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Introduction

Military service mark of the United States Army.png

The United States Armed Forces are the military forces of the United States of America. It consists of the Army, Marine Corps, Navy, Air Force, and Coast Guard. The President of the United States is the Commander-in-Chief of the U.S. Armed Forces and forms military policy with the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) and U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), both federal executive departments, acting as the principal organs by which military policy is carried out. All five armed services are among the seven uniformed services of the United States.

From the time of its inception, the U.S. Armed Forces played a decisive role in the history of the United States. A sense of national unity and identity was forged as a result of victory in the First Barbary War and the Second Barbary War. Even so, the founders of the United States were suspicious of a permanent military force. It played a critical role in the American Civil War, continuing to serve as the armed forces of the United States, although a number of its officers resigned to join the military of the Confederate States. The National Security Act of 1947, adopted following World War II and during the Cold War's onset, created the modern U.S. military framework. The Act established the National Military Establishment, headed by the Secretary of Defense; and created the Department of the Air Force and the National Security Council. It was amended in 1949, renaming the National Military Establishment the Department of Defense, and merged the cabinet-level Department of the Army, Department of the Navy, and Department of the Air Force, into the Department of Defense.

The U.S. Armed Forces are one of the largest militaries in terms of the number of personnel. It draws its personnel from a large pool of paid volunteers. Although conscription has been used in the past in various times of both war and peace, it has not been used since 1972, but the Selective Service System retains the power to conscript males, and requires that all male citizens and residents residing in the U.S. between the ages of 18–25 register with the service.

As of 2017, the U.S. spends about US$610 billion annually to fund its military forces and Overseas Contingency Operations. Put together, the U.S. constitutes roughly 40 percent of the world's military expenditures. The U.S. Armed Forces has significant capabilities in both defense and power projection due to its large budget, resulting in advanced and powerful technologies which enables a widespread deployment of the force around the world, including around 800 military bases outside the United States. The U.S. Air Force is the world's largest air force, the U.S. Navy is the world's largest navy by tonnage, and the U.S. Navy and the U.S. Marine Corps combined are the world's second largest air arm.

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
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Battle between Monitor and Merrimac (Hampton Roads).png

The Battle of Hampton Roads, often called the Battle of the Monitor and the Merrimack, was a naval battle of the American Civil War, famous for being the first fight between two powered iron-covered warships, or "ironclads", the USS Monitor, an entirely new design, and the CSS Virginia . The principal confrontations took place on March 8 and March 9, 1862 off Sewell's Point, a narrow place near the mouth of Hampton Roads, Virginia.

The naval battle lasted two days. The first day saw the debut of the Virginia and was fought without the Monitor. Havoc was wreaked upon the wooden Union ships and the day ended with the Confederate side at a decided advantage. However, on the second day the Monitor arrived and initiated the famous action known as the duel of the ironclads. Although the battle was inconclusive, it is significant in naval history. Prior to then, nearly all warships were made primarily of wood. After the battle, design of ships and naval warfare changed dramatically, as nations around the world raced to convert their fleets to iron, as ironclads had shown themselves to be clearly superior to wooden ships in their ability to withstand enemy fire.

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Equipment

M107 1.jpg

The M107 Long Range Sniper Rifle is a semi-automatic .50 BMG sniper rifle. It is a new designation of the M82 Special Applications Scoped Rifle in the US military. The M107 is used for traditional sniper tasks, but is especially useful for long-range, counter-sniper, and anti-materiel roles over more traditional smaller bore sniper rifles.

There are no significant differences between the Barrett M82A1M/M82A3 and the M107. However, production M107s appear to have the addition of a rear monopod and there are rumors of internal improvements as well.

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Selected biography

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Benjamin Franklin Tilley (March 29, 1848 – March 18, 1907), was a career officer in the United States Navy who served from the end of the American Civil War through the Spanish–American War. He is best remembered as the first Acting-Governor of American Samoa.

Tilley entered the United States Naval Academy during the height of the Civil War. Graduating after the conflict, he gradually rose through the ranks. As a lieutenant, he participated in the United States military's crackdown against workers in the wake of the Great Railroad Strike of 1877. During the Chilean Civil War of 1891, Tilley and a small contingent of sailors and marines defended the American consulate in Santiago, Chile. As a commander during the Spanish–American War, Tilley and his gunship, the USS Newport, successfully captured two Spanish Navy ships. After the war, Tilley was made the first acting-Governor of Tutuila and Manua (later called American Samoa) and set legal and administrative precedents for the new territory. Near the conclusion of his 41 years of service, he was promoted to rear admiral, but died shortly afterwards from pneumonia.

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