Naval War College Review


Throughout history, despite the influence of Alfred Thayer Mahan’s concepts, continental European and Asian navies have had a simple choice to make either to create a balanced fleet to engage another balanced fleet at sea and defeat it in one or more “decisive battles” or to take an “asymmetrical approach,” creating an “unbalanced” navy, able to prevent the enemy from achieving sea control and to keep one’s own vital sea lines of communication (SLOCs), if one has any, untouched by the enemy’s naval forces.