Com Guards

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The Com Guards, formally referred to as the ComStar Guards and Militia, was the military arm of ComStar. Kept hidden by the supposedly politically neutral organization until after the Fourth Succession War, the Guards were a force on par with the militaries of the Successor States. Originally serving as garrison troops for ComStar's HPG compounds, they soon shifted towards a role as defenders of the Inner Sphere, most famously their victory against the Clans in the Battle of Tukayyid. Split by the ComStar Schism, the Guards suffered heavy losses combating the Word of Blake during their fanatical former brothers' Jihad and publicly disbanded after that conflict.

History[edit]

The Com Guards were founded in the wake of the collapse of the Star League by Jerome Blake, who created them as a source of order for the Inner Sphere should the Successor States attempt to attack Terra or any HPG stations across the Sphere. The Com Guards were kept hidden by Blake and his successors, far from the prying eyes of the Successor State militaries, and, due to this, escaped much of the technological downgrades that said militaries suffered over the course of four Succession Wars.

ComStar Guards and Militia[edit]

Settling with five regiments worth of full-time troops as part of a compromise with liberal elements on the First Circuit, Hollings York placed the new ComStar Guards and Militia under the shared control of the Primus and First Circuit. Building his military around the core of the now disbanded Bandersnatches and outfitted from ComStar's SLDF stockpiles, York tapped the vast resources of ROM to fund its creation as well as convincing the First Circuit to approve millions of C-Bills to transform the Sandhurst Royal Military College from a ROM training school back into a full military academy again. Upon publicly announcing the formation of the branch to the stunned House Lords, York took great pains to convince them the ComStar Guards would be a light infantry force trained only for defensive purposes and stationed strictly on Terra. [1] In truth York set in motion the creation of the most powerful military since the collapse of the Star League, featuring extensive BattleMech, Combat Vehicle and AeroSpace Fighter support bolstered by the construction and refurbishment of WarShips, by that point extinct in all Successor State navies. [2]

However the large volume of funding required for York's dream drew heavy criticism from both members on the First Circuit such as Adrienne Sims and ROM, whose overall funding was reduced to pay for the Guards expansion. While York would attempt to soothe tensions with Sims by naming her his successor as Primus, he increasingly antagonized the Order's intelligence agency, ultimately proposing in the spring of 2947 to formally disband ROM to a full gathering of all Precentors on Terra, with its intelligence-gathering and security role to be re-assigned to the ComStar Guards. [1] [3]

The ComStar Guards and Militia would lose its patron two months after this history-making speech when Hollings York was assassinated at the corner-stone-laying ceremony for the refurbished Sandhurst Royal Military College. [3] One of the most strident critics of both York and the Guards and Militia, his successor Adrienne Sims reversed plans to disband ROM, restoring its funding and transforming his ComStar Guards and Militia into a mere division of the Order's intelligence agency as she focused on her own pet project, the Explorer Corps. [4]

The fortunes of the ComStar Guards and Militia would improve under Sim's successor Yin Takami with the successful completion of their first combat action in 2979 during the so-called Tripitz Affair. After ROM learned that the Taurian Concordat had discovered an ancient Black Lion-class battlecruiser, the SLS Tripitz, in orbit around New Vandenburg, Primus Takami ordered the 1st Division to destroy the ship before the Taurian Concordat could recover it. Takami ordering them to paint their equipment stark white to prevent any link to the Order, despite their lack of practical combat experience, the 1st's advanced Star League-era equipment allowed them to defeat the Taurian forces in under an hour with only three deaths, before obliterating the WarShip. [5] [6]

Despite reservations in the First Circuit that an offensive response was against the neutrality professed by Jerome Blake, Takami countered that as long as the identity of ComStar's forces had been not discovered he had not breached the divine will of Blake. The 1st's success earned them new respect from the Order and Primus Takami specifically, who authorized an expansion of the Militia's 'Mech element based on their actions. Takami's order to paint ComStar Guard fighters white would later become the standard parade scheme for ComStar's military after their public unveiling. [5] [6]

The ComStar Guards and Militia's next combat action in 3004, though ultimately successful, was very nearly a disaster. ComStar's Jolly Roger plan was to provide material support to pirate bands operating along the Periphery borders of the Draconis Combine and Lyran Commonwealth to inflame fighting between the two powers. However, when the plan went sour after the pirates struck out on their own, then Primus Allen Rusenstein dispatched the 1st Division CO to negotiate with the renegades to bring them back into line, though when the first meeting ended in bloodshed it only made matters worse.[7] [6]

After the enraged pirates struck the ComStar HPG compounds on Lost and Canal, Primus Rusenstein ordered the 1st Division to wipe out "Black" Jack McGirk's forces. Tracking the pirates to the unmapped world of Trisha eight jumps into the Periphery, the 1st fought against McGirk's band for the better part of three days. While the 1st successfully completed their mission, the greater combat experience of the pirates gave them a 2.3 to 1 kill ratio against the numerically superior but still relatively untested ComStar forces. [7] [6]

Myndo Waterly and the Com Guards[edit]

The Com Guards participation in the Fourth Succession War was one of two points. The first was the fabrication of of video showing "Davion" troops attacking an HPG to justify placing an Interdiction of the Federated Suns. In May 3029, when the Fifth Syrtis Fusiliers invaded the planet Sarna, the local Com Guard garrison had their 'Mechs repainted and modeled to match the Fusiliers' machines, then informed that the local HPG station had betrayed Com Star and was selling technology to the Federated Commonwealth. Video footage of their destruction of the HPG station was used as "proof" to place the Federated Suns under interdiction on 1 June 3029.[8]

The second was a more daring stroke: in mid-August of 3029 Precentor Myndo Waterly presented to the First Circuit evidence that a copy of the Helm Memory Core was at the New Avalon Institute of Science. Precentor Waterly pressed the First Circuit to approve a military raid to destroy the copy, which they did, and a battalion-sized volunteer group of fanatical Com Guards was assembled. Their machines were fashioned to look like those of the Capellan Confederation's Death Commandos and they were provided with suicide pills to prevent capture; victory or death were the only allowable outcomes of the raid. On 10 September, the "Death Commandos" made a combat drop onto the NAIS campus, taking the facility by surprise at first. However, through the combined efforts of the NAIS security detail, Team Banzai, and even First Prince Hanse Davion himself in his BattleMaster, the attackers were wiped out and the the Helm Core saved.[8][9]

While these operations were less than successful, the attack on the Sarna facility gave newly-elected Primus Waterly sufficient pretext to make the Com Guards public. In response to this act of aggression, she announced the "creation" of the Com Guards with the stated goal of safeguarding ComStar's HPGs. As a condition of lifting the Interdiction, she convinced the Federated Suns to allow Com Guard garrison on all Federation worlds with an HPG station.[6]

Anastasius Focht and Expansion Years[edit]

Selected by Waterly to replace Nicholas Cassnew, Anastasius Focht was named Precentor ROM primarily to command the Com Guards, focusing the bulk of his attention on making a number of organization changes to the Guards as he began to take over from the mercenary commanders formerly directing the Com Guard deployment. Focht's service as head of ROM proved relatively smooth until First Prince Hanse Davion launched Operation Flush, a mass purge of ROM elements in the Federated Commonwealth in 3034. Displeased with Focht's "soft-handed" response to Flush, Waterly proposed the Readjustment Act of 3035 which saw ROM and the Com Guards separated, naming the aggressive Charles Seneca as the new Precentor ROM and creating the position of Precentor Martial for Focht, placing him purely in direct command of the Com Guards. [10] [11] [12]

Precentor Martial Focht was kept busy as Primus Waterly set about adopting a carrot and stick approach to get the other Successor States to agree to accept Com Guard forces within their borders. Thanks to Thomas Marik's previous service in the order and the offer of ROM aid in the capture of Dame Catherine Humpherys, the new Captain-General readily agreed to allow Focht to post troops at the Free Worlds League's HPG stations. The Capellan Confederation and the Lyran Commonwealth were much harder, but a 3038 agreement to waive a threatened 25 percent increase in transmission costs for Capellan HPG traffic and a unsanctioned "terrorist" action by the Free Skye movement, in return for Waterly's secret offer of favored-user status to the group, finally forced their hands in 3041. [13]

It was during the 3040s that Focht would instigate sweeping changes to the deployment and organization of the Com Guards, assigning the component elements of each battalion, division and army to positions that would allow them rapidly reform into their larger functional units as required and further enhance their mix of infantry, Combat Vehicles and AeroSpace Fighters. Cementing the combined arms focus of his troops via extensive training for any contingency both at Sandhurst Royal Military College and frequent training drills, Focht would tour the worlds upon which the Com Guards were stationed for two months every year.

With the Guards now posted across the length and breadth of the Inner Sphere, Focht expanded on efforts to promote the Com Guards' neutral and pacifistic stance by deploying his troops to assist with relief efforts for natural disasters, hostage rescues, political unrest and search and rescue operations. The most notable of these was Focht's deployments of the Com Guards to defend Periphery border worlds against pirate raiders, a propaganda boon and recruitment tool for the Order, with the public unaware that many were bandits who'd received a measure of support from ComStar during the Jolly Roger Affair. [14]

As of 3049, Wolfnet estimated the Com Guards' BattleMech strength alone to represent the equivalent of more than fifty Regiments.[15]

Battle of Tukayyid[edit]

Main article: Battle of Tukayyid

When the Clan Invasion began in 3049, ComStar initially aligned itself with the Clan invaders. However, when ilKhan Ulric Kerensky revealed to ComStar's leaders than the Clans' objective was to conquer Terra, ComStar turned on their allies. Anastasius Focht struck a deal to fight a Trial of Possession for Terra on the backwater world of Tukayyid, pitting the elite of the Clan's invasion force against the entirety of the Com Guards - 72 divisions, equal to 144 combined-arms regiments. In their first large-scale combat, the Com Guards won but at a high price, suffering over 40% casualties in all. Their victory though bound the Clans to the Truce of Tukayyid and gave the Inner Sphere valuable time to find a solution to the Clans.

Post-Tukayyid[edit]

In the aftermath of the battle of Tukayyid, the Com Guards were deployed extensively throughout the remnants of the Free Rasalhague Republic as a safeguard should the Clans break their truce. Their recovery after Tukayyid however was slow to come: Operation Scorpion deteriorated severely ComStar's image, and after the death of Primus Mindo Waterly (rumored to be at hands of Anastasius Focht), and the creation of the Word of Blake splinter group, at least four divisions of Com Guards defected to form the Word of Blake Militia. While such defections were not given much heed at first, it was with much chagrin when these same troops launched Operation ODYSSEUS, defeating the Com Guards on Terra and seizing ComStar's capital for the Word of Blake.

The Com Guards provided significant numbers of troops to the reborn Second Star League's Operation Bulldog and Serpent, which sought to destroy Clan Smoke Jaguar as an entity, and the Great Refusal afterwards which put a permanent end to the resumption of the Clan Invasion. In the immediate aftermath, Focht retired from his post as Precentor Matrial, nominating in his place Victor Steiner-Davion. Under his leadership the Com Guards began to take a more active role across the Inner Sphere, deploying as peacekeepers under the aegis of the Second Star League Defense Force in conflict such as the Capellan-St. Ives War. During the FedCom Civil War, Victor temporarily set aside his title as Precentor Martial, though a small number of rogue Com Guard units chose to fight alongside (and against) him.

The Jihad[edit]

During the Word of Blake Jihad the Com Guards took heavy casualties from almost the opening salvos of the conflict. Casualties became heavy enough that Precentor Martial Victor Steiner-Davion instituted an Inner Sphere-wide recruitment program, but despite the recruitment efforts the losses due to retirement and combat were so high that it wasn't until May 3075 that recruitment outstripped casualties and natural wastage for the first time.[16]

Dissolution[edit]

After the end of the Jihad, ComStar was forced to divest itself of the Com Guards. The many soldiers who were Com Guards either retired or in many cases went on to join the armed forces of The Republic of the Sphere.[17] Several higher ranking officers went on to serve as instructors at various military academies.[18]

Dark Age[edit]

Though ComStar was now officially a private enterprise with no standing army, Malcolm Buhl had in secret reformed the Com Guard First Division as a neo-Blakist group under the name Blessed Order. When Gray Monday sabotage nearly the entire HPG network in the Inner Sphere, Buhl made the fateful decision in 3135 to use the Blessed Order to save Tucker Harwell, a technician believed to have found a solution to the problem, and return him to their secret base on Luyten 68-28. However, the Republic of the Sphere became aware of the group's existence and launched a strike in 3140 to destroy them. While the Blessed Order managed to escape, they were cornered at their secret base on Epsilon Eridani and destroyed in 3141. The resulting incident led to the forceful integration of ComStar into the Republic.[19]

Structure[edit]

The ComStar Guards and Militia were overseen by the Precentor ROM until the Readjustment Act of 3035, when the new position of Precentor Martial was created.[11] The Precentor Martial was the commander-in-chief of the rechristened Com Guards, reporting directly to the Primus and the First Circuit. Both ROM and the Explorer Corps were made departments in the Com Guards, along with four new departments overseeing the infantry, armor, 'Mech and naval branches. Each was headed by a Precentor with at least ten years' experience in their relevant arms. While some took an interest in the day-to-day operations, others focused more on the overall picture, involving themselves in recruitment, training and procurement for their branch.[20]

Below them were the commanders of the twelve Armies which made up the Com Guards. Prior to the Battle of Tukayyid, the Inner Sphere was divided like a clock into twelve theaters, with one Army of roughly six divisions assigned to each theater. Afterwards, losses from both Tukayyid and Schism defections forced major reductions. Armies now averaged only four divisions, and some theaters (such as the Sixth and Seventh) left unoccupied to bolster defenses around the Clan Occupation Zones.[20]

Doctrine[edit]

In the first years after going public, the Com Guards often aped the brute-force tactics of the mercenaries who filled out their ranks and trained their first recruits, which led to initially poor results.[21] Under the guiding hand of Anastasius Focht, the Com Guards began to develop their own style, taking on more of a combined-arms approach even at the smallest level and increased flexibility so that different units could quickly assemble into larger forces and fight in an effective manner.[14] By 3049, the Com Guards were considered quite efficient in combined-arms operations at the battalion-level or lower, though on more strategic scales coordination tended to break down, necessitating yearly exercises.[21]

The Com Guards' dedication to combined-arms warfare could best be seen in the way they organized their units. Prior to Focht's involvement, the Com Guards were set up much like the Federated Suns' Regimental Combat Teams, though with the units spread out across many different worlds, but this was soon changed as the Precentor Martial used his military knowledge to make significant reforms.[14] Unlike Successor States' 4-unit and Clan 5-unit groupings, the new Com Guards based their forces on multiples of six. The Com Guard's equivalent of a Lance or Star was a Level II, made up of six Level I units. In many cases a Level II was made up of all one unit type, though just as often it frequently consisted of mixed unit types. Six Level IIs made up a Level III, which is usually referred to as a Battalion; almost always a combined-arms formation, it was usually the largest formation to operate together on a regular basis. A Level IV, made of up of six Level III units, was called a Division and equivalent to two Regiments. Forming the backbone of the administrative network, they were the largest permanent field formations in the Com Guards. A Level V formation, known as an Army, consisted of six Level IV formations. Outside of such rare instances as the Battle of Tukayyid, Level Vs were primarily administrative groupings, with one each assigned to a theater.[22]

Standard ComStar Unit Structure[22]
Rank Unit Consists of
Acolyte/Adept Level I 1 'Mech or armored vehicle or aerospace fighter,
or single infantry unit (28 standard or 4 Battle Armor).
Adept Level II Six Level I units, often referred to as a Demi-Company.
Adept/Demi-Precentor Level III Six Level II units, 36 elements, referred to as a Battalion.
Precentor Level IV Six Level III units, 216 elements, alternately referred to as a Division.
Level V Six Level IV units, between 846-1,296 elements, alternately referred to as an Army.
Precentor Martial ComGuards Varies

Equipment[edit]

Thanks to the large volume of Star League Defense Force hardware carefully and meticulously stockpiled, lack of military adventurism and ROM's efforts to cripple the Great House's overall level of technology, the Com Guards maintained the most technically advanced military in the Inner Sphere prior to the arrival of the Clans. The Com Guards possessed many vintage Star League-era machines not normally found in the armies of the Successor States: BattleMechs like the Mercury and Thug, Aerospace Fighters like the Tomahawk, and AFVs like the Burke and Gabriel.[22][23] Their infantry wore personal armor approximating that worn by the original SLDF and continued to use vintage SLDF weapons, like the Mauser 960 Assault System, which remained in working order. They also maintained in secret the Nighthawk Power Armor (Light) (PAL), which was used to develop the Tornado PAL.

Of the 500 SLDF bases which once dotted Terra, the Com Guards utilized 200 of these, while the remainder were the remaining sealed for future use. Terra's Castles Brian were used to secretly store its vast stockpiles of military hardware, and the planet's Space Defense System remained a closely guarded secret should the planet come under attack.[24]

The Com Guards also were the only Inner Sphere entity to maintain a fleet of WarShips up until the recovery of the Helm Memory Core, as the respective Successor State navies had destroyed theirs in the Second Succession War. These were kept in hiding at the uninhabited Luyten 68-28 and Ross 248 star systems.[25]

Recovering from the terrible material losses suffered on Tukayyid could not be met by their stockpiles alone though, necessitating the restarting of mothballed factories in the Terran system. These included the old Blankenburg Technologies factory in the state of Michigan, along with the Krupp Armament Works in Germany and Skobel MechWorks in Russia. These built not only pre-existing Star League-era 'Mechs but also new ones like the Grim Reaper, Nexus and Raijin.[26] The Titan Yards were also upgraded to start producing modern WarShip designs like the Suffren-class destroyer.

Unfortunately the loss of Terra due to Operation Odysseus cut the Com Guards off from these production lines, forcing the Com Guards to reach out to the Great Houses to help rebuild. Good relations with the Federated Commonwealth and Draconis combine allowed for the purchase of many of their designs, while efforts to expand production lines within the Free Rasalhague Republic led to the co-development of new designs such as the Beowulf, Helios, Tessen and Viking BattleMechs, Huscarl OmniFighter and Kobold Battle Armor

However, just when the Com Guards needed them the most to make up losses suffered in the Jihad, the conclusion of the alliance between Clan Ghost Bear and the Republic to create the Rasalhague Dominion denied them access to these new factories, and the Great Houses' own need to rebuild their equally shattered forces restricted sales to the Order. By the last years of the Jihad, while still funding co-production agreements that resulted in designs like the Mongoose II 'Mech, the Com Guards relied heavily on Succession War-style battlefield salvage just to remain combat viable.

Com Guards Unit Roster[edit]

The basic ComStar military unit is the Division or Level IV, roughly parallel to two SLDF-era regiments or a single Regimental Combat Team (RCT). Normally each Division is assigned to an Army or Level V. Upon the Guard's public unveiling there were thirteen Armies, each consisting of six Divisions Each Army was assigned an "hour" on the Inner Sphere Clock, with the thirtheenth serving as the Terran Defense Force, but the ejection of ComStar from the Free Worlds League and Guards' new focus on the Clans led to larger volumes being assigned "north" of Terra. Continuing losses after the FedCom Civil War, Operation Case White and the early years in the Jihad led Guards to reorganize and reduce the twelve armies down to six, one of each of the five Great Houses and sixth for the Periphery and minor states.

While the Division is the most commonly encountered field unit, unlike a Successor State regiment due to the Com Guards role in defending the numerous ComStar HPG compounds throughout the Inner Sphere, they are commonly split into Level III, II, or I groups depending on the importance or level of risk attack of the worlds within their assigned Theater.

Active Armies[edit]

These armies were active as of 1st August 3067.[27]

1st Army – Level V-Kappa (The Bear Maulers)[edit]

Main article: 1st Army (ComStar)

Assigned the Dieron Theater, from 1 to 2 on the Inner Sphere Clock, the ComGuard 1st Army primarily faced Clan Ghost Bear during the Battle of Tukayyid, adopting the nickname of The Bear Maulers.[28]


2nd Army – Level V-Mu (The Iron Warriors)[edit]

Main article: 2nd Army (ComStar)

Assigned to the Fomalhaut Theater, from 2 to 3 on the Inner Sphere Clock, elements of the Com Guards 2nd Army faced all the Clans save the Ghost Bears during the Battle of Tukayyid, adopting the name of The Iron Warriors.


3rd Army – Level V-Lambda (The Emerald Falconeers)[edit]

Main article: 3rd Army (ComStar)


Assigned to the Caph Theater, from 3 to 4 on the Inner Sphere Clock, the ComGuard 3rd Armys performance against Clan Jade Falcon during the Battle of Tukayyid was only enhanced by its participation in Operations Bulldog and Serpent, leading it to adopt the nickname The Emerald Falconeers.


4th Army – Level V-Iota (The Defenders of Honor)[edit]

Main article: 4th Army (ComStar)

Assigned to the Bryant Theater, from 4 to 5 on the Inner Sphere Clock, the Com Guard 4th Army served as a reserve force during the Battle of Tukayyid facing multiple Clans, and as the primary SLDF peacekeeping force in St. Ives Compact, being known as The Defenders of Honor.


5th Army – Level V-Omicron (The Mountaineers)[edit]

Main article: 5th Army (ComStar)

Assigned to the New Home Theater, from 5 to 6 on the Inner Sphere Clock, the ComStar 5th Army faced multiple Clans during the Battle of Tukayyid and extensive action in the Chaos March, being known as The Mountaineers.


6th Army – Level V-Kappa (Grim Defiance)[edit]

Main article: 6th Army (ComStar)

Nominally assigned to the Procyon Theater, 6 to 7 on Inner Sphere Clock, after the collapse of the Sarna March the ComGuard 6th Army were assigned to the Draconis Combine theaters, calling themselves Grim Defiance.[29]


7th Army – Level V-Iota (The Dark Wave)[edit]

Main article: 7th Army (ComStar)

Nominally assigned to the Talitha Theater, from 7 to 8 on the Inner Sphere Clock, the Com Guard 7th Army inflicted heavy losses against Clan Nova Cat on Tukayyid, being now known as The Dark Wave.


8th Army – Level V-Pi (Stern Defiance)[edit]

Main article: 8th Army (ComStar)

Assigned to the Castor Theater, 7 to 8 on the Inner Sphere Clock, the ComGuard 8th Army is located on the border of Lyran and Marik space, making it a prime target for Blakist terrorist attacks, being known as Stern Defense.


9th Army – Level V-Lambda (The Rag Tags)[edit]

Main article: 9th Army (ComStar)

Assigned to the New Earth Theater, from 9 to 10 on the Inner Sphere Clock, the ComGuard 9th Army faced multiple Clans during the Battle of Tukayyid before being disbanded to reinforce other armies during the Word of Blake Jihad.


10th Army – Level V-Nu (The Red Legion)[edit]

Main article: 10th Army (ComStar)

Assigned to the Rigil Kentarus Theater, 10 to 11 on the Inner Sphere Clock, the ComGuard 10th Army took a battering against Clan Wolf during the Battle of Tukayyid before serving along side Clan Wolf-in-Exile in the Arc-Royal Defense Cordon, calling themselves The Red Legion.


11th Army – Level V-Eta (The Honorable)[edit]

Main article: 11th Army (ComStar)

Assigned to the Yorii Theater, from 11 to 12 on the Inner Sphere Clock, the ComGuard 11th Army faced Clans Jade Falcon and Wolf during the Battle of Tukayyid, adopting the title of The Honorable.


12th Army – Level V-Beta (The Broadsword and Shield)[edit]

Main article: 12th Army (ComStar)

Assigned to the Tukayyid Theater, the renamed pre-Clan Invasion Asta theater or 12 to 1 on the Inner Sphere Clock, after the Battle of Tukayyid, the elite ComGuard Twelfth Army was stationed in the remains of the Free Rasalhague Republic, placing them in the direct path between a renewed Clan offensive.


Former Armies[edit]

Terran Defense Force – Level V-Beta[edit]

Main article: Terran Defense Force

The corner-stone of ComStar's military, the Terran Defense Force was destroyed during the Word of Blake's Operation Odysseus.


ComStar WarShip Fleet[edit]

Due to their retention of Star League era technology and relative lack of military adventurism in the Succession Wars, prior to the Jihad ComStar boasted the largest active WarShip fleet in Inner Sphere. Consisting of a mixture of both SLDF ships left behind by the Exodus Fleet and limited construction of new designs during the Com Guard's foundation, these ships are primarily divided into the two fleets, the Com Guard 1st and 2nd Fleets are stationed in the uninhabited Luyten 68-28 and Ross 248 systems. The bulk of Comstar's WarShip fleet was destroyed during the disastrous Case White assault on Blakist Terra.

Military Academies[edit]

Prior to the Blakist capture of Terra, nearly all Com Guards personnel were trained at the Sandhurst Royal Military College located in Berkshire, England on Terra. Some were recruited from the other existing military units or from the academies of the Successor States, but for security reasons the number of soldiers acquired this way was kept small. After the Battle of Tukayyid a separate training grounds was set up on the planet, and ComStar had recently reopened the War Academy of Mars. However both Sandhurst and WAM were lost after Operation Odysseus cut ComStar off from the Terran system, forcing the Com Guards to rely on Tukayyid and the other Successors States to chip in until a new academy, the Focht War College, opened in October 3060, with the first class graduating two years later.[30]

Ranks[edit]

Prior to the 3030s, the Com Guards used a ranking system roughly similar to that found elsewhere in the Inner Sphere, primarily in the course of dealing with or pretending to be mercenaries, while maintaining the corresponding ComStar ranks for administrative purposes. After they were made public, the Com Guards switched to more closely align their military ranks with the existing ComStar hierarchy, though many standard military ranks continued to be recognized in practice.[31] The Com Guards use a ranking system roughly similar to the civilian branch of ComStar, with Acolytes equivalent to enlisted ranks, Adepts equivalent to junior officers, Demi-Precentors and Precentors the senior officers, with the sole exception being the rank of Precentor Martial. Created by Primus Waterly with the reorganization and public unveiling of the Com Guards, the Precentor Martial is the overall commander of ComStar military forces.[32]

Like the civilian ComStar, seniority is indicated by a Roman numeral equal to one year at that rank, with the lowest being I, their first year at current rank and the highest XXV, or twenty-five years at current rank, while the branch is designated by a Greek letter. After an individual has attained a seniority level of XXV they are automatically promoted to the next rank and their seniority level reset back to I. The Com Guard/ROM maintain the following unique branch designations:[32]

Greek Letter Branch Designation
Epsilon
MechWarrior
Pi
Aerospace Pilot
Iota
Infantry
Xi
DropShip Crew
Theta
JumpShip/WarShip Operations/Crew
Zeta
Military Technician
Mu
Intelligence Analysis
Rho
Intelligence Gathering
Lambda
Ground Armor Crew/Pilot

Rank Insignia[edit]

Shows theta symbol, indicating JumpShip/WarShip crew. Other service branches replace theta with appropriate Greek letter.

Com Guard/Word of Blake Militia Insignia
Rank Com Guards Insignia
Acolyte Comstar-Acolyte.png
ComStar Acolytes use a ComStar logo with a gray halo to show their rank.
Adept Comstar-Adept.png
ComStar Adepts use a ComStar logo with a blue halo to show their rank.
Demi-Precentor Comstar-DemiPrecentor.png
Formalized by Comstar as a rank after the Schism, ComStar's Demi-Precentor features the ComStar logo with a blue-yellow-red halo to show their rank "midway" position between Adepts and Precentors.
Precentor Comstar-Precentor.png
ComStar Precentors use a ComStar logo with a red halo to show their rank.


See Also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. 1.0 1.1 ComStar (sourcebook), p. 42 "Age of Enlightenment"
  2. Field Manual: ComStar, p. 12 "The New Dawn"
  3. 3.0 3.1 ComStar (sourcebook), p. 43 "Age of Enlightenment"
  4. ComStar (sourcebook), p. 44 "Calm before the Storm"
  5. 5.0 5.1 ComStar, p. 46 "The Tripitz Affair"
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 6.3 6.4 Field Manual: ComStar, p. 13 "The Com Guards - Bait and Switch"
  7. 7.0 7.1 ComStar, p. 49 "The Jolly Roger Affair"
  8. 8.0 8.1 ComStar, p. 57
  9. ComStar, p. 58
  10. ComStar, p. 60 "Rosebud"
  11. 11.0 11.1 ComStar, pp. 61-62 "Flush"
  12. Historical: War of 3039, p.66 "Shadow Wars - The ROM War"
  13. ComStar, pp. 62-63 "Spread of the Com Guards"
  14. 14.0 14.1 14.2 ComStar, p. 64 "War of 3039 - Aftermath"
  15. 20 Year Update, p. 70
  16. Jihad Hot Spots: 3076, p. 33, "New Com Guard Recruitment Drive A Success"
  17. Field Manual: 3085, pp. 32, 166, 176
  18. Field Manual: 3085, pp. 172-173
  19. Field Manual: 3145, pp. 135-138 - Republic's forces history in Fortress Walls, Origin of the technology of the Fortress, hunt for the renegade ComStar Forces.
  20. 20.0 20.1 Field Manaul: ComStar, p. 15
  21. 21.0 21.1 20 Year Update, p. 69
  22. 22.0 22.1 22.2 Field Manual: ComStar, p. 8
  23. Field Manual: ComStar, p. 9
  24. ComStar, p. 86
  25. Field Manual: ComStar, p. 44
  26. ComStar, p. 82
  27. Field Manual: Updates, p. 98-99
  28. Field Manual: ComStar, pp. 20-21, "1st Army (ComStar) Profile"
  29. Field Manual: ComStar, p. 30, "6th Army (ComStar) Profile"
  30. Field Manual: ComStar, p. 16-17
  31. A Time of War Companion, p. 38-39
  32. 32.0 32.1 Field Manual: ComStar, p. 10

Bibliography[edit]