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Old October 11 2012, 02:15 AM   #90
J.T.B.
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Re: does a starfleet ship always have a CO with the rank of captain?

137th Gebirg wrote: View Post
I'm not entirely sure about the responsibilities of mid-grade admirals. The fleet admirals usually serve on the Joint Chiefs. Perhaps there are some BBS users in the Navy who could answer this more accurately than I, but there are different commands. Surface warfare, submarine command, SEAL deployment, etc., also divided up into regions, like Pacific Command, Atlantic Command. I would hazard to guess the Rear Admirals (lower half) command individual battle groups and task forces. Rear Admirals (upper half) command the regions and zones. Vice Admirals may act as a conduit from the Fleet Admirals and Joint Chiefs to the Rear Admirals to distribute orders and information. Again, I'm pulling this pretty much out of my ass, but if I were to guess at the job descriptions for the different grades, that's how I would envision it.
Well before WW2 it was pretty straightforward for the US Navy, there were four admirals (the CNO in Washington, the CinC Pacific Fleet, CinC Atlantic Fleet and CinC Asiatic Fleet) and three vice admirals (Commander, Battle Force, Commander, Scouting Force and Commander, Aircraft, Battle Force). Everything else was real admirals. After the war started the number increased, but basically you had four star admirals as fleet CinCs (US, Atlantic, Pacific) and major forces (Europe, South Pacific, Central Pacific...). Vice admirals were in charge of numbered fleets (4th, 7th, 8th...), major naval districts or sea frontiers, major area commands, major type commands (Air Force, Pacific Fleet; Submarines, Pacific Fleet...), major bureaus (Personnel, Aeronautics, Medicine, Yards and Docks...) and as deputies to four-star admirals. In Dec. 1944 three admirals were promoted to fleet admiral, which bumped a few vice admirals up to admiral. In 1945 the numbered fleet commanders were promoted to admiral, too. At the end of the war there were 3 fleet admirals, 10 admirals, 37 vice admirals (1 medical, 1 civil engineer), 219 rear admirals (15 medical, 14 supply, 1 chaplain, 1 dental, 10 civil engineer), and 127 commodores (7 medical, 5 supply, 8 civil engineer).

Today, the last figures I can find for the navy show: 10 admirals, 37 vice admirals, 74 rear admirals (upper) and 123 rear admirals (lower).

The admirals are fairly straightforward. They are split about evenly between joint and navy-specific positions:
  • Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff
  • Chief of Naval Operations
  • Vice Chief of Naval Operations
  • Director, Naval Nuclear Propulsion
  • Commander, U.S. European Command
  • Commander, U.S. Pacific Command
  • Commander, U.S. Special Operations Command
  • Commander, U.S. Fleet Forces Command
  • Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Europe
  • Commander, U.S. Pacific Fleet

Vice admirals are a more diverse bag. A lot of staff and joint positions, and you can tell from the titles the kind of huge bureaucracies involved. They change frequently, but here is a fair sampling of current/recent three-star admiral posts:
  • Chief of Naval Personnel
  • Chief of Navy Reserve
  • Commander 3rd Fleet
  • Commander 5th Fleet
  • Commander 6th Fleet
  • Commander 7th Fleet
  • Commander 10th Fleet/US Fleet Cyber Command
  • Commander, Joint Task Force National Capital Region Medical
  • Commander, Naval Air Forces
  • Commander, Naval Air Systems Command
  • Commander, Naval Sea Systems Command
  • Commander, Naval Surface Forces
  • Commander, Navy Installations Command
  • Commander, Submarine Forces
  • Director, Defense Logistics Agency
  • Director, Defense Security Cooperation Agency
  • Director, Navy Staff
  • Director for Operations, Joint Staff
  • Deputy Chief of Staff, Capability Development, NATO Supreme Allied Commander Transformation
  • Deputy Commander, US European Command
  • Deputy Commander, US Fleet Forces Command
  • Deputy Commander, US Southern Command
  • Deputy Commander, US Strategic Command
  • Deputy CNO, Fleet Readiness and Logistics
  • Deputy CNO, Information Dominance
  • Deputy CNO, Integration of Capabilities and Resources
  • Deputy CNO, Operations, Plans & Strategy
  • Deputy CNO, Warfare Systems
  • Deputy Director for Strategic Operational Planning National Counterterrorism Center
  • Deputy to the Commander for Military Operations, United States Africa Command
  • Judge Advocate General of the Navy
  • Naval Inspector General
  • Principal Deputy Director of Cost Assessment and Program Evaluation, Office of the Secretary of Defense
  • Principal Military Deputy to the Assistant Secretary of the Navy (Research, Development, and Acquisition)
  • President, National Defense University
  • Program Executive Officer, F-35 Lightning II Program
  • Superintendent, U.S. Naval Academy
  • Surgeon General of the Navy
  • United States Military Representative, NATO Military Committee

Justin B.
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