Talk:Military Ranks (RDM)/Archive1
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Isn't Cally referred to as a Specialist at some point? --Redwall 21:32, 29 August 2005 (EDT)
Definitely. There's a time when the Chief tells the "Specialist" to go do something. -QuintusCinna.
Well, that just fracks up the whole thing then. Not only do we have Cally in the wrong place and we're missing a rank, but it's an Army/Air Force rank for a Fleet member. :( (On the plus side, Specialists are E-4s though IIRC.) --Redwall 21:38, 29 August 2005 (EDT)
Let's be open with the Chief's use of "specialist". It might have been relative to her MOS, though I doubt it. Such as tech specialist, deck specialist, things of that sort. In the military we often called them specialists too, though I do believe, just like you, that the chief was meaning it in the context of rank. --QuintusCinna
Adama ≠ Fleet Admrial
Noticed something while browsing and thought I might mention it...
On the page for Military Ranks (RDM), the supposition is that the rank of Commander (i.e. Cdr. Adama) is equivalent to a US Navy Rear Admiral. In my extensive reading, I have found that there are a few reasons why Commander is not equal to a Rear Admiral or Commodore.
Battlestar Groups are roughly analogous to Carrier Battle Groups, the current major organizational format for the US Navy. CBGs are commanded as an entire body by a Rear Admiral Lower Half, while the carrier itself is commanded by a Captain (O-6). It is possible that, while the vessel was in lay-up at the Scorpion Ship Yards, the Pegasus was part of a functioning BSG. This would explain why Adm. Nelena Cain is in command of the Pegasus. Meanwhile, the Galactica was quite alone at the beginning of the mini-series, and on the verge of decommissioning and conversion. Adama's rank could be considered analogous to an O-6 since the Rear Admiral LH in charge of BSG-75 would have moved to another BSG while Commander (Captain) Adama took the Galactica into retirement. In a footnote in an earlier draft of the page, it was stated that since Adama had the authority to assume command of the fleet (Miniseries), he would have to carry flag rank. This was likely a plot device, and it was never necessary to justify it, since no other Colonial Fleet vessel survived (excepting Pegasus, which was most likely already gone). In the modern US Navy, it would be highly improbable for the Admiral in charge of a CBG to assume command of the entire Navy.
- I expect this would be more useful on Talk:Military Ranks (RDM) than on Joe's talk page. --April Arcus 21:24, 17 October 2005 (EDT)
How Many Admirals
Although Nagala and Cain are both referred to as simply "admiral", I don't think that's presents strong evidence for them all being of the same rank, distinguished only by seniority. In the real world, both a one-star and four-star Admiral are referred to as simply "Admiral", unless a precise distinction must be made - not the case in the heat of combat, when Nagala's identity and rank would have been quite well known anyway. Furthermore, RDM's comment that Cain was only one promotion up from Commander strongly indicates that there were additional ranks above her.
The methodology of this page to date has been to identify BSG universe ranks with their (rough) NATO-equivalents. This seems sensible to me, since no precise overview of the BSG rank system has been given yet, and it makes sense to evaluate new information with regard to an existing military structure with which the show's creators are familiar. --April Arcus 15:39, 7 December 2005 (EST)
- I agree. I can't imagine a "promotion date" hierarchy working very well for establishing seniority between fleet commanders. I don't know how common inter-fleet operations would be, but there would be a lot more friction if equal ranked admirals were issuing orders to each other. While a twelve-admiral "quorum of twelve" would be a very democratic and fair sounding concept, military thinking tends to prefer hierarchy to committee, especially in cases where decision need to be made quickly. I wonder if Cain's insignia might provide any insight into the ranks (and whether there might be higher ones). --Steelviper 16:28, 7 December 2005 (EST)
We never see Cain referred to as a "rear admiral" either. Looking at the insignia on the page, there's only one Admiral insignia anyway—there is absolutely no evidence anywhere that rear admirals and vice admirals even exist in Battlestar Galactica. Moore himself only mentions one grade of "admiral" in his blog entry. So essentially what's happening is that people are making things up and pretending it's in the canon just to make Colonial Fleet correspond perfectly with the US Navy.
In response to "I can't imagine a "promotion date" hierarchy working very well for establishing seniority between fleet commanders.", the fact is, the real military uses that hierarchy consciously. For instance, the seven US generals and admirals promoted to five star rank in 1944 were deliberately promoted on consecutive days—Leahy in the 15th, Marshall on the 16th, King on the 17th, MacArthur on the 18th, Nimitz on the 19th, Eisenhower on the 20th, and Arnold on the 21st of December—to allow for such a hierarchy.
More importantly, Colonial Fleet was probably a small and shrinking military force anyway, largely because they had nothing to do—the colonies were united and there was no foreign threat for over 40 years. Furthermore, there can't have possibly been that many ships in the fleet anyway, if Galactica and Pegasus were the only survivors. Four grades of admiral exist are necessary when you're the United States Navy and you have 300 ships. We have no evidence Colonial Fleet was that large. Philwelch 22:17, 7 December 2005 (EST)
- 1.) I can't speak for the source on those insignia myself - did User:Winterfell every say where he found them?
- 2.) We know there were at least 120 battlestars, next to the US Navy's 12 aircraft carriers, so I have difficulty with that argument.
- At which point? The Cylon war was 40 years ago. Philwelch 22:56, 7 December 2005 (EST)
- 3.) I don't think we're pretending anything is in Canon here, and if it looks that way to you, I don't mind making a clearer distinction. The fact is simply that we don't know much about the Colonial Navy, and that comparing the ranks observed on the show to the ranks of a well-documented force is an instructive exercise. --April Arcus 22:28, 7 December 2005 (EST)
- Your clarifications look good to me, Philwelch. --April Arcus 22:34, 7 December 2005 (EST)
I don't know if it means anything but in Pegasus, the DRADIS screen after they identify the Pegasus has two stars next to the Peggie's symbol. Maybe she's a two-star admiral. --Talos 22:17, 25 December 2005 (EST)
- Here's what I mean. Note the stars (they are more blob-like here but are stars) next to the Pegasus on the right and how the identically targeted Galactica has none. Also, note that the Pegasus can ID the Gal's Vipers but the Galactica doesn't show the four Pegasus Viper's callsigns. --Talos 15:54, 28 December 2005 (EST)
- Veering off topic, but Kat is apparently flying "Viper 24" in that scene. Have we seen two-digit numbers used for Vipers elsewhere? --April Arcus 16:08, 28 December 2005 (EST)
- Not that I know of. I was wondering about this earlier, maybe the two digit number is shorthand eg. her Viper is 5624NC or something. --Talos 18:34, 28 December 2005 (EST)
- Veering off topic, but Kat is apparently flying "Viper 24" in that scene. Have we seen two-digit numbers used for Vipers elsewhere? --April Arcus 16:08, 28 December 2005 (EST)
- I'm assuming this is a moot point here now, but I'll chime in anyway. Of the 120 or so Battlestars that were commissioned at the time of the attacks on the colonies, I'd say we're missing some information to make an educated guess as to who commands what. Starbuck mentioned 'fleet', so I'm working under the assumption that the word 'Battlestar' is used to describe a military ship in general, rather than a specific type of ship (Sort of like the USS in US Navy ships) . That said, I'm guessing there are also more than two classes of Battlestar (Mercury class and whatever class Galactica belongs to can't be the only two),and they're somehow organized into a type of numbered fleet command structure. An Admiral would command the numbered fleet, Commanders would command the smaller support craft and so on down the line. Above the numbered fleets is someone like Admiral Nagala from the mini, who commands the ENTIRE fleet and directly supervises the numbered fleet admirals. In Galactica's case, she was being prepared for decommissioning anyway, so she didn't fall under a numbered fleet, instead reporting directly to Fleet Headquarters on Picon in the mini. I know it's a bit long winded, but hopefully that sort of explains why there aren't 120 or so admirals in the fleet running around giving orders...:) Joemc72 15:07, 18 January 2006 (EST)
- I think you're misunderstanding things. A battlestar is a type of ship. It's like saying destroyer, or aircraft carrier, though, so there can be different classes of battlestar. The name comes from what role it's intended to play in combat (a combination, actually, but a carrier being one of those roles). I believe our understanding is that a Battlestar Group (BSG) was a battlestar and its accompanying support fleet, very similar to the US Navy's Carrier Groups. So an admiral would probably actually be in charge of a few BSGs (with a Commander like Adama being in charge of his BSG alone) and you might have an admiral above that controling a group of lower admirals (think CINCLANT or CINCPAC) and you might not... Then you've got Nagala at the top telling everyone what to do. Anyway... a battlestar is not just any combat ship, a BSG is not a group of battlestars (but a group of ships with a battlestar in lead), and, no, all my ranting doesn't get us any closer or farther from the question of how many Admirals the COlonial Fleet had before the Attack. --Day 15:44, 18 January 2006 (EST)
- I think you and I just both said the same thing! And I wholeheartedly agree, we're no closer to a solution...Joemc72 15:51, 18 January 2006 (EST)
- For clarification, Cain is referred to as a Rear Admiral, but only on the DVD release of the episode Pegasus --Madbrood 08:58, 12 September 2006 (CDT)
I'd advocate getting rid of the conjectural insignia. It would be nice if we could find actual screen captures to use instead of Winterfell's (admittedly nice looking) drawings, for credibility's sake. --April Arcus 18:22, 11 December 2005 (EST)
- The conjectural ones, yes. The ones that seem to correspond with screen captures we do have, I think it's safe to keep. Is there anyone here with HD captures of the episodes? If so that would help greatly. Philwelch 18:53, 11 December 2005 (EST)
- You know what I think? We should have both. I really appriciate the clarity of the illustrations. Let us have both, side-by-side, so that readers may verify the accuracy, but also clearly see what the insigniae are. --Day 21:12, 11 December 2005 (EST)
- Speaking of this, Major on down in the officers insignia are very hard to see. Can we get versions with more contrast or better colors or something?--Redwall 22:25, 11 December 2005 (EST)
- After this last episode, we finally got a good look at Major, and the one on here is close, but is off a little. Same can be said about the one for Captain too. On that one, the middle peak /\ needs to be closer to the top of the insignia. On Major, their is equal (more than shown) space between all of the peaks /\.--AdmPense 21:25, 23 February 2006 (CST)
- I just recently made some BSG insignias for one of my forums. You can have a look at them here: my blog (sorry for the german page, it's article #8 I'm talking about). I still have the source files (just the insignias without the decoration around them) in 256x256. If you are interested in them for this wiki, please let me know. --Geckomind 12:07, 6 April 2006 (CDT)
Is it just me, or in Lay Down Your Burdens, pt 2, did it seem like Adama was wearing insignia different from the displayed admiral insignia shown here? It almost looked like a chevron with a point at the top, and the shot (which i think was most prominent when Adama was on Colonial 1 w/ Pres Baltar) seemed very distinct, rather than the edged diamond shown here. I cannot distinctly remember the insignia Roslin handed Adama, but I am almost certain that those aren't what I saw. Jake Conhale 12:16, 14 March 2006 (EST)
Tyrol & Hadrian
Small point - Chief Tyrol and Sergeant Hadrian are assigned equivalent ranks in the table. During his arrest/detention and again during interview in Litmus the Chief puts great stress on calling Hadrian by her rank over and over, this always inplied to me that he considered himself above her in rank. Also if you watch it through on slow-mo zoomed in... (ok now i'm getting sad)... She has a "green diamond with a single stripe" and he has a "green diamond with single stripe and an arrowhead on each side" ie the ranks currently in the table as CPO for Tyrol and PO (of some grade) for Hadrian. - I didn't want to edit the main page as this is my first ever wiki experience. - Grible
- Thanks for your note, and your caution. Does anyone have screen captures of Tyrol & Hadrian's rank insignia? --April Arcus 19:26, 29 January 2006 (EST)
- I disagree: listen and you'll see that he's saying like "It was the Sergeant that was responsible for that", etc. And because he was on trial, it's not like he'd be presumptuous enough to call her by name, but at the same time, he wanted to be condescending and shift the blame to her. As they've already stated on screen, Tyrol is the highest Non-Com Colonial Fleet officer, and Sergeant Hadrian is the highest-ranking Colonial Marine Non-Com; they've both got the highest Non-Com rank. --Ricimer 20:32, 29 January 2006 (EST)
I've got screen captures to support my point now, I must needs be go to work however, how do i get the captures to you? Also, Just because Hadrian is the ranking Marine aboard Galactica doesn't mean she has to hold the highest rank, Galactica is short of Marines from the start. I would suggest that a ship on it's way to decommission only has the bare minimum of marines under an appropriatly ranked person (Hadrian) to do marine stuff (guard things etc) onboard. No one expects them to need Marines for boarding/landing parties or to defend the ship. Furthermore, Hadrian is the Master-at-Arms, she's the ships policeman. If Galactica had a full unit of marines chances are there would be commissioned marine officers and a complete command structure. I suggest she is a relativly low ranked NCO with a handful of marines to act as a security force aboard a ship about to leave the service, then look what happened... - Grible
--No. "Sergeant" is the highest NCO rank, anything higher would be a commissioned officer. That's the same position Tyrol is in.--Ricimer 10:54, 30 January 2006 (EST)
--yes and no, "Sergeant" used in conversation could mean any level of Sergeant. She could be anything from E4-E9 and still be legitimatly called Sergeant. Since I'm only (and how anal do i feel) suggesting she be bumped down to the PO grade she would still be a Sergeant just a lower ranked one. Also... do Marines exist at all? Or is "Marine" a job title like "Machine Operator" or "Comms Tech"? the ranks being assigned Marine sounding names but there being no "Marine Corp" as such? Are we blinded by the need to make this fit the US system? However the point is I've got Screen captures from Litmus that show her coller insig as being what this page has defined as PO (1st or 2nd) she's in the wrong place whatever the reasoning behind Marines.(my understanding of wiki isn't up to linking to the image but it's in the list called TyrolHadrianinsig.jpg) - Grible
- Here you go with the pic. It's not a matter of shoehorning the US Marine rank system. Marines have a seperate rank system, we have two examples PFC Kelso and Sergeant Hadrian. --Talos 14:19, 30 January 2006 (EST)
- Oh, and in Final Cut, during Kelso's interview, the text reads PFC Scott Kelso, CMCR which would be the Colonial Marine Corps Reserve. --Talos 14:22, 30 January 2006 (EST)
- You're arguing about changing the rank equivalence of characters, and you didn't even know that the Colonial Marine Corps existed? Please read this link, it has more info than I can list here. Officially, the Colonial Fleet ranks are as stated above Admiral, Commander...Lieutenant, Chief Petty Officer, etc. etc. Also officially, RDM has stated that the Marines don't use this rank structure, but an entirely different one. Comparing collar rank insignia is meaningless. Because they use an entirely separate rank structure, they almost certainly have different rank insignia. We know that "Sergeant" is the highest Marine non-com rank, Commander Adama stated in that episode that Sergeant Hadrian, their Master-At-Arms, was the highest ranking Marine on the ship, and we've seen other Marines who were "Sergeant"'s so I think she's the highest rank of "Sergeant". The reason Tyrol acts like she outranks him is because she's the de facto MP (military police) leader aboard Galactica, and has been given greater responsibilities as a result. But they have equivalent rank.--Ricimer 15:38, 30 January 2006 (EST)
- Maybe Sgt. Hadrian is the highest-ranking Marine on the ship because they just didn't have any Staff Sgts/Gunnery Sgts/First Sgts/Sgt Majors. If Galactica is the equivalent of an aircraft carrier they would just have a small detachment of marines—most of the marines could be aboard "amphibious ships" instead. Incidentally, the Marines could be a part of the Fleet just as, say, the Royal Marines are part of the Royal Navy, or the US Marines used to be a part of the US Navy until 1947. Was there a Colonial Army? Philwelch 18:30, 30 January 2006 (EST)
I was dipping a toe about the colonial marines, my point was really that, did they have to be a seperate service? I've been slapped down, leave it be :)
IMHO Tyrol acts like he out ranks her (which is borne out by the coller pins). Else he should call her Sir/Ma'am not repeatedly use her rank and be borderline insulting to her. As above just because she is the highest ranking marine on the ship doesn't make her the highest rank avalible. She is the Master-at-Arms even if she is equal in rank to the other sergeants, which I'm not arguing for (there are plenty of sergeant grades to go around), she would still be in charge. On a more fundamental point i would also suggest comparing collar rank insignia is the only meaningful way of establishing relative rank. There really wouldn't be much point in having it otherwise. For instance all of the branches of the US army forces use a unified collar ranking system to streamline relative ranks, isn't that the point? The coller pins used are the old army ones but everyone uses them. It makes no sense for a Navel LtCmdr to wear Oak leaves (not very naval) but it draws the link to Army/Air/Marine Majors, this is the point no? - Grible 17:37, 30 January 2006 (EST) (look at me learning wiki!)
- At least in the US, enlisted are never called "sir", only commissioned officers. Notice how everyone calls Tyrol "Chief". Even in terms of officers, you can call an officer by his rank if he outranks you without offense—this happens all the time. Philwelch 18:38, 30 January 2006 (EST)
- In the following scene Socinus addresses Hadrian as Sir through-out - Grible 03:02, 31 January 2006 (EST)
- Raw recruits (fresh out of boot) have the tendency to "sir" anything that moves. I guess it is better to throw in an extra "sir" than to miss one. The worst you'll usually get by "sir"ing an NCO is a gruff "Don't sir me, I work for a living." --Steelviper 08:47, 31 January 2006 (EST)
- I agree with you, however since we arn't assuming this to function like our world (nods to Ricimer) i thought i'd mention it. It just seems to me to support my contention that Tyrol outranks Hadrian since he never Sir's her and Specialist Socinus, not a raw recruit?, does. However Ricimer is quite right and he could be panicing and Siring every thing that moves I suppose. - Grible 09:23, 31 January 2006 (EST)
- We should in no way "assume" that their military functions like ours, that they have equivalent rank insignia between different branches of the military: we shouldn't assumme that they function like the US military in that respect. Further, the ENTIRE scene is really tainted: Hadrian is suspecious of him and prying, and Tyrol (regardless of whether he is addressing a superior officer, or whether he is not) is just really nervous that they'll find out about Boomer and his relationship, so his smokescreen is to be really agitated and throw questions back at Hadrian, or more importantly, trying to shift blame on Hadrian by saying that securing the hatch was her job. This isn't a "normal" scene, and we should not base anything on it as a result.
- But basically, you have been "assuming" that calling her by her rank, "Sergeant" is somehow and insult, but we have seen nothing on screen to provide evidence for that. How do we know that they're that much like our own military, that such a thing would also be copied. Far too many assumptions. --Ricimer 18:42, 30 January 2006 (EST)
- If anyone cares about my opinion: I think that, without any other evidence, we should assume the insignias represent equal ranks, as they do in practically all terrestrial militaries, and that therefore it would be prudent, without any other evidence, to assume that Hadrian is a Staff Sergeant. I don't see this as presenting a problem with regards to the events in Litmus or anything else. But: does anyone have any caps of insignias of any other Marines? Kelso or Venner, for example? --Redwall 19:18, 30 January 2006 (EST)
- I concur. It makes complete sense to assume that the rank insigniae are the same across services. Otherwise, why have the top Sergeant rank look exactly like the insignia for a lesser Naval rank? That's just confusing. If they weren't meant to show equivalencies, I'd expect the insigniae to look quite different. However, unless we're certain that this is the correct insignia for Hadrian, I'm not sure we should go on it. It's very, very easy to mess up rank pips and all that. --Day 23:32, 30 January 2006 (EST)
- I agree we shouldn't be assuming things based on the US militeary (a 9 grade enlisted/NCO structure in the first place...) I dragged the Naval coller pin thing into this to make the point Redwall made for me above. I take onboard that this is not a normal scene in the "court". However his switch in tone and phrasing on the hanger deck before does still suggest to me he is stressing her rank because he has that over her. The shifting the blame point is true and isn't affected, if anything by stressing she is lesser in rank he's trying to belittle/intimidate her which to me does tie in with his shift of blame. (It's to Hadrian's credit she doesn't bend!) - Grible 09:23, 31 January 2006 (EST)
In Sacrifices, Starbuck addresses a Marine leader as "Gunny". This is an "affectionate" term for a Marine Gunnery Sergeant, who's equivalent in rank to a Navy Chief Petty Officer. The Gunny probably outranks Hadrian--maybe he's from the Pegasus. In any case, this is pretty definite proof that the rank of Gunnery Sergeant exists in the Colonial Marines. Philwelch 23:15, 10 February 2006 (EST)
- The term "Gunny" may be a familiar term here in NATO circles, but BSG isn't NATO, nor is it supposed to be an exact emulation of real-life situations, structures, and terminology. Thrace's use of the term "Gunny" was actually directed towards a character who is listed in the credits as a Lieutenant. How do you explain that? Who's at fault? Has it ever crossed your mind that BSG might not be exactly like familiar ol' Earth here, and that the term "Gunny" might be given to all Marines by pilots as a term-of-endearment, such as "Leatherneck" or "Grunt"? What she said isn't pretty definite proof, or any kind of proof. This series is still being written, so we really shouldn't jump to "definite" conclusions yet. -- Hawke 01:41, 24 February 2006 (EST)
- Here's an interesting picture from Home part I (crap I mislabled the picture!). The non-com walking is wearing the khakis we have associated with the Marines but his insignia appears to be identical to Tyrol's CPO insignia with the exception of a yellow enamel background unlike the traditional green. --Talos 23:31, 22 February 2006 (EST)
As we are now dealing with two branches and therefore two equivelents, might two charts be appropriate?? Kkimball 23:30, 10 February 2006 (EST)
- Yes, I think so. --April Arcus 23:33, 10 February 2006 (EST)
Back to Officer Ranks...
A couple of things:
When Cain tries to justify her jurisdiction in sentencing Tyrol and Helo to deal, she says that she's a flag officer in a time of war. Does anybody else read into that statement that Adama as a Commander was NOT a flag officer (at that time)?
It's not nonsense that then-Commander Adama would be "simply" the equivalent of a Naval Captain and assume command over the Colonial Fleet. As the highest ranking officer known, do you think it really makes sense to quibble over that?
Reminds me of Star Trek: First Contact when Picard took charge of the fleet attacking the Borg Cube...there was assumed to be no higher officer left there, so who's going to argue in a time of crisis against him putting a head back on the chicken-with-its-head-chopped-off? Seems the same to me...
Regarding the rank of Major: I think it's safe to say that there is no longer a confusion as to whether Major's senior to Captain, since Lee considered it a promotion, so I'm changing that statement appropriately. Rocky8311 01:16, 24 February 2006 (EST)
- Even if there were still flag officers outranking Adama, he was in probably the best position to assume fleet command, and he knew it: his battlestar was immune to the cylon backdoors, had not sustained heavy damage, and, most importantly, his service in the first cylon war probably qualified him uniquely - very few men of Adama and Tigh's vintage were probably left in the fleet. Cain had certainly never seen actual combat with the Cylons, so Adama could reasonably assume that he'd have the confidence of other officers, given the dire circumstances. --April Arcus 01:30, 24 February 2006 (EST)
- That's what I'm saying, but I'm taking it a step further and saying that Adama wasn't a Flag Officer as a Commander and I'm not sure that there's a reason to assume so. I guess we can't really take the voice inflection in Admiral Cain's voice as proof that she considered herself the only Flag officer in the fleet though...after all, the actress isn't necessarily briefed on such things. Rocky8311 03:13, 24 February 2006 (EST)
- I realise this is going over an old topic, but I tend to agree with the assesment that The Colonial rank of Commander is analogous to modern day naval Captain- the First Contact analogy is perfect, too, since Picard was one of the few surviving Captains with actual combat experience with the Borg. The point about Cain is good, too, although even if Commander was a flag rank, she is referred to as Admiral, and is established as his superior- as such, she would have greater authority than him. As much as I'd like to use that argument to have Commander moved in line with Captain, it's not concrete. --Madbrood 09:22, 27 September 2006 (CDT)
Has anybody else noticed a difference in the piping on the uniforms of the different grades of officers? It seems like Commanders have red trim on their jackets and lower grades have shades of blue. Rocky8311 03:13, 24 February 2006 (EST)
Shane, I'm not sure I follow your efforts to colorize the chart here - can you link to an example of what you have in mind? Also, although you may not be finished with your editing here, your recent changes seem to have messed up the column widths in my browser, Safari 2.0.3. --April Arcus 15:05, 11 June 2006 (CDT)