The military is the men and women who work in the army, navy, air force, or other armed forces of a country. The military protects its country by defending it from the armed forces of enemies, if there is a war. The military can also be ordered by the government of the country to attack another country. The word "military" comes from Latin "miles", warrior.
People in the military learn many skills, such as how to fire rifles and mortars, drive jeeps, and repair weapons. Other people in the military learn how to fly planes, pilot ships, or repair engines. People in the military usually wear clothes called a uniform, which is often in a camouflage pattern which is designed to make the person hard to see in the forest or desert.
There are two ways to join the military. In many countries, people join the military as volunteers (because they want to). In other countries, there are laws that some people have to be in the military, even if they do not want to be. This is called "the draft" or "conscription". It usually depends on age and fitness. People who have been in the military but have left or retired are called “veterans”.
Joining up and training.
In most countries of the world, young men and (in a few countries) women between 17 and 18 and of good health may be forced by the government of their country to join the military and have military training. This is called "conscription". The countries that do not have conscription include Australia, Bangladesh, Canada, France, Hungary, India, Italy, Japan, Malta, New Zealand, Saudi Arabia, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, United Kingdom and United States. In some countries, such as Argentina, conscription is legal, but is not used, at the present time.
When a person wants to join the military as a volunteer, they "enlist". (This means simply that they put their name on a list.) They have to be above a certain age, 17 or 18 in most countries. They have to pass fitness tests to show that they are well enough to do the jobs that they will have to do. They must also have good enough hearing, to hear instructions and good enough sight to use a rifle.
New people in the military are often called “recruits”. They have training at a special camp, sometimes called “boot camp”. During this training, the recruits usually have very little free time. They learn to understand the "orders" or "commands" that are given by the officers to the "troops". (The troops are the military people in a group.) They learn the right ways to obey the orders. They do a lot of exercise to improve their fitness and strength. They learn about weapons, first aid, and their uniforms and "kit". (Their kit is their equipment.) Recruits also learn how to march. (This is the way to walk together, keeping "in step".) Learning to march is sometimes called “drill”. By the time soldiers finish "boot camp", they should know enough to be a helpful person in their group. The camp usually finishes with a parade in which the newly trained recruits show off their marching and other skills they have learnt to important visitors. Once the recruits are fully trained, they are ready to defend (protect) their country from attack, or to go to war, if necessary.
Each part of the armed forces, the army, the navy and the airforce, is organized into groups. People in each of the armed forces are part of a group, that is part of a larger group.
Ranks in the United States military.
All branches of the US military have both Officers and Enlisted. Enlisted people with a rank of E-4 and above are called Non-commissioned Officers (NCOs). It is usually their job to make sure that common jobs are done properly every day. Each branch also includes "Warrant Officers" ("Chief Warrant Officers" in the Navy). These were enlisted members who have been made officers. They are considered experts in their field, they are higher rank than other enlisted troops, but below officers. There are four ranks of Warrant Officers: WO-1 through WO-4 (CWO-1 to CWO-4)
US military.
Here are some common ranks for the US Army, Air Force and Marines. Each branch of the military uses different names for the enlisted ranks, but they all use the same for officers.
US Navy.
The Navy has different ranks.
and class. For example, a Electronics Technician (ET) who is an E-5 is called an Electronics Technician 2nd class (ET2)

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