Accession Number:



The Vietnam War: A Case Study for Strategic Sealift in Large-Scale Conflict

Descriptive Note:

[Technical Report, Monograph]

Corporate Author:

Army Command and General Staff College

Personal Author(s):

Report Date:


Pagination or Media Count:



The objective of this study is to provide recommendations to improve the United States strategic mobility triad. This is done through a comparative analysis of strategic sealift in support of the Vietnam War against the United States current strategic mobility posture. The intent is to analyze a point in US history that provides a parallel to the challenges the United States may face in a future near-peer conflict. The paper draws on lessons learned from history, compares the historical examples to current capabilities, and provides recommendations in anticipation of challenges facing the United States. The key lessons learned focus on insufficient strategic sealift fleet capacity, inadequate fleet operational readiness, and port congestion caused by a scarcity of adequate ports. Recommendations include recapitalizing and growing the US Transportation Command and Maritime Administration fleets by divesting high maintenance vessels and purchasing new or used strategic sealift vessels. The US Army and Navy must grow additional Joint Logistics Over-the-Shore capabilities to provide more ports of entry and bridge the gap between strategic mobility and operational sustainment.


Subject Categories:

  • Humanities and History
  • Military Operations, Strategy and Tactics

Distribution Statement:

[A, Approved For Public Release]