Army History

The Ground Army

An army is a land-based military branch, armed service or service branch of a state or nation. The word Army is derived from the Latin arma meaning arms via the Old French word armée which means armed. The army may also incorporate other branches of military like the air force through aviation corps. Within the scope of a nation's military force, the term army may also indicate a field army that is composed of full-time professional career soldiers who do not disintegrate during the times of peace. An army like this differs from the army reserves that are only activated during times of crisis such as wars or natural calamities.

In numerous countries, the national army is officially referred to as the Land Army in order to discriminate it from the country's air force or the Air Army, especially in France. In all such countries, the term "army" itself retains on its own a connotation with the land force in the common usage. At present, the world's largest army in relation to the total count of active squads is People's Liberation Army of China, having 2250000 active troops as well as 800000 reserve personnel. The Indian Army follows second with a total of 1325000 active troops as well as 2142821 reserve personnel.

The Ground Army Image Conventionally, irregular military is contrasted from the regular armies that evolved slowly from a trend of elite militia or personal bodyguards. A series of standardized doctrines, organizations, uniforms, etc. are applicable to the regular military. Regular military also often refers to a full-time status, which is contrary to Reserve military's part-time personnel. Army may also have other distinctions, such as statutory forces and de facto "non statutory" forces or they may be expeditionary or fencible.

Army Subdivisions

Western armies are generally subdivided in the following way:


Corps: Corps generally includes 2 or more Divisions; it is headed by one Lieutenant General.

Divisions: Every division is headed by one Major General and generally holds 3 Brigades including artillery, infantry, engineers and the communications units as well as logistics support for sustaining independent action. Apart from the Divisions that operate in mountains, all Divisions have got at least 1 armored unit and some have more based on their functionality. The infantry division is the fundamental building block of every land force combat formations. A typical division normally holds 3 infantry brigades.

Brigade: Brigade operates under the leadership of the Brigadier General or a Colonel and includes 3 or more different unit Battalions depending on functionality. A single independent brigade primarily consists of one artillery unit, one infantry unit, one armor unit as well as logistics to provide support for its actions. A Brigade like that is not associated with any division and operates under the direct command of corps.

Battalion: Every Battalion is headed by one Colonel or occasionally by a Lieutenant Colonel under whose command there are 500 to 700 soldiers. The number varies based on the functional aspects of the regiment. One single Battalion is comprised of 3 to 5 companies or functional equivalents like batteries composed of artillery or squadrons composed of armor and cavalry, both of which are commanded by the Major. A Company can again be subdivided into platoons, which can be further divided into squads or sections.