Accession Number:



Distributed Maritime Capability: Optimized U.S. Navy-U.S. Coast Guard Interoperability, a Case in the South China Sea

Descriptive Note:

Technical Report

Corporate Author:

Naval Postgraduate School Monterey United States

Personal Author(s):

Report Date:


Pagination or Media Count:



This thesis asks whether or not the U.S. Navy USN and U.S. Coast Guard USCG are sufficiently prepared to operate together if conflict escalates in an area of forward-deployed operations and investigates opportunities for naval interoperability to be bolstered if required. Today, the USN faces naval power constraints, specifically ship-force deficiencies. Comparatively, competitors like China are modernizing their naval forces, which are on a path to surpass U.S. naval power. The conclusion is that the USN and USCG are not yet adequately prepared to operate together if conflict arises abroad. One solution is to optimize USNUSCG interoperability through enhancing the USN distributed lethality concept to distributed maritime capabilitiesthe use of the USCG as a force multiplier. The distributed maritime capability model is based on an examination of USCG capabilities during conflict as well as independent and joint naval operations. China is assessed to be a dominant aggressor in the South China Sea that poses a threat to regional security and economic stabilitymajor U.S. national interests. Distributed maritime capability is demonstrated by applying the concept to fisheries enforcement in the South China Sea in order to suppress the Chinese Maritime Militia CMM, which is identified through this thesis as Chinas primary means of coercion and the major threat to stability in the region.

Subject Categories:

  • Economics and Cost Analysis
  • Military Forces and Organizations

Distribution Statement: