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Regular Army vs. Army of the United States


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A couple posts discussing rank got me wondering:  What is the difference between the "Regular Army" and the "Army of the United States"? 

I understand the temporary ranks.  (I think)  But I don't understand the above.

 

If you are in the "Regular Army" are you also automatically part of the "Army of the United States"?

If you are in the "Army of the United States" are you automatically in the "Regular Army"?

Can you be in one without being in the other?

How did the differentiation of the two come about and for what purpose?

Does a "Regular Army" Colonel out rank an "Army of the United States" Colonel?

To me it sounds like a solution in search of a problem, or an unnecessary distinction.  

 

Angus 

Feeling Alpo confused and wondering if I'm going to just feel stupid when I learn the answer

 

 

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I asked a similar question some months back, and if I remember the answer correctly, the Army of the United States (AUS) no longer exists. It's the United States Army. The AUS went away about the same time as World War II went away.

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As I understand it RA was for enlisted soldiers and West Point grads as well as those of certain military schools.  Draftees were US but they of course were not officers. If a draftee re-enlisted he became RA.

 

So we get to the base question, what really is AUS. It appears to me to be ranks needed for wartime but given any RIF, reduction in forces, it can go away quickly.

 

the other distinction is AR, Army Reserve, which includes a lot of ROTC graduates.  
 

there are a few other things going on but that’s my view of it

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The Regular Army were the career soldiers, they expected to serve long enough (20 years) to get  their pension.   The "Army of the United States" were the temporary help, they were there long enough to win the war and then go home.  When the war is over, the Army isn't going to need all those high ranking general officers.  While some Regular Army generals retired shortly after WWII ended, usually due to age, most of the remainder would revert back to their Regular Army rank unless they were serving in a role that required a higher rank.

 

Here is an example:  Lucien Truscott's Regular Army rank at the end of WWII was Brigadier General, but because he commanded 3rd Army after Patton was relieved of command, he continued to serve in Army of the United States as a Lieutenant General.

 

The same thing occurred in WWI, only the Army of the United States was called the National Army instead, but it worked the same way.

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When I was in  72-73 you were:

RA  Regular Army       these included draftees

ER  enlisted reserve

NG  National Guard

 

NG's and ER's served with RA but trust me were treated quite differently.

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Alpo is correct. AUS term went out after WWII. Officers in the Army are commissioned as Reserve Officers. West Point graduates are commissioned Regular Army officers. Regular Officers in the Navy or Air Force are also graduates of their respective academies. If you desire a career it's possible to earn a regular Army commission. Not much chance of rising above Colonel if you're a Reserve Officer. There are some hoops to jump through.

There is some confusion about Reserve officers. You may serve 30 years on active duty and never set foot in a reserve unit.

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OK.  It seems the "Army of the United States" only exists(existed) during times of war.  Why the distinction?  Why not just call it the "Army" instead of RA or AUS?  Does any other service hop thru any similar semantic hoops?  Is there a "Regular Navy" and a "Navy of the United States"?  Air Force?  Marines?  Coast Guard?  If not, why not?

 

Three page essay on my desk by Friday.

 

And you guys thought answering this was going to be easy.  :D

 

 

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1 hour ago, Dutch Nichols, SASS #6461 said:

When I was in  72-73 you were:

RA  Regular Army       these included draftees

ER  enlisted reserve

NG  National Guard

 

NG's and ER's served with RA but trust me were treated quite differently.

OK ... now you are jarring some things loose that I was trying to remember.

I was in ... in '67 .. and NOW ... I remember ... (knew there was a different designation SN prefix for draftees etc when they still had 8 digit SN .. don't know if that stuck w/ they changed to 9 digit SSN in '68 or not)

RA - Regular Army - these guys enlisted

US -  Draftees

NG - National Guard

ER - Enlisted Reserve

Heck .. I think there were some others as well. 

Things were strange then ... there were "control groups" being called in etc ... and lots of Puerto Ricans doing stints for citizenship etc ..  

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6 minutes ago, Patagonia Pete said:

 lots of Puerto Ricans doing stints for citizenship

I believe you are confused.

 

Puerto Rico has been US property since 1898, and Puertoricans have been United States citizens since 1917.

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42 minutes ago, Black Angus McPherson said:

OK.  It seems the "Army of the United States" only exists(existed) during times of war.  Why the distinction?  Why not just call it the "Army" instead of RA or AUS?  Does any other service hop thru any similar semantic hoops?  Is there a "Regular Navy" and a "Navy of the United States"?  Air Force?  Marines?  Coast Guard?  If not, why not?

 

Three page essay on my desk by Friday.

 

And you guys thought answering this was going to be easy.  :D

 

 

There is the USN and the USNR. The Navy and  Marines have no national guard. Only Reserves.
and to confuse things more....

Quote

A combined conscript and volunteer force, the National Army, was formed by the United States War Department in 1917 to fight in World War I. The National Army was formed from the old core of the regular United States Army, augmented by units of the United States National Guard and a large draft of able-bodied men.

Here’s an officer’s collar insignia from WW1.

1367E37A-2D41-44CE-97D7-5E3C7064B196.jpeg

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Not just West Point grads were Regular Army.  Top ROTC grads were as well.  Back in the day, all career officers would become Regular Army when they reached the rank of Major, assuming they were reserve officers until tuen.

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Quote

AR 601-100 spells this out: http://dopma-ropma.rand.org/pdf/AR-600-100.pdf

In short - since 2005 - all Active Duty Army Officers are Regular officers as opposed to the previous system in which there were Officers on Active Duty who were designated as RA , AUS or USAR-till 1996 all West Pointers and ROTC Distinguished Military Grads were commissioned as RA, and all the rest were commissioned USAR - (ie temporary help) even if they were on AD. To move from USAR to RA status your records had to go before a board for augmentation into the Regular Army. It was a holdover of a much earlier time . In 1996 they started commissioning everyone as USAR and then they would be augmented into the RA at the 5 year mark. That was pretty silly too - one more board for records to be reviewed. So the DOPMA of 2005 fixed this for all branches .

 

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1 hour ago, Alpo said:

I believe you are confused.

 

Puerto Rico has been US property since 1898, and Puertoricans have been United States citizens since 1917.

Yes .. you are right .. I am confused. They are citizens but not allowed to vote in general elections. :unsure:

Anyhow ... I guess they were simply draftees ... and there were lots of them ... lots and lots of them ... bunches ... 

 

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