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Old October 1 2012, 02:59 PM   #18
J.T.B.
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Re: does a starfleet ship always have a CO with the rank of captain?

Actually, Kirk was an Admiral right up to the end of Trek 4.
No, he stepped down from Admiral to Captain in TMP and got re-promoted sometime before TWOK.
Well Kirk told Decker that his was a "temporary grade reduction" to commander, so most likely Kirk's was also. So he wouldn't have to be promoted again, he would just automatically go back up to admiral after his assignment on Enterprise was over.

It's an odd twist of events, but so is the idea of sending a Rear Admiral to command a single ship on a high-risk mission like this. How often does that sort of thing happen in real naval history?
Not very often, but there's no real reason it couldn't happen. What would not happen would be the odd rank reduction; there's no reason the admiral couldn't command the overall mission and the captain remain in command of the vessel. Which is what happened in the very next movie.

Justin
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