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Star Trek Movies I-X Discuss the first ten big screen outings in this forum!

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Old January 7 2014, 04:10 AM   #1
Sran
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Was Spock Kirk's Adjutant at Starfleet Academy?

Kirk's role at the outset of The Wrath of Khan was Commandant of Starfleet Academy, where he presided over the training of cadets and other young officers (Saavik, Croy, etc.) Spock was Enterprise's commanding officer while the vessel was assigned to training missions, but did he also serve as Kirk's adjutant?

No other officer is seen providing Kirk- a flag officer- with administrative assistance or help in personnel evaluations. It may be that such an officer was absent for the Enterprise's mission, but as we've seen other high-ranking officers serve as aides to flag officers (Sisko to Ross; Benteen to Leyton), was such a role intended for the Vulcan?

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Old January 7 2014, 05:17 AM   #2
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Re: Was Spock Kirk's Adjutant at Starfleet Academy?

Sran wrote: View Post
Kirk's role at the outset of The Wrath of Khan was Commandant of Starfleet Academy, where he presided over the training of cadets and other young officers (Saavik, Croy, etc.)
Was that established? He was a flag officer on an inspection, but it was my impression that his actual position was vague.

Spock was Enterprise's commanding officer while the vessel was assigned to training missions, but did he also serve as Kirk's adjutant?
Traditional practice is for flag officers to have their own assigned staff, who are not tied to a particular vessel. I would say it's unlikely (and I personally don't like the sound of "army" terminology in Starfleet) but Spock could have filled that capacity in effect, if not officially.
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Old January 7 2014, 06:21 AM   #3
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Re: Was Spock Kirk's Adjutant at Starfleet Academy?

Was the Enterprise the only training ship? If not, it could simply be that the long-standing professional relationship between Kirk and Spock made it logical for Spock to help out in these ways. If Kirk had been dealing with some other training ship, it would have that captain who was involved in these duties.
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Old January 8 2014, 03:00 AM   #4
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Re: Was Spock Kirk's Adjutant at Starfleet Academy?

J.T.B. wrote: View Post
Was that established? He was a flag officer on an inspection, but it was my impression that his actual position was vague.
It's implied but never stated. I suppose he could still have been Chief of Starfleet Operations, and Starfleet Academy would have fallen within his responsibilities if there were no permanent commandant. What we know for sure is that he was helping Spock train a group of cadets who were assigned to Enterprise.

Timewalker wrote: View Post
Was the Enterprise the only training ship? If not, it could simply be that the long-standing professional relationship between Kirk and Spock made it logical for Spock to help out in these ways. If Kirk had been dealing with some other training ship, it would have that captain who was involved in these duties.
I doubt if Enterprise was the only ship training cadets, as we've seen cadets serving at other posts throughout Star Trek (but not necessarily all together). Kirk may have traveled aboard other vessels but remained in a supervising role and not taken command as he did with Enterprise, as the situation that occurred at Regula One and forced his hand was highly unusual.

What's more, the training cruise seemed to be a sort of reunion of the former Enterprise crew. Uhura was there, as were both McCoy and Sulu (who was originally slated to command Excelsior once the mission was over). As far we know, only Spock and Scotty remained aboard whenever the crew dispersed after the V'Ger mission (though it's unclear when that happened).

I've always wondered if McCoy had been between assignments given his comments to Kirk about assigning an experienced crew to the ship instead of using it to train cadets and junior officers. Maybe he was hoping to get back aboard (though I've a hard time believing Spock wouldn't want him there, as they were friends in spite of their endless arguments and bickering).

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Old January 8 2014, 02:50 PM   #5
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Re: Was Spock Kirk's Adjutant at Starfleet Academy?

Sran wrote: View Post
It's implied but never stated. I suppose he could still have been Chief of Starfleet Operations, and Starfleet Academy would have fallen within his responsibilities if there were no permanent commandant. What we know for sure is that he was helping Spock train a group of cadets who were assigned to Enterprise.
Or he could have been the flag officer in charge of whatever command Enterprise was part of. I have never been convinced that Enterprise was a permanent training vessel in ST2, as opposed to a serving vessel which was being temporarily used for training. Historically, active US Navy cruisers and battleships were commonly used for midshipmen "summer cruises."

As far as what Kirk was doing there, it never seemed to me that he was actively involved in the training. It seemed more like a high-level inspection tour.
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Old January 8 2014, 05:29 PM   #6
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Re: Was Spock Kirk's Adjutant at Starfleet Academy?

Sran wrote: View Post

It's implied but never stated. I suppose he could still have been Chief of Starfleet Operations, and Starfleet Academy would have fallen within his responsibilities if there were no permanent commandant. What we know for sure is that he was helping Spock train a group of cadets who were assigned to Enterprise.
Seems odd to me that the Commandant of Starfleet Academy would have access to files pertaining to the Genesis Device.

J.T.B. wrote: View Post
Or he could have been the flag officer in charge of whatever command Enterprise was part of. I have never been convinced that Enterprise was a permanent training vessel in ST2, as opposed to a serving vessel which was being temporarily used for training. Historically, active US Navy cruisers and battleships were commonly used for midshipmen "summer cruises."
I'm with you here...

Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan wrote:
McCOY: Admiral? Wouldn't it be easier to just put an experienced crew back on the ship?
Seems to me that the Enterprise is going to be sent back out at some point based on McCoy's question.
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Old January 9 2014, 04:28 AM   #7
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Re: Was Spock Kirk's Adjutant at Starfleet Academy?

BillJ wrote: View Post
Sran wrote: View Post

It's implied but never stated. I suppose he could still have been Chief of Starfleet Operations, and Starfleet Academy would have fallen within his responsibilities if there were no permanent commandant. What we know for sure is that he was helping Spock train a group of cadets who were assigned to Enterprise.
Seems odd to me that the Commandant of Starfleet Academy would have access to files pertaining to the Genesis Device.
I think it was an issue of security clearance, and Project: Genesis probably was accessible to all flag officers.

I actually like the idea of Kirk being the Commandant in Star Trek II and the Enterprise being assigned to the Academy as a cadet training vessel. Sure, it may have been only a temporary stint for the ship between deep-space deployments or it may have been her duty in her final years of service.
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Old January 9 2014, 06:28 AM   #8
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Re: Was Spock Kirk's Adjutant at Starfleet Academy?

I don't think it was the theatrical version, but in one of the cuts of TWOK didn't Chekov sort of imply that Kirk belonged to "Starfleet General Staff" when communicating with Marcus? I don't know exactly what this means, but to me it brings to mind something along the same lines as a cabinet position of "minister without portfolio".
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Old January 9 2014, 01:40 PM   #9
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Re: Was Spock Kirk's Adjutant at Starfleet Academy?

"General staff" is a term usually applied to allarmy and air force generals. The term has also been used to describe all admirals within a navy too, but the terms "the Admiralty" or "flag officers" are more commonly used.
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Old January 9 2014, 03:44 PM   #10
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Re: Was Spock Kirk's Adjutant at Starfleet Academy?

Avro Arrow wrote: View Post
I don't think it was the theatrical version, but in one of the cuts of TWOK didn't Chekov sort of imply that Kirk belonged to "Starfleet General Staff" when communicating with Marcus? I don't know exactly what this means, but to me it brings to mind something along the same lines as a cabinet position of "minister without portfolio".
Good point. He says the order to hand over Genesis comes "direct from the General Staff," and then when pressed for "who gave the order" names Kirk.

C.E. Evans wrote: View Post
"General staff" is a term usually applied to allarmy and air force generals. The term has also been used to describe all admirals within a navy too, but the terms "the Admiralty" or "flag officers" are more commonly used.
No. A general staff is a group of officers in charge of planning for, organizing and administering an entire armed service. The "general" part comes from being responsible for the entire service rather than just a part; it has nothing to do with the rank of general. Most US Army general staff officers are lieutenant colonels and colonels.

Navies have also had general staffs, often called the "naval staff." The term "naval general staff" is usually applied as the English translation for the organization in the Imperial German and Imperial Japanese Navies.

The collective term for generals is "general officers," the equivalent for admirals is "flag officers." "Admiralty" is a government department for administering a navy, equivalent to Navy Department or Ministère de la Marine.

At any rate, it wouldn't make sense for Chekov to use the term as an overall collective because it would imply that orders came from Starfleet as the result of a poll of all admirals.
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Old January 9 2014, 05:08 PM   #11
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Re: Was Spock Kirk's Adjutant at Starfleet Academy?

J.T.B. wrote:
C.E. Evans wrote: View Post
"General staff" is a term usually applied to allarmy and air force generals. The term has also been used to describe all admirals within a navy too, but the terms "the Admiralty" or "flag officers" are more commonly used.
No. A general staff is a group of officers in charge of planning for, organizing and administering an entire armed service.
No, that's just one definition (and even then one subject to interpretation). It's also been used to describe generals and admirals, the support staff of a single high-ranking officer, or the senior staff of a certain division or facility.
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Old January 9 2014, 07:05 PM   #12
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Re: Was Spock Kirk's Adjutant at Starfleet Academy?

C.E. Evans wrote: View Post
No, that's just one definition (and even then one subject to interpretation). It's also been used to describe generals and admirals, the support staff of a single high-ranking officer, or the senior staff of a certain division or facility.
I guess I'll ask for a citation on that; has "been used" doesn't mean correctly or even commonly used. And as I said before, in the context it wouldn't make sense for Chekov to use it that way, anyway.
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Old January 9 2014, 07:49 PM   #13
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Re: Was Spock Kirk's Adjutant at Starfleet Academy?

J.T.B. wrote: View Post
C.E. Evans wrote: View Post
No, that's just one definition (and even then one subject to interpretation). It's also been used to describe generals and admirals, the support staff of a single high-ranking officer, or the senior staff of a certain division or facility.
I guess I'll ask for a citation on that; has "been used" doesn't mean correctly or even commonly used.
No, it just means that it's a term that's been (and continues to be) used in different contexts, but more commonly it just describes generals and admirals.
And as I said before, in the context it wouldn't make sense for Chekov to use it that way, anyway.
Sure, it does. Chekov could have just been describing the key administrative admirals in the fleet, which can include those in charge of major divisions, theatres of operations, departments, and even core facilities (such as Starfleet Academy, Starfleet Medical, etc).
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Old January 9 2014, 07:54 PM   #14
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Re: Was Spock Kirk's Adjutant at Starfleet Academy?

It still doesn't make any sense that the Commandant of Stafleet Academy would be in the loop on Genesis. There's no practical reason for someone in that position to have access. I doubt the Commandant of the U.S. Naval Academy is in the loop on the latest Top Secret Research to the point that he can access files on it.

I could be wrong.
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Old January 9 2014, 08:08 PM   #15
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Re: Was Spock Kirk's Adjutant at Starfleet Academy?

C.E. Evans wrote: View Post
No, it just means that it's a term that's been (and continues to be) used in different contexts, but more commonly it just describes generals and admirals.
So, no citation on "general staff" being "usually" used for all generals in a service.

And as I said before, in the context it wouldn't make sense for Chekov to use it that way, anyway.
Sure, it does. Chekov could have just been describing the key administrative admirals in the fleet, which can include those in charge of major divisions, theatres of operations, departments, and even core facilities (such as Starfleet Academy, Starfleet Medical, etc).
But that's not what you said before, you implied it was referring to all admirals.
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