In the aftermath of Operation Desert Storm, the battleships of the United States Navy were decommissioned, and would eventually become anchored museums. The reasons for doing this range from the costs of maintaining the battleships to their being considered obsolete. So now they just serve at tourist attractions.
Considering the various threats to America these days, the Navy needs to seriously consider re-commissioning all its battleships. They might be old, but there are still plenty of years left in them. And contrary to popular belief, battleships are less expensive to maintain and operate compared to other ships (e.g. super destroyers — not that there is anything wrong with super destroyers).
Many people believe that battleships were no longer seaworthy in the aftermath of Pearl Harbor, considering the damage that the Japanese inflicted on them during that attack. But the fact is that only two battleships (the Arizona and the Oklahoma) were beyond any hope of being salvaged, while the other battleships damaged during the Pearl Harbor were repaired and sent back into action — and they have had an impact on naval warfare since then. And keep in mind that Pearl Harbor was in a low state of alert due to a lack of intelligence, which in turn was the result of only a fraction of the Japanese naval code being deciphered. In addition, many other ships at Pearl Harbor were damaged or destroyed, as were many planes.
Battleships are effective warships to this day, capable of taking on any threat from the sea or the air. Their armament and firepower enables them to take a hit and return a hit with compounded interest. In addition, they can also take out any land targets, as indicated at D-Day and in Operation Desert Storm. Battleships are quite useful for amphibious assault operations, as well as taking out anti-aircraft weaponry. And the mere sight of a battleship can have a psychological impact, given its size and firepower.
Of course, the battleships are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to providing America with a strong military. The size of the armed forces need to be restored to the pre-Clinton era, in which the Army had eighteen full-strength light and mechanized divisions, the Navy had 546 ships, and the Air Force had seventy-six flight squadrons. And in order to boost military spending, other government departments and agencies can either be privatized, consolidated, or eliminated — something which I have called for in my previous articles.
This plan is the same thing Reagan did in order to keep America safe. The question remains if it can be done again.