Originally Posted by BlueEagle1
In my opinion aircraft carriers will never have the beauty and feel of raw power that battleships possess. It is true that a modern carrier's air wing will always outmatch the power of a battleship, but the carriers themselves lack the intimidation of a battleship.
I can't agree... factually, the entire lesson of WWII was that battleships were albatrosses and that the only ships that really WERE intimidating were carriers ( and, today, nuclear submarines)
Jutland proved that naval gun platforms were expensive and short lived in the actual press of battle...
Both the Bismark and the Yamato proved to be huge wastes of resources that had zero impact on the war.
And the attack on Pearl Harbor, which decimated our battleship fleet and left our carriers intact proved that not having the battleships was essentially a non-issue in crippling US naval power.
The battleship was not maneuverable enough to serve as a decent escort to the real jewels of the fleet- (the carriers) and so they spent the majority of WWII acting as offshore barrage platforms... little more than an artillery battery.
And even in its heyday... it was analogous to modern arms races that have no real impact because the weapons themselves turn out to be semi useless.
As powerful as the Bismark was- it was taken out by a couple of BIPLANES.
The recommissioned battleship was okay for Littoral warfare... but we have not really needed much of that capability since the marine invasions of WWII.
In the first gulf war they had to bend over backwards to figure out how they could employ the battleships, just so the navy would not look foolish for having them around... And, oddly- it turned out they made lousy missle platforms... but that artillery barrage was their only economical use...
And when the turret on one of these machines exploded... the Navy finally faced total decommission... why? because the technology to make the 16 inch guns had died with the men who invented it... and no existing company could manufacture replacements.
Sorry... Like all the dreadnoughts... they were born of a colonial era for shows of force and great for intimidating the colonials... but they never turned out to be all the decisive in any war.
We won against japan because we could afford to replace the carriers they hit... and they could not afford to replace the carriers we hit.
the battleships had nothing going for them but mystique they never really deserved.