Discussion in 'Naval Academy - USNA' started by bb2405, Apr 5, 2011.
what are the differences between navy and air force?
do you mean between the academies? Anyhow, the differences are fairly large in my opinion. In the base form, you can look at it this way: air force = planes, navy = ships. Then you can go into more detail from them seeing where each overlap, etc.
While I'd not have used the AF=planes, etc. illustration as I suspect it is way too simplistic and misleading (nearly as many Midshipmen go to flight school as surface warfare), the cultures, training, end games of these 2 academies and their ensuing branches of service are significantly different. There are many insightful, informative threads and posts on this forum addressing this complex topic. You may want to do some homework searching and reading.
"air force = planes, navy = ships" is definitely misleading. It is a quite beloved expression at USNA to identify that the navy has more planes than the air force. Top Gun, yea, that's Navy. Navy also has the Marine Corps. I'm yet to be spend extended time on a ship in my Marine Corp career.
Speaking with a certain degree of ignorance about the many different sides to the Air Force I'll refer to Air Force's self identified territories of "Air, Space and Cyberspace."
I, too, am not familiar with the inner-working of the USAF. However, they are more concerned with national air defense, space, global lift, and global air combat capability from land basing. The Navy, is normally concerned with anything in the maritime domain...meaning if it involves anything over a body of water, it is covered. The Navy can base itself practically anywhere off anyone's coast to conduct a wide-range of combat operations (air defense, air power [CVN/LHD/LHA], missile strikes, security operations/VBSS teams, logistical support, amphibious landings/demonstrations/raids [in conjunction with USMC], etc.).
With the previous paragraph in mind, cyberspace and cyber-security is a growing (and emphasized) issue among all services that is non-traditional. With no geographical boundary and since all services have their own networks -- I would not classify cyberspace as an Air Force "only" issue anymore; all services have cyber components, reporting to the sub-unified command of STRATCOM, USCYBERCOM (led by an Army General).
But as 08Marine posted, the USAF mission is to man, train, and equip in support of air, space, and cyberspace operations.
Also recommend reading/scanning "A Cooperative Strategy for 21st Century Seapower," a joint document between the Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard -- http://www.navy.mil/maritime/Maritimestrategy.pdf
Although written for an audience that might have some military background and understanding of concepts, it gives you an idea for the vision/purpose of the Navy -- working with its other sea service partners.
thanks very much, also which branch will you be more likely to receive a position as a fighter pilot?
If anything, the Navy overlaps the Air Force - not the other way around.
In my opinion, there are many more viable career paths available in the Navy.
Operationally speaking, there are admirals who were Surface Warfare Officers, Submariners, and Aviators. Although very different, they are all well-respected and viable careers. Plus, you can enter the Marine Corps from the Naval Academy! The Naval Academy offers you everything you would ever want if you went to West Point and everything you'd ever want if you went to the Air Force Academy.
In the Air Force, operationally speaking, you're either a pilot or you're not. I know I'm probably over-simplifying it a bit. But there is more than a grain of truth to this.
Amongst Air Force officers, if you're not a pilot - you're a second class citizen to some extent. Sure, nobody is going to tell you that outright - it mostly goes unsaid. A vast majority of the high-ranking officers are pilots.
There is a bad side to the Navy, however. The Navy is the "away team" of the military. It is not nearly has conducive to a "normal" family life as the Air Force is. The Air Force is a much cushier existence. There's no doubt about that.
I wouldn't necessarily say one is better than the other, however. It's a matter of personal temperament.
Don't forget, not everybody who flies (in either the Navy or Air Force) is a necessarily a hotshot fighter pilot. There are helicopters and tankers. Also, the Air Force uses pilots to fly Predators (unmanned aircraft). Imagine going through flight school, earning your wings, and then they lock you in a closet and you are basically playing XBox, remotely? That would never happen in the Navy.
Let's face it - there is nothing cooler than landing an F/A-18 Hornet on an aircraft carrier.
From an aviation perspective, the Air Force is bigger - but the Navy is cooler.
Everybody has heard of the Blue Angels ... only some people have ever heard of the Thunderbirds.
Navy it is.
I'd recommend you also ask this question in the USAFA section. You just might get some different opinions than the ones stated here.
Well, if this is your #1 criteria, I will simply mention that the AF has twice as many fighters than the Navy and Marine Corps COMBINED! I will let you then make your own assessment.
Of course, AF landings just aren't as "cool"; we tend to worry more about the mission (which, personally, I think is the vastly more "cooler" aspect of flying fighters), and take the fact that we have to land after wards pretty low on our mission priority for that day's work.
Neither is "better" than the other, just "different".
Well ask yourself this, are you okay with being on a ship for a couple of months time after time throughout your career? Because it's nearly certain you will if your in the Navy.
LOL the Navy is getting their own unmanned planes. Navy "aviators" using those xbox controllers you spoke of is not an impossibility. and for the record, the AF UAV career field is going to stop putting its pilots through "real" pilot training, but rather a completely different course that is tailored for that specific mission. so you'll know once you get your base assignment if you'll be flying UAV's.
if by "away team" you mean that they have a lower quality of life, then i'd agree. if by "away team" you mean that they are the "offense" and AF is "defense" i'd suggest you look a little bit into the airpower history of the Persian Gulf War, our activities in Kosovo, Bosnia/Serbia, OEF, and OIF (just to name a few), and see who's doing the heavy lifting. In short, its Air Force, not Navy.
Which brings me to my final point...landing on carriers. if that's THE claim to fame that the Navy has, i'll stick to the glory coming from doing the mission -- not putting the wheels down on some ship once the Air Force accomplished the mission for you
but in all seriousness, both are honorable pursuits, i'm just a little biased. the facts are that AF has more fighters, drop more ordinance, and have better lives than navy pilots (who are better at landing and have a more well known aerial demonstration team ). ultimately it's up to you, but if you want to be the best, go Air Force Blue.
buuut, the navy is not a bad second choice either (as Paramount Pictures discovered when they rebounded on Navy to make Top Gun because their first choice, Air Force, didn't want to haha).
endoftheline, you're in high school, right? Memphis is a 1979 USNA grad. He's biased too, but maybe his biases are, oh I dunno, based on actual time in service and experience, not the internet.
Slow your roll there, shipmate.
I realize you're trying to be funny or something, but you're just coming across as a major tool.
Thanks Hurricane. I couldn't have said it better myself.
One of the worst passes in motion picture history for a service....
Of course, I don't remember seeing Navy in that movie either....I do remember a VERY HOT and EXCITING Coast Guard helo though.
But NOT VERY REALISTIC.
Of course the Navy was there. USCG had not yet developed rescue swimmers at the time and the SAR swimmer in the rescue scene was Petty Officer Baker, USN. Check the credits.
haha, okay i admit i was just having a bit of fun. to be frank, i think landing on carriers is downright awesome. its just i think the AF contributes way more to the airpower/air superiority mission than the navy (and the numbers support this statement), which IMO is what OVERALL makes it more "cool" than naval aviation.
and why do you think i'm in high school?
You've gotten lots of opinion, and some facts. Be clear that everyone has a bias, a viewpoint, an opinion. But the difference here is nothing short of monumental in most ways that will impact most in these branches in very significant ways. Now that is a fact.
So, finding that truth, means doing some grunt homework, sorting out your sources (that's probably the simplest of tasks ... all you need do on a thread like this is read a handful of posts from those with differing points of views. And if you've 2 cents of brains, discernment, logic, you'll figure this out in a flash.), and assessing your own desires, personality, gifts to determine where you fit well.
One of the most confounding of aspects on this and other similar forums are how many candidates seem to have so little concern nor discerment about the dramatic differences in the various Service Academies. Many apply to any and all academies, which is very telling about candidates. And equally illuminating is how few MOCs seem to care about this and/or use it as a differentiating tool among the masses. I applaud your early effort to sort this one out. And your alleged purveyors of information as well. You're bright. You will figure this and us out.
Coast Guard pulling navy pilots out of the water has become very realistic.
Takes me back to 2005, when the Navy used a Coast Guard picture from Katrina as its recruiting poster....NICE....
I had to look on our historian's website, but the first CG rescue swimmers graduated in 1984. Top Gun is a 1986 film. The Coast Guard had rescue swimmers before it had a rescue swimmer school....
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