09:40 GMT +324 July 2019
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    A US Navy member mans his gun as a Cobra helicopter hovers during the Bright Star joint war games that involves 30,000 troops from 12 countries off the coast of Egypt's northern El-Alamein region (file)

    US Naval Operations Chief: 'Our Advantage is Shrinking'

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    The US Navy must expand its fleet to improve readiness against adversaries such as Russia, Iran and China, Chief of Naval Operations Adm. John Richardson said.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — Richardson explained the changes he is advocating for are needed because the current state of the security environment is more fast-paced and increasingly competitive.

    "Our advantage is shrinking," Richardson told Fox News on Monday. "We must reverse this trend."

    In the next 30 years, the US Navy proposes to create a 355-ship flee with 12 aircraft carriers, 104 large surface combatants, 52 small surface combatants, 38 amphibious ships and 66 submarines.

    US Navy spokesperson Kara Yingling noted that in fiscal year 2017 the Navy expects to build 13 and retire six ships.

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