The littoral combat ship (LCS) has seen more than its fair share of challenges, but much of the criticism regarding its capabilities and limitations is more myth than fact. Here are seven assertions that are not accurate.
1. World War II-era ships were better armed and more capable.
A warship from World War II might at first appear to be more survivable than her modern-day counterparts because of armor and the simplicity of her weapons and sensors. Appearances, however, can be deceiving. Even the heaviest ships of the 1940s were vulnerable to sinking by one-shot, powerful weapons. The Japanese Long Lance Type 93 torpedo and the German Fritz X tv-guided glide bomb both scored notable successes against enemy warships with one or more hits. World War II–era ships had limited radar and communications gear and primitive fire-control equipment for their guns. Their torpedoes were straight-running and relatively short-ranged. The one advantage they perhaps had is in the simplicity of their equipment, which supported manual operation in the event of damage to the fire-control system—although manual gunfire is notoriously inaccurate.