As the article below demonstrates a large fleet of combat petrol boats lightly armed are in themselves worthless as a single narrow naval strategy if:
1. The large fleet of combat petrol boats do not have considerable air-cover. Iran has only about 350 old combat aircraft from the 1960's and 1970's....which have enough spare parts to fly the planes for two weeks of intensive combat ONLY. After which the Iranian fleet of combat petrol boats will become exposed ducks in the pond of the mighty, sophisticated and the most powerful air-force on earth, the USA with its 5000 active combat planes with maybe another 5000 combat planes in storage, operating from Iraq, Afghanistan, Turkey, the Persian Gulf and the GCC.
The mullahs installed by the USA/UK in 1979 to spread deviant SHIA Islam and misrule do not believe in INDUSTRIALISATION/MANUFACTURING things. The only things the mullahs believe in are deviant SHIA Islam, and pocketing the huge Iranian petro-$. That is why Iran for 32 years has not been able to mass produce its own indigenous combat planes in large numbers.....500--1000.
2. The other side has significant numbers of submarines.....(The USA has 75), not including the capabilities of the British, French and Israeli navies.
3. The combat petrol craft are not complemented and backed by Frigates, Destroyers, cruisers and aircraft carriers in sufficient numbers. Thus the small combat petrol boats play a necessary role for the navy....but not necessarily the most significant SINGLE role. Iran with a budget of just 3% of GDP on defense cannot embark on an expensive Blue water navy, and is unnecessary given that the main priority for the armed forces of Iran would be to defend Iran's landmass, where historically Iran has fought ALL its significant BATTLES for the last 2500 years.
ALL Persia's great wars have been on land for 2500 years. It would be foolish if the mullah puppets of the USA/UK were now to focus on a great naval battle as the key focal point of Iran's military strategy, after an attack on their nuclear facilities by Israel, as they and their agents keep repeating through the Iranian mullah media. This is further evidence that Iran's defense strategy is written in LONDON, and TEL AVIV.
4. Iran with its fleet of Combat Petrol boats LOST badly in their engagement with the USA in 1988 which persuaded Ayatollah Khomeini to seek peace with Saddam Hussein. That basic situation has not changed except in the future the USA will be backed by the UK, France, Israel, GCC, and many other nations around the world.
China Builds Fleet of Small Warships While U.S. DriftsBy David Axe at Wired.
Ten years ago, the U.S. Navy set about building a new class of small, cheap, numerous Littoral Combat Ships meant to dominate dangerous coastal waters. But after a decade of politics and design-by-committee, the LCS has turned out to be anything but small, cheap and numerous. LCS is the “wrong ship at the wrong time,” retired Navy Cmdr. John Patch wrote.
On the other side of the Pacific, the Navy’s biggest maritime rival, faced with the same requirement for small, cheap, numerous ships, quickly produced exactly that. The result is the People’s Liberation Army Navy’s triple-hull Type 022 missile boat, a “thoroughbred ship-killer,” according to Patch.
To some observers, the PLAN missile boat — or, more to the point, packs of these boats — poses yet another major Chinese threat to U.S. power in the Pacific. Eighty-three Type 022s firing more than 640 anti-ship missiles in quick salvos represent a “serious cause for concern,” according to retired Navy Cmdr. George Root.
To others, the diminutive Type 022s look like mere juicy targets for American helicopters and submarines. They cite the extremely poor combat record of small-missiles boats doing battle with larger vessels and aircraft.
One thing is indisputable. The Type 022 is “a potential success story on how to field small combatants,” Patch wrote. Its merits in combat remain to be seen, but at least the ship exists to perform a combat role. The same cannot be said of the huge fleet of LCSs the U.S. Navy thought it would have by now.
In just seven years, the Chinese People’s Liberation Army Navy has built 83 of the 400-ton Type 022s at an estimated cost of $40 million per ship. And production continues at a high rate in several shipyards. The U.S. Navy, by comparison, has finished just two LCS in the same span of time, each at a cost of more than $600 million.
The Chinese ships sport eight anti-ship missiles apiece plus defensive guns and surface-to-air missiles. The American vessels, lightly armed in their own right, are designed to accommodate “plug-and-play” weapons kits, none of which are complete.
To some critics, even 83 Type 022s are so much fodder for submarines and air power. Small missile-armed boats have fared very poorly in major naval battles — so poorly that the late naval historian Antony Preston said they were “among the world’s worst warship designs since 1860,” according to Navy Undersecretary Bob Work.
Work, back when he was a mere analyst at the Washington, D.C., Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments, summarized the experiences of Iranian and Iraqi “Fast Attack Craft” in combat with U.S. and allied forces in 1988 and 1991. “U.S./coalition forces: 40 FACs destroyed, 2 disabled; enemy: 0 U.S. or friendly forces hit, much less sunk.”
“This data suggests the weakness in focusing in on a simple fleet-on-fleet salvo model in modern naval combat,” Work wrote, “primarily because the preferred method of engaging enemy surface targets is now through asymmetric attacks (e.g., aircraft and submarine attacks against surface vessels).”
In other words, it doesn’t matter how many missile boats you build, if your opponent can bring submarines and missile-armed aircraft to bear against them.
For China, that reality cuts both ways. Considering China’s limited anti-submarine skills and equipment, “U.S. submarines can currently operate freely in Chinese coastal waters,” according to MIT analyst Owen Cote, Jr. But with more and more advanced jet fighters and surface-to-air missiles entering Chinese service, the United States cannot take for granted that its own aircraft can operate safely near the Chinese coast.
Nor could the LCS take on the Type 022 in direct combat and count on winning. The LCS lacks major air defenses and cannot, on its own, defend against large numbers of incoming missiles. Similarly, the U.S. vessel does not carry long-range anti-ship missiles for use against craft like the Type 022.
But a head-to-head comparison of LCSs and Type 022 as warships is not really useful, as neither is specifically intended to fight the other. In wartime, the Type 022s would likely prowl China’s coastal zone as far afield as the Philippine Sea, unleashing missile barrages against American aircraft carriers and their escorting destroyers.
LCS, meanwhile, would be trawling for enemy mines and submarines under the defensive umbrella of nearby destroyers and carriers — maybe. Truth is, no one has quite figured out what LCS is really for.
In any event, what really matters is that Beijing set out to build a large number of small warships, quickly and at low cost — and succeeded. Washington tried the same thing, and failed, big-time.
The dictatorial Chinese government and its command economy are ideally suited to building simple weapons in bulk, albeit at the risk of poor quality control. But that’s not the only explanation for China’s small-ship-building success.
The biggest reason is that China started with a requirement for a small ship, and stuck to it. The U.S. Navy allowed its undisciplined design committees to gradually corrupt and complicate the original concept for the LCS, undermining any hope of building ships cheap or fast.
“I think the real culprit is our fascination with complexity, viewing it as a sign of sophistication,” said Ward. China apparently does not share the same fascination.
That’s the real reason Beijing has the coastal warship fleet America only wishes it had.