Sea Basing promises to make the oceans a permanent base for conducting military operations. The implications will reach farther than just the naval services. Not only will there be changes in the way the Army projects power, the United States will need to make sure its diplomatic efforts do not suffer because it has less presence on the ground.
One of the most significant pillars of "Sea Power 21" is Sea Basing, which places at sea to a greater extent than ever before the firepower, maneuver forces, command-and-control systems, and logistics capabilities needed to project and sustain military operations. 1 At its heart is the idea of secure, mobile, and networked afloat bases, supported by an improved sealift capability for the joint force. 2 Sea Basing has the potential to enhance dramatically the U.S. armed forces' strategic and operational effectiveness, but there is ongoing debate regarding what form this evolving concept should take. Most of this debate has involved only the Navy and the Marine Corps. It is useful, however, to look at Sea Basing from perspectives outside the naval services, especially with regard to its potential impact on the operations of ground forces—the Army in particular—and the ramifications for U.S. diplomatic efforts.