This Would Be Huge: Would the Air Force Give the U.S. Navy the B-1 Bomber?
Know This: Each Lancer can carry twenty-four long-range stealthy anti-ship cruise missiles.
The Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments (CSBA) released a study suggesting the USAF spends more than it should in order to ensure American remains ‘king of the skies.’ It was also suggested that the B-1 Lancer be retired.
Once again I feel that I must differ with a group of well-funded subject matter experts - the USAF may not need the Lancer to perform its current mission set; but the USN certainly could use this asset in a sea control mission - especially against the PLAN which is becoming much more assertive especially in the waters inside the first island chain.
Currently, each Lancer can carry twenty-four long-range stealthy anti-ship cruise missiles which can be fired from stand-off locations - locations that can be reached quickly given the Lancer's speed. Operating from dispersed hardened locations across the first and second island chains, the Lancer fleet can hold any ship in the PLAN fleet at risk in hours rather than days. It should be noted that both Russia and the PRC have long range 'ex-bomber' aircraft with long-range anti-ship cruise missiles specifically to deny the USN the capability to employ its carrier fleet.