United States Coast Guard
The United States Coast Guard headquartered at Washington
plays a major role in the security operations, law-enforcement,
and maintenance of intercostals and offshore aids to navigation.
Since March 31, 2003, Coast Guard, under the Department
of Homeland Security,
directly reports to the Department of Defense as first fleet
of the United States.
The United States Coast Guard is a merger of the Revenue
Cutter Service and the National Life Saving Service, is
a part of the armed forces under Title 14 of the United
States Code, and the Chief Officer is from the rank of an
admiral as Commandant selected for four year term renewable
for further four year tenure only. The next in rank is the
Master Chief Petty Officer of the Coast Guard (MCPO), an
advisor to the Commandant.
The United States Coast Guard has different
units responsible for individual regions and one each for
maritime defense of Atlantic and Pacific Oceans, each under
the command of a Vice Admiral. Large operational centers
combining several functions are “Activities”
while smaller boat stations are Stations and Coast Guard
Air Stations handle aircraft operations. There are three
Air Stations at Morehead, Biloxi and Floyd Bennett Field
in Brooklyn, New York.
The United States Coast Guard Academy at New London, Connecticut
is the only of its kind where all appointments are on merit
only without any political interference. It commissions
around 170 new cadets every year and training includes a
stint as crew on the sail-powered training barque Eagle.
Apart from this Officers Candidate School at New London,
Connecticut is another academy through which around 70 officers
every year are inducted into the coast guard as lieutenant
junior grade officers. Such officers have to complete three
compulsory years of service with the United States Coast
Guard. The basic missions of the United States Coast
Guard are Maritime Safety, Maritime Mobility, Maritime
Security, National Defense and Protection of Natural Resources.