Hole wrote:1. a LA or Virginia always stays with a carrier or amphibious group. It will stay 100 or 200km in front of the group or circle it and try to find enemy subs to prevent themfrom launching missiles. Just like a MiG-31 would try to soot down a bomber before it can launch his weapons.
2. the first LA´s were pure sub hunters. Just like the Burkes were developed for AAW and ASW (against russian bombers and subs launching missiles). At the end of the 80´s they needed a new role and put a few Tomahawks onto the ships/subs. Then the 688I was developed with 12 silos and now the LA III or Virginia class has even more silos but in a large conflict there main task would be to hunt strategic weapon carriers and defend own battle groups.
3. Arrow compared the numbers of the Virginia with the Yassen. I replied that it isn´t that easy. You have to compare their roles, that´s why I mentioned all the possible targets (Bulava, Poseidon and Kaliber/Zircon carriers) for the Virginias. Now someone brought up the LA class and french subs and so on.
Western block (including Australia, Japan, Sweden): roughly 180 - 190 subs (around 80 with nuclear propulsion)
Russia: some 60 - 65 subs (around 30 - 35 nuclear)
China: roughly 70 subs (around 25 nuclear)
Compared to the 80´s, when Russia had 375 subs and the rest of the world (including Amiland and China) had around 550.
As an American, I would like to think that we do not factor the NATO allies fleet more than 20% in our ability to go on offense or defense. Countries as allies are like spouse's at the divorce time, true character comes out.....so we can more than match Russia's maximum reach in numbers and tech but where we lack at the moment is having some decent policy setters that has balls to optimize and oversee our engagements like where to fight, why we fight and what we are achieving. To me that is the problem more than any wonder weapons that Russia may throw at the world. The thing is decent strategists work with in the envelop of mutual respect for opponents and weigh their options...