You did... and then bet the bank on Ukrainian loyalty.
Lord Darwin has no favorites.
No we didn't. The BFS and Caspian commanders were whining about the state of their fleet so in order to reequip them money was diverted to corvette projects. The biggest drain on resources was on the nuclear deterrence but that had to be paid for, corvettes did not.
There is no more ideology to enforce, no more clients (ungrateful ones I might add) to protect, no trade lanes you use that need controlling and no resources you don't have at home already.
All your enemies are are right next door in Europe and maybe (big maybe) across Sea of Japan. And none of them require blue water navy to deal with.
And yet we are in Venezuela, Syria, Vietnam... ect. We must be able to keep the sea lanes open if war breaks out. Corvettes will not do.
Attack is the secret of defence; defence is the planning of an attack. - Sun Tzu
USSR at the apex of it's might could not come close to having even a single nuclear carrier even with that insane suicidal military budget.
They could barely build and operate helicopter carriers.
How on Earth do you expect Russia to have one especially on a budget not compiled by by geriatric commies with 8 years of elementary school? And I mean that as a compliment. Remember what killed USSR?
The only thing preventing us is lack of shipyards to build it. We have the nuclear propulsion to run it and the fighters to fill it. Developing a steam catapult is child's play. If the funding had been devoted to it we would already have one with the second on the way. The Soviet naval doctrine was having a fleet of nuclear subs and surface ships were only there to protect them. It was a complete defence doctrine that is still being applied today but now it is centered on corvettes and very few submarines. With the addition of cruise missiles we finally have a capability to project force from the sea but we don't have a naval doctrine that takes advantage of that.
Russia is not USA, you are not flanked by two oceans and not bordered by two glorified provinces.
Having Coast Guard (FSB) patrol EEZ is a luxury that USA has but you don't, never had and never will.
Russia is closer to France, they have a blue water navy and a huge EEZ, bigger than ours actually. We should have what they have times two.
Corvettes is what you can build and more importantly what you need.
And even that is a stretch.
All this hassle with building corvettes and people want carriers?
It's like wanting to have a Lamborghini when you can barely pay for and build a tricycle. All the while living next to dirt road...
What is a corvette to a NATO carrier strike group? Target practice...
No you couldn't.
Navy was swimming in cash until recently and all they managed to build were those hated corvettes.
No matter how much money you dump on carriers you will always be 3rd rate in that department, that is if you don't bankrupt yourselves (again) first.
And even if you build one (fat chance) what will you use it for? Fly airplanes around potential hostiles which are all within range of land based aviation?
More money down the latrine...
The capital expenditure maintaining the legacy fleet that should have been replaced with the state armaments plan is the cost of everything I stated, including the two carriers. If the industrial policy had focused on one design per class, and spent the money perfecting that design with commonality, the shipyards would have been cranking out ships left and right. The money down the latrine was keeping that old junk in service and not having commonality for new ships that should have had Russian designed engines from the start.