The Force of Water: Top 5 World Navies

Military force has expanded from ground-based combat over the course of history and naval power is one to be feared in warfare. From the US to Japan, the top 5 most-powerful navies use advanced technology and ships capable of mass destruction and transportation.

United States

Since the Naval Act of 1916, America has been expanding their naval force which consists of the best technology the world has to offer and one of the most elite military groups in the SEALS. However, there’s a good reason the US is the strongest Navy on Earth.

Between the aircraft carriers, destroyers, and ships capable of nuclear delivery with intercontinental ballistic missiles, the US Navy has more combined attack force than the next 2 countries combined.

Not only do the Navy’s ships possess extremely destructive power, but the carriers make it possible to deliver a high number of ground troops or aerial support almost anywhere since there are 10 times more aircraft and twice as many troops as the nearest Navy.

Considering the SEALS are expertly-trained in stealth and ground warfare and equipped with the most advanced weapons like the best pistol optics, the United States Navy continues to thrive and develop next-gen methods of power unknown to the rest of the world.


Some lists put Russia over China in naval capabilities, but the People’s Liberation Army has more ships, aircraft, and people in their navy than the former by a lot. Not only that, but they both started building their navies around the same time.

China started really growing their navy after the dissolution of the Soviet Union, but it wasn’t until 2009 that the world saw just how powerful their navy had become. That year was the 60th anniversary of their navy and they chose to reveal several marine-based advancements.

Not only does China have satellites to help their naval combat, but they have nuclear-powered and nuclear-capable submarines that can’t be tracked via enemy satellites and can hit a target with accuracy from miles away.

Since that’s just what they chose to share there’s no telling what else they’ve cooked up, which is why the People’s Liberation Army Navy has overtaken Russia in power on this list.


The Soviet Navy was a force to be reckoned with until the Union’s fall in 1991. Vladimir Putin took command in 1999 and, aside from a brief period of being out of power between 2008 and 2012, has increased their naval power back to a dominant third-place.

While their naval spending has slowed to make way for other military ventures, the Russian force has many of the same ship classes as the US including submarines with nuclear missiles. There’s speculation that the Russian Navy could weaken in the future for budgetary reasons.


India may not be your first thought when it comes to powerful navies, but the Indian Navy has developed a lot in the last decade. Moving up from outdated technology and ships, India would be able to strike anywhere in the region along Asia’s southern half.

Their navy may not have nuclear capabilities or inter-ballistic missiles to hit anywhere on the planet, but the Indian Navy is vast with multiple advanced missiles that can be fired from their ships or submarines.


Since the country is an island, Japan’s constantly developing new ways to combat in the water. Due to increased pressure from China in recent years, the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force has had no choice but to increase their military presence on the ocean.

Not only do they have over 150 destroyers, frigates, and submarines, but Japan has a large aerial combat force on the water. This is largely due to their Izumo-class carrier, which is the most powerful ship in their arsenal and leads the JMSDF.

The Izumo started as a helicopter carrier, but has expanded to also house jets and planes ready to unleash destruction at a moment’s notice. It may have been a reactionary expansion, but Japan has quickly risen to the fifth-most powerful navy on the planet.

The United States holds the title of the strongest navy in the world, Russia’s on a bubble of power, and Japan continues to grow their naval force in response to China, but the 2009 reveal proved that all of these rankings are perceived until we see their true naval capabilities.