I love the new paint job on the USS FREEDOM (LCS 1). Full disclosure: I’m somewhat biased when it comes to this class of ship.

Most people logically think that this is an effort to make the ship harder to see on the water, but that’s not completely true. Back in WWI, ships were given extreme camouflage paint jobs all the time that they called “Dazzle Camo.” The goal wasn’t necessarily to hide the ship. It was more to confuse the enemy with regards to which direction the ship was traveling. This was obviously back in the day when the best way to figure out a ship’s course was by observing it. When you looked at a ship with a Dazzle paint job, it was extremely difficult to find the bow. Therefore, it was nearly impossible to target the other ship or even know if the other ship was targeting you. You can read much more about Dazzle Camo (and see some pictures where the paint is so extreme, it’ll cross your eyes) here.

Of course, at this time, you can take the cheapest radar off the shelf and get all of the course and speed information that you want about another ship in about 5 seconds, so the purpose has changed. Now, in my humble opinion, it just looks really cool.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *