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Old October 4 2012, 03:43 PM   #55
J.T.B.
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Re: does a starfleet ship always have a CO with the rank of captain?

Conscious Circuits wrote: View Post
What doesn't quite fit is that the subject of the Enterprise belonging to Decker's squadron never comes up in the various arguments for who has command of the Enterprise, between Kirk, Spock, McCoy, and Decker. I suppose one could try to argue that the Enterprise is from a neighboring squadron, but that doesn't seem too likely, to me, especially with only a 12 ship fleet.

If Decker as squadron commander had been the intent, then it would only have taken a few minor tweaks of dialog to make it fit perfectly with the episode. While technically an argument against the idea, this last point also shows how not too far out at all your idea is. For that reason, it's a pretty good idea.
Those are good points. I wasn't thinking that Decker was actually Enterprise's squadron commander, his taking command was by virtue of his rank alone. The way starships are deployed individually as needed it might make it hard to give a squadron a "territory," SFC might have to pull from different squadrons as needed in trouble spots or to cover for ships in repair, on exploration assignment etc.

I don't think that was ever the intent, it's just my attempt at fitting the situation shown into something that might be plausible. As said above, the real reason for Decker's rank was to make him Kirk's superior and create dramatic tension.

As for a commodore commanding his own ship, if we go way back into US history that was not uncommon. One of the USN's earliest heroes, Thomas Truxtun, was considered for command of the squadron that was being sent to the Mediterranean to deal with the Barbary piracy. He was happy to be the commodore, but thought he should have a captain under him to command the flagship. When the Navy Department said they expected him to do both, he turned down the assignment. Edward Preble didn't think it beneath him to command his own flagship, and went on to make history. Perhaps Starfleet at that time was "lean at the top," with a relatively small number of flag officers and some commodores expected to be part captain, part flag officer.

Justin
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