Military branch


Military branch (also service branch or armed service) is according to common standard a subdivision of the national armed forces of a sovereign nation or state.

A United States Armed Forces Joint-Service Color Guard. This color guard consists of personnel from 5 of the 6 military branches of the United States Armed Forces (Army, Marines, Air Force, Navy, and Coast Guard).

Types of branches

Type Role Example (if atypical)
Aerospace force Air and space warfare French Air and Space Force
Airborne forces Paratrooper operations Russian Airborne Forces
Air defence force Air and missile defense Egyptian Air Defense Forces
Air force Aerial warfare
Army Ground warfare
Coast guard Maritime security United States Coast Guard
Cyber force Cyberwarfare Norwegian Cyber Defence Force
Emergencies service Disaster relief and emergency management. Military Emergencies Unit (Spain)
Gendarmerie Military police force National Gendarmerie (France)
Logistics service Military logistics Joint Support Service (Germany)
Marines Naval land force United States Marine Corps
Medical service Medical service Belgian Medical Component
Military police Military law enforcement agency Republic of China Military Police
Military reserve force National reserve and auxiliary service Lithuanian National Defence Volunteer Forces
Navy Naval warfare
Rocket force Military rocketry People's Liberation Army Rocket Force (China)
Space force Space warfare United States Space Force
Special forces Special operations Special Operations Forces (Russia)

Unified armed forces

The Canadian Armed Forces is the unified armed forces of Canada. While it has three environmental commands - namely the Canadian Army, Royal Canadian Navy, and Royal Canadian Air Force - it remains a single military service.[citation needed]

NATO definition

Branch of service (also branch of military service or branch of armed service) refers, according to NATO standards, to a branch, employment of combined forces or parts of a service, below the level of service, military service, or armed service.[1]

See also


  1. ^ MILITÄRISCHES STUDIENGLOSSAR ENGLISCH Teil I, A – K, Bundessprachenamt (Stand Januar 2001), page 226, definition: branch of service.