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Our defense minister claims the sub fleet we bought from the British 14 years ago, which has been in dry-dock for most of that time, and won’t hope to be fully operational until at least 2016, is a capable force. That may well be true. However, it takes less than 18 years (1998 to 2016) to build a submarine, so I’m curious why we’re continuing down this path without (seemingly) properly investing in it.
If we really want these subs mostly for patrolling the arctic waters, maybe it would be better to invest in unmanned subs working with a surface fleet. Do we really expect that 4 old subs would actually be useful in real combat situations? I’m not saying there’s no value in these subs, but it’s definitely true that we’ve extracted almost zero value from them so far, 14 years in, so let’s start getting value or cut our losses.