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The Military of the United States

Flag of the United States Army.svg
Flag of the United States Marine Corps.svg
Flag of the United States Navy.svg
Flag of the United States Air Force.svg
Flag of the United States Coast Guard.svg

The military of the United States, officially known as the United States Armed Forces, consists of five of the seven federal uniform services: the United States Army, the United States Marine Corps, the United States Navy, the United States Air Force, and the United States Coast Guard. Approximately 1.4 million personnel are currently on active duty in the military, with an additional 1,359,000 personnel in the seven reserve components. The Commander-in-Chief of the U.S. military is the President of the United States. With a strength of 2.26 million personnel, including reserves, the United States Armed Forces are the second-largest in the world, after the People's Liberation Army of China, and have troops deployed around the globe. As in most militaries, members of the U.S. Armed Forces hold a rank, either that of officer or enlisted, and can be promoted.

State Defense Forces are militia units operating under the sole authority of a state government or governor, and are distinct from the National Guard in that they are not federal military forces. Authorized by state and federal law, State Defense Forces as a whole "may not be called, ordered, or drafted into the armed forces" (of the United States) under 32 U.S.C. § 109 however the subsection further states that individuals serving in the State Defense Forces are not exempt from conscription. Including Puerto Rico, approximately twenty-five states have active State Defense Forces that can be called upon during emergency management and homeland security missions.

United States Department of Defense Seal.svg

The United States Department of Defense (DoD) is the Cabinet organization that controls the U.S. military, headquartered at the Pentagon. The Secretary of Defense also oversees the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the Unified Combatant Commands, and civilian agencies such as the Inspector General, Defense Intelligence Agency, and the National Security Agency. The DoD is the largest employer in the United States.

Washington Crossing the Delaware by Emanuel Leutze, MMA-NYC, 1851.jpg

The military history of the United States spans a period of over two centuries, during which the United States grew from an alliance of thirteen British colonies without a professional military, to the world's sole remaining military superpower as of 2012.

The history of the United States military begins in civilian frontiersmen, armed for hunting and basic survival in the wilderness that were organized into local militias for small military operations, mostly against Native American tribes but also to resist possible raids by the small military forces of neighboring European colonies.

U.S. military news

The Black Beret and ACU uniform

Uniform changes by Army uniform board

After polling Army personnel for input, the Army's uniform board has instituted several changes to the Army's attire. First and foremost, the Black Beret will be relegated to the Army's service dress uniform. Velcro is also being made optional for some closures. Soldiers will be provided the chance to sew patches to their uniform.

The beret has been the standard headgear for the Army Combat Uniform since June 2001. The beret is worn on base and for ceremonies while the patrol cap is worn in the field. Soldiers disliked the beret for its nonexistent practical purpose and the redundancy of having to carry both a beret and hat at all times. “The [ACU] signifies a uniform that should be worn in combat or training for combat, yet a beret doesn’t even make the cut on the deployment packing list,” said one NCO. The Army will now issue only one beret to each soldier for a cost savings of $6.5 million over the lifecycle of the ACU.

Soldiers will still wear their berets with their Army Service Uniform. Soldiers are pleased overall with the appearance of the beret on the ASU. The change does not effect Special Forces soldiers such as the Army Special Forces who wear distinctive Green Berets.

Velcro replaced buttons on the digital ACU replacement for the BDU. Velcro was received as being too noisy, messy, and unprofessional looking by early users after the new ACU uniform was adopted by the Army. Soldiers voiced their opposition to velcro to the Army's Uniform board earlier this year prior to the decision.


Sources: AT:Beret going away?,AT:Army dumps Beret,ANS:Velcro optional, Patrol Cap default
News Archive

Featured article

ToledoStrip.svg

The Toledo War (1835–1836) was the largely bloodless outcome of a boundary dispute between the U.S. state of Ohio and the adjoining territory of Michigan. The dispute originated from conflicting state and federal legislation, passed between 1787 and 1805, which left Ohio's northern border uncertain. The governments of Ohio and Michigan both claimed sovereignty over a 468-square-mile (1,210 km2) region along the border, now known as the Toledo Strip. When Michigan pressed for statehood in the early 1830s, it sought to include the disputed territory within its boundaries, but Ohio's Congressional delegation was able to halt Michigan's admission to the Union.

Beginning in 1835, both sides passed legislation meant to force the other side's capitulation. Ohio's governor Robert Lucas and Michigan's then 24-year-old "boy governor" Stevens T. Mason raised militias and helped institute criminal penalties for citizens submitting to the other state's authority. Both militias were mobilized and sent to positions on opposite sides of the Maumee River, but there was little interaction between the two sides besides mutual taunting.

Selected pictures

AlfredPalmerM3tank1942b.jpg
Credit: Library of Congress, Alfred Palmer
An M3 Lee tank on training exercises, Fort Knox, Kentucky, June 1942.

WikiProjects

Equipment

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The MK19 is a belt-fed grenade machine gun capable of firing five grenades per second. The Mk 19 fires 40mm grenades at a cyclic rate of 300 to 400 rounds per minute, giving a practical rate of fire of 60 rpm (rapid) and 40 rpm (sustained). The Mk 19 is able to lob its grenade at a maximum distance of 2.2km, though its effective range is about 1.6km. The nearest safe distance to launch the grenade is 75 meters. For night operation, an AN/TVS-5 night vision sight can be fitted.

Units and awards

Selected biography

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James "Jim" Bowie (April 10, 1796  – March 6, 1836), a nineteenth-century American pioneer and soldier, played a prominent role in the Texas Revolution, culminating in his death at the Battle of the Alamo. Countless stories of him as a fighter and frontiersman, both real and fictitious, have made him a legendary figure in Texas history.

Born in Kentucky, Bowie spent most of his life in Louisiana, where he was raised and later worked as a land speculator. His rise to fame began in 1827 on reports of the Sandbar Fight. What began as a duel between two other men deteriorated into a melee in which Bowie, having been shot and stabbed, killed the sheriff of Rapides Parish with a large knife. This and other stories of Bowie's prowess with the knife led to the widespread popularity of the Bowie knife.

Major topics

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