“Recent defense budget hearings saw a series of heated exchanges between lawmakers and Department of Defense leaders over plans to reach a 355-ship Navy by 2030. This political debate over the path to 355 is focused on precisely the wrong metric. It is a distraction from the difficult but urgent and necessary trade-offs the United States must make to prepare for a far more contested and lethal future security environment.

“In a world where defense budgets will plateau or shrink, the question Congress and the department should be asking is not how will we reach 355 ships or whether this number should be lower or higher, but rather what is the right mix of legacy platforms and emerging capabilities needed to deter, and if necessary, defeat a great power adversary…”

Read the full article here: