(Great Power War) While the U.S. Air Force can certainly move a limited amount of troops and equipment vast distances when they are needed in a hurry, the Pentagon has to rely on the Navy’s sealift capability in order to move enough personnel, weapons, and war material to distant combat zones to fight wars.
And, according to recent assessments, that’s going to be a problem if/when large amounts of troops and tanks and beans and bullets are needed quickly in some Eurasian theater of war.
The Navy, working with the Transportation Department’s Maritime Administration, has a fleet of 65 roll-on/roll-off (RO/ROs) ships that permit large pieces of equipment like tanks and mobile artillery to be loaded without having to be disassembled first.
The problem is, many of these ships are old — so old, in fact, that the Navy and the Transportation Department is having a time trying to find enough mariners qualified to operate their steam engines.
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