Facing a rising tide of capable, potential adversaries, the U.S. Navy’s surface force has ordered a course change in tactical training with a renewed focus on sea control. A big part of this effort centers on enhancing the lethality of multi-mission surface warships by synchronizing and massing fires to hold adversaries at risk at greater ranges than ever before. Yet this change will also require a shift in the way we think—about tactics, training, and personnel. And if we are to truly achieve a more lethally distributed surface force capability in which every ship that floats can fight, and fight well, this change must go beyond how warfare commanders employ ships and aircraft and focus on—and reinvest in—tactical proficiency at the individual warfighter and watch-team levels. As we embrace a culture of “tactical excellence by design” as opposed to “by choice and happenstance,” the surface warfare community is aligning training and tactics to secure “warfighting first” as our number-one priority.
'Tactical Excellence by Design'
Surface warfare is honing its training-and-tactics edge to make ‘warfighting first’ the new normal.
By Rear Admiral Jim Kilby, U.S. Navy