider indicates that in such a situation, aircraft carriers could not use their power in real combat conditions.
According to estimates by the former special assistant to US Navy Chief of Staff Brian Clark, under the most favorable conditions, the attack group of an aircraft carrier is capable of destroying 450 missiles. But China, for example, can strike 600 missiles at a distance of 1,600 kilometers. However, this still does not take into account the capabilities of Russian anti-aircraft missiles, including hypersonic missiles.
The author of the publication emphasizes that the loss of even one aircraft carrier would cause a shock to the United States. For this reason, and also for fear of losing national prestige and even political power, the President of the United States may lack sufficient determination to use an aircraft carrier in the most dangerous areas, despite the recommendations of the generals.
American experts urge aircraft carriers to be seen as a weapon of war that can be lost, not as mystical unicorns. Although there is an opinion that the potential enemy would not sink American aircraft carriers without an extreme need, fearing a retaliatory attack.
However, while experts discuss the advantages or usability of aircraft carriers, the United States continues to build these huge and expensive air carriers.