In Dire Need: Why the Coast Guard Needs the LCS

CIMSEC – In the spring of 2021, defense-minded internet message boards and social media were ablaze at headlines that the U.S. Navy would be decommissioning the first hulls of the decade-old Littoral Combat Ship (LCS). A chorus of “good riddance” posts and thought pieces followed. Though the Navy maintains it intends to keep using both Independence and Freedom variants of the LCS, it is no secret that the program has been beleaguered with class-wide mechanical issues. As many in naval thought circles lament and debate what the Navy will do in the way of near shore combatants in contested waters, a unique opportunity has emerged for the U.S. Coast Guard.