The Armenian Defense Forces, or ADF, are the military of the Republic of Armenia. They are charged with defending the nation and its interests, as well as maintaining order in times of crisis. The ADF is comprised of an Army, Navy, Air Force, and militarized Merchant Marine. It is sprung from the revolutionary ASF organization, which was the rebel group responsible for gaining the independence of Armenia and the weakening of Turkey. The ADF are comprised of roughly 300,000 men, largely 18-30. Their equipment is largely of indigenous origin, like the K19 rifle. The NSS is responsible for intelligence and spy activities in the region, and regarded by many as the finest and most efficient regional intelligence force. In January 1980, the military had 132,000 active combat troops stationed mostly at the Western Armenian fronts.
Rank and StructureEdit
Armenian military ranks reflect a heavy Persian influence, with the ranking system almost directly adapted from the Shah's military. However, a European influence is also seen in them, and thus, the Persian ranking system has gone through some minor changes to conform to a Spanish or English-styled ten grade system. Below are the ranks of the ADF:
|Pay Grade||Army/Marines/Air Force||Navy/Merchant Marine|
|E-3||Private First Class||Seaman|
|E-4||Corporal||Petty Officer Third Class|
|E-5||Sergeant||Petty Officer Second Class|
|E-6||Staff Sergeant||Petty Officer First Class|
|E-7||Sergeant First Class||Chief Petty Officer|
|E-8||Sergeant Major||Senior Chief Petty Officer|
|E-9||Command Sergeant Major||Master Chief Petty Officer|
|E-10||Sergeant Major of the Branch||Chief Petty Officer of the Branch|
|Pay Grade||Army/Marines/Air Force||Navy/Merchant Marine|
|O-2||First Lieutenant||Lieutenant Junior Grade|
|O-8||Major General||Rear Admiral|
|O-9||Lieutenant General||Vice Admiral|
In addition to these ranks, selected individuals may be named Supreme Commander of the Branch, but it is a title only. Supreme Commanders still retain the O-10 pay grade. Also important to note is the fact that there is only one E-10 at any given time. E-9 is the maximum realistic rank achieved for many, while E-10 is an extention of it like the Supreme Commander position. An extention to E-7 is also available, and is called First Sergeant. First Sergeants still retain the E-7 pay grade, but command the enlisted soldiers of a company as opposed to a platoon.
The structure of the ADF is also similar to the Persian military. Below is a table illustrating the structure in order from smallest to largest:
|Name||Number of Personnel|
|Patrol||4 (4 soldiers)|
|Squad||9 (2 patrols and an NCO)|
|Platoon||45 (5 squads)|
|Company||225 (5 platoons)|
|Battalion||1,125 (5 companies)|
|Regiment||3,375 (3 battalions)|
|Division||13,500 (4 regiments)|
|Corps||54,000 (4 divisions)|
216,000 (4 corps)
The Armenian Defense Forces use a variety of different uniforms in their duties. The Army and Navy each have their own specific dress and service uniforms and regulations, with the Air Force following the Army's. The differences serve to distinguish members of each branch, and also instil an esprit de corps in the military. The uniforms are rooted in traditional military attire from Caucasus history, and reflect that with certain items. Dress uniforms are largely inspired by Persian attire, while combat uniforms reflect a more Polish influence. However, elements from the Russian and Armenian diasporas can be seen, such as the use of a telnyashka as an undershirt in most every uniform. Uniforms can be divided into four catagories, each with a specific purpose: utility, service, dress, and physical training.
The ADF's primary battle dress uniform is a lightweight desert and mountain-oriented uniform in a single olive drab tone, The Armenian uniform includes some minor national characteristics: most notably the authorization of Armenian flag patches, regiment patches (both on the right shoulder), a nametag, and a service identification tag (right and left breast pocket, respectively.) Also, current regulations encourage wear of trouser legs over the boots, as opposed to the European practice of blousing pant legs. However, paratroopers and other special warfare units choose to blouse their boots for practical and status reasons. In addition, authorized headgear includes the standard patrol cap or "boonie" cap, but servicemen may also wear berets or low-profile garrison covers (officers particularly choose the latter) with their uniforms. Winter clothing is authorized in the mountain regions, or during the wintertime at the unit commander's advisory. These consist of hooded overgarments with a wool lining. Fleeces are issued for chilly conditions, and are popular wear amongst Armenians both civilian and military.
Service uniforms are worn during daily staff duties in garrison military bases. These are roughly equivalent to business casual clothing in usage, and so are less stringently regulated than dress uniforms. The Army and Navy both have separate service uniforms that fulfill roughly the same function. The Army version is composed of khaki trousers, a lighter dress shirt, a khaki jacket with dark grey trim, a black belt with bronze buckle, and black Oxford shoes. The uniform is worn similarly to the Persian Army's service uniform, with similarly-arranged decorations (including ribbons, badges, rank epaulettes, and armbands.) Appropriate headgear is a garrison cap, combination cover, or service-appropriate beret. Meanwhile, the Naval version reflects a more nautical tradition and is composed of white pants, jacket, and shirt alongside black shoes and a black belt. A black fleece may be used as cold-weather gear. Decorations are used more sparingly than in the Army, and thus only ribbons and badges are authorized. Headgear is a service-appropriate beret or a combination cover.
Dress uniforms are worn for formal occasions including high-profile meetings and dinners. As such, it is considered to be more fancy and extravagant than the service uniform. The Army uses a dark blue uniform of similar cut to the service uniform with a black ascot, black gloves, a black pistol belt, and a ceremonial (rank-dependent) sword worn with an ornamental holster. The Navy uses a white uniform also similarly cut to their service uniform. This has caused some confusion and misconception, but there are key differences. The dress uniform's tie is replaced with a bow tie, and a pistol belt and leggings are worn. Like the Army, the Navy does have the option to use a sword with their uniform. However, this is only for officers and senior NCOs, and is typically a stylized cutlass. For both branches, ribbons are worn as their medal versions.
Physical training uniforms are simple athletic clothes used for working out. For most services, PT gear consists of shorts and a shirt with the appropriate service name stamped on the front. Footwear consists of athletic trainers. In colder conditions, track jackets and pants are used to provide additional insulation and protection from wind and rain elements. These are simple garments, often used outside their official function as comfortable lounging clothing at outposts far-removed from the prying, inspecting eyes of command.
Berets are an integral part of the ADF's uniform, and they are derived from the French military's usage due to the high amount of French-Armenians in the global diaspora. In the military, many branches of service have a beret color that corresponds. These are used to enhance esprit de corps in units, as they often have specialized functions.
|Navy Blue||Regular Navy|
|Orange||NSS / Ministry of the Interior|
|Gold||Pathfinders / Rangers|
|Light Blue||Regular Air Force|
|Black||Regular Army / Naval Infantry|
|Grey||Militia / Reserves|
Main article: Awards and Decorations of the Republic of Armenia
The Armenian Defense Forces have a standardized set of awards that are given to personnel for significant accomplishments or actions.