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Mass Effect/AEC: ANN News-Alliance Reforms Rank Structure


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ANN News Desk

From Alliance News Desk on the Citadel

April 5, 2196

Alliance Military Reforms Rank Structure

By Amita Quita

PRESIDIUM, CITADEL-The Systems Alliance Navy Defense Council approved the change in rank structure after a recent report concluded that the old system, which merged land base and naval traditions into a single rank structure, caused significant confusion among allied military forces in joint operations during the war. It is part of the sweeping reforms established under the Planetary Defense Authorization Act of 2194, which authorized the expansion of the Systems Alliance military from 2% of available manpower to 5%. Proponents of the new rank system cite among other benefits the integration of existing national and regional militaries into a planet wide defense structure as well as accommodation of  the growing number of colonial militias garrisoning human colonies in the Traverse. The act includes the opening of new service academies and training depots across the globe to accommodate the influx of recruits. Due to Earth’s economic post-war collapse and the role the Alliance military played in maintaining law and order post occupation, it became the single largest employer in human controlled space.

Graduates of the N7 program can opt to have their ranks grandfathered in or switch to the new structure until 2200.

The new Alliance Marine Rank Structure reinstates many ranks (but not all) found in pre-spaceflight land forces:

Alliance Marine Enlisted Ranks and NCOs:

  • Private: Rank given to recruits when entering basic training.
  • Private 1st Class: Rank achieved when graduating from basic training.
  • Specialist: Rank achieved when entering a specialist school of their choice. Often a title is appended to the rank to mark their specialization such as Comm Specialist, Heavy Weapons Specialist, or Drone Specialist. Specialist form the base of most marine fire teams (4  marines per section ) within a marine platoon (between 20-40 marines), operating heavy weapons, platoon communications or drone support.
  • Specialist 1st Class: Senior Specialist in charge of a marine fire team.
  • Corporal: Junior Non-Commissioned Officer (NCO).
  • Sergeant: NCO in charge of a marine squad (6-12 marines) which may include one or more fire teams.
  • Gunnery Sergeant/Tech Sergeant: Senior NCO in charge of coordinating the specialist fire teams within a platoon. Gunnery Sergeants deal with heavy weapons and artillery (mortars, grenade launchers and rocket launchers) while Tech Sergeants supervise communications and drone/mech support.
  • Sergeant 1st Class: The platoon’s senior sergeant and executive officer.

Alliance Officer Ranks:

  • 2nd Lieutenant: Junior Officer and recent graduate of  an Alliance Officer Candidate Course. Marine 2nd Lieutenants command platoons (between 20-40 marines).
  • 1st Lieutenant: Serve as executive officers in a marine company (80-200 marines and up to 32 ground vehicles). A company includes a mixture of infantry, mechanized and reconnaissance platoons or be a specialist company of artillery (called a battery) , engineers (specialist in construction and demolitions), logistics or command (a HQ company within a larger formation such as a battalion).
  • Captain: Commanding officers in charge of a company of marines. Can also serve as an executive officer at the battalion level.
  • Major: Commanding officer of a battalion, which is the smallest all arms formation in the Systems Alliance Marines. A battalion may range from 4-8 companies and may have organic air support in the form of Kodiak Drop Shuttles and Mantis Gunships. These are maintained and operated by naval personnel who work closely with their Marine counterparts and has earned them the name, “Dirt Navy” or “Mud Surfers”.
  • Lieutenant Colonel: Commanding officer of a marine regiment. Pre-war regiments were administrative units that handled logistics, base command and other “rear area” duties. However, the need for greater operational flexibility has brought back the “regimental combat team” concept. RCTs are made up of at least two battalions and have assigned to them a wing of gunships/shuttles for support.
  • Colonel: The most senior field officer rank. Colonels command marine Brigade Combat Teams made up of between 2-3 regiments. BCTs are the largest combat units fielded by the Alliance Marines and often carried into battle on carriers. They serve as the point of the spear in retaking human colonies from enemy occupation as well as garrisoning key installations both in space as well as planet side.

All System Alliance Flag/General officers retain their naval ranks and command both naval task forces and other larger theater command units. Tomorrow we will look at how the reforms have impacted the System Alliance Navy.



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