Facing China, US precision ammunition stocks would only last a week

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One week ! This is the time it will take for the US Navy and the US Air Force to deplete its stocks of long-range precision munitions in the event of a conflict between the United States and China around the island of Taiwan. .

This is essentially the observation made by the latest report from the American think tank Center for Strategic and International Studies, or CSIS, which also points to the impossibility for American industry as organized today, to meet the needs of a high intensity war against a great power, if the conflict were to come to last, as is the case in Ukraine against Russia.

And in fact, the report presents a rather alarming situation of the reality of the ammunition stocks of the American armed forces, whether it is ammunition arming the ships and combat planes of the US Navy and the US Air Force, but also the stocks of ammunition of the US Army, largely depleted by the support granted to Ukraine for a year, without, again, the American BITD being able to recompose these stocks dynamically.

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This report, while it is in no way a surprise for the American military, which has been ringing the alarm bells on this subject before Congress for several years with the potential return of high-intensity conflicts, also invites us to put some recent debates into perspective, such as the depletion of munitions of the same type. often commented on by the Russian air and naval forces in Ukraine, leading them to rely either on unguided munitions such as smooth gravitational bombs, or on obsolete missiles. s.

In fact, the very real depletion of Russian precision ammunition since the beginning of this conflict is no different from that which would strike the United States and their NATO allies in the event of a similar conflict.

It even seems that Russian manufacturers manage to produce new missiles relatively quickly, such as the Kalibr naval cruise missile, at a rate of 10 to 20 units per month, which, moreover, is perhaps greater than Western production capacities for equivalent munitions such as the French MdCN or the American Tomahawk.

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Because if the CSIS report invites the general staff, but also the Congress and the American industrialists, to increase their industrial production capacities as well as the stocks of ammunition to face a major potential conflict, it also invites to question the relevance the doctrinal model used by Western armies, based on high-performance weapon systems that are also expensive and above all complex, and therefore take a long time to produce.

It is therefore appropriate to compare the modernization capacities announced by Rheinmetall concerning the Leopard 1 and 2 potentially transferable to Ukraine, at an average rate of one or two armored vehicles per week, and the 40 to 50 armored vehicles produced or reconditioned and modernized each month by the Russian Uralvagonzavod factory today, while two modernization lines of T-62M tanks currently being built in Russia, will make it possible to produce around fifty additional medium tanks each month.

LOGO meta defense 70 Military planning and plans | Defense Analysis | Artillery

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