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Rethinking procurement...

 As someone who has spent a decade on the analytical side of the DoD procurement practices, this resonates.

It actually reflects some of what I believe the Navy intended with LCS, except that we can't resist the "mission/requirements creep" that culture and massive senior egos, allied with hungry contractors and their allies in Congress, that causes the encrustation of "stuff" and extends development/procurement timelines and expands costs.

The reform has to come from the uniformed senior leadership.

Here the Danes have emerged as a clear leader by developing two classes of highly innovative ships designed to operate as how they will be used: carrying out coalition operations while equipped to swing from high-end to low-end missions.

The three Iver Huitfeldt frigates and two Absalon flexible support ships share a common, large, highly efficient hull to yield long-range, efficient but highly flexible ships that come equipped with considerable capabilities — from large cargo and troop volumes and ample helo decks for sea strike and anti-submarine warfare — in a package that’s cheap to buy and operate. The ships come with built-in guns, launch tubes for self-defense and strike weapons, and hull-mounted sonar gear, and they can accept mission modules in hours to expand or tailor capabilities. The three Huitfeldts cost less than $1 billion.

Every major Euro army managed to field a new SP howitzer and the French managed a wheeled howitzer in addition, while we fiddled around with that bloated monster Crusader, to end up with what, one prototype that sits rotting quietly in the sun at the Field Artillery museum at Fort Sill?  Just as one example.  And let us not head down into the money sump that was FCS (which did at least produce useful spin-off products).

The whole article is here.



While that is all very true, not all is sweetness and light with European defense procurement either as the sagas of the British FRES program or the multinational A400 and Eurfighter Typhoon projects show.