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Military unit

The term military unit is used to refer to any group of two or more soldiers. Armies are divided into groups of various sizes according to function and for tactical and administrative purposes. This article gives an overview of some of the terms used to describe military units in armed forces across the world. Whilst it is recognised that there will be differences between armies of different nations, it seems that a large proportion are modelled on the British and/or American models. Readers interested in the detailed specifics of a national army (including the British and American) should consult the relevant entry for that country.

Typical military units in an army
NameNumber of personnelNumber of subordinate unitsOfficer in charge
Corps30,000+VariesLieutenant General
Division10,000–20,0002-4 brigadesMajor General
Brigade2000–50002+ regiments or
3-6 battalions
Brigadier General
Regiment (UK)650+1+ battalionsBrigadier or Colonel
Battalion300–10002–6 companiesLieutenant Colonel
Company150–3003–6 platoonsCaptain
Platoon30–402+ squadsFirst or Second lieutenant
Squad8–122+ fireteamsNCO (Staff Sergeant)
Fireteam (Mostly USA)4–5n/aNCO (Sergeant)

In addition to these, further units include Section and Squadron. Army, Army Group and Theater are all large units which vary significantly between armed forces in size and hierarchy position.

See also