There were lots of ideas and ways the Navy could have brought back the old-school warships.
The Navy Wanted to Take Battleships and Make Them Into Nuclear 'Bombers'
Today the naval gunfire argument rages on. Even in the age of drones and precision warfare there are still occasional calls to bring the heavily manned, imprecise Iowa class back to service. There’s a certain romance to battleships, and having four Iowas sitting around in good condition has beguiled naval enthusiasts and planners for more than 60 years with schemes to bring them back.
In the early 1980s, four Iowa-class fast battleships originally built during World War II—Iowa, Missouri, New Jersey and Wisconsin—were taken out of mothballs and returned to active duty.
(This first appeared several years ago.)
Nearly 900 feet long and displacing close to 60,000 tons, the battlewagons could fire a nine-gun broadside sending 18 tons of steel and explosives hurtling towards their targets.
The battleships were modernized to include cruise missiles, ship-killing missiles and Phalanx point-defense guns. Returned to the fleet, the ships saw action off the coasts of Lebanon and Iraq. At the end of the Cold War the battleships were retired again. All were slated to become museums.