USS Freedom USS Independence california

Alongside the F-35 Lightning II fighter, there's hardly a single military program that has been subject to as much criticism as the US Navy's Littoral Combat Ship. The controversial program has resulted in two classes of small surface combatants (shown above, Freedom-class at left and Independence-class at right) along with millions of dollars in budget overruns and production problems.

As William D. Hartung and Jacob Marx of the Center for International Policy see it, there are even more deeply embedded issues that have doomed the LCS program. Those range from a lack of congressional oversight to the proclivity of defense contractors to deliver "unrealistically low" bids to the DOD's unrealistic expectations of what new programs can accomplish.

The two break down the problems with the LCS program at its core, and discuss why the Navy simply doesn't need the compact new ships over at Defense One. Head over and take a look.