Defense of the Free State: The Alban Self-Defense Forces

The Alban Self-Defense Forces (ASDF) form the core of the Alban Department of Defense, one of the thirteen Executive Departments of State of the Alban Commonwealth. The constitutional Commander-in-Chief of the Alban Self-Defense Forces is the civilian Censor of State, whose authority is exercised through the Secretary of Defense, the civilian head of the Defense Department, in the execution of whose authority the Secretary is permitted the appointment of any number of deputies and assistants. In the execution of his duties, the Secretary of Defense is assisted by the Chairman of the Joint Defense Staff, the statutory senior-ranking officer of the ASDF in the grade of General or Admiral. The Chairman is the constitutional chief military executor and advisor to the Censor. The Department of Defense oversees the registrar of all individuals residing within the Commonwealth based on their individual eligibility for conscription.

The Alban Land Self-Defense Force (LSDF) is the ground warfare component of the ASDF. The Force is made up of 36 maneuver brigades which are principally organized as mechanized infantry and armored cavalry, with each bridge employing on average some 4,500 personnel under the command of a Colonel. Brigades are typically paired as groups under the supervision of a Brigadier General, while concentrations of three or more brigades are more commonly commanded by a Major General. When supporting forces are added, the combined force constitutes a mobile field force under the command of a Lieutenant General. Major administrative commands are overseen by officers in the grade of Lieutenant General, and as body they constitute the the principal advisors to the Chief of Staff of the Alban Land Self-Defense Force, who is by statute an officer in the grade of General and the service’s senior-ranking officer.

The Alban Orbital Self-Defense Force (OSDF) is the space warfare component of the ASDF. Consisting of a fleet of 500 spaceships and more than 10,000 manned and unmanned spacecraft, the Force is stationed across some one hundred fifty facilities. The port captain in command of the facility garrison and its operations is an officer in the grade of Captain who is the counterpart to the spaceship squadron’s commodore, another officer in the grade of Captain. The spacecraft component of the commodore’s squadron is commanded by the wing captain, an officer in the grade of Captain. When operating independent of a higher authority, the squadron commodore assumes overall command, while a flag officer in the grade of Commodore-Admiral would oversee these three component commands. Concentrations of these formations are grouped as fleets under the command of a Vice Admiral. Vice Admirals likewise oversee the Force’s major commands and as body constitute the principal advisors to the Chief of Staff of the Alban Orbital Self-Defense Force, who is by statue a flag officer in the grade of Admiral and the service’s senior-ranking officer.

The Commonwealth Constabulary Guard (CCG) is the military police force of the ASDF. Guard Regiments are organized as light infantry companies of 90-120 armed constables principally trained in the enforcement of civil law. In such peace actions, they are deputized by the Department of Law and Order and are under the operational supervision of the Department of the Home Interior, while remaining administratively subordinate to the Chief of Staff of the Alban Land Self-Defense Force. The CCG can call upon the support of LSDF assets and troopers in their capacity as law enforcement for a set period of time. Constables called upon by the LSDF in support of military operations are at once transferred to the operational supervision of the LSDF as a light infantry or reconnaissance component for an indefinite period of time. Guard Regiments are commanded by a section chief in the grade of Colonel and are the tactical equivalent of an LSDF brigade. Regiments are grouped as regional departments under the authority of a Deputy Commissioner (Brigadier General). An Assistant Commissioner (Major General) oversees departments within the Guard. The Guard is under the command of a Lieutenant General entitled Commissioner who is advised by a body of other officers in the same grade, who all in turn advise the appointed Chief Commissioner, the equivalent of the Chiefs of Staff as the principal constabulary advisory to the Censor of State.

The Asymmetric Resources Command (ARCOM) represents a fourth component of the ASDF, a joint command with responsibilities in strategic operations beyond Alban space. The articles of the Commonwealth’s founding specify that no military operations may be conducted beyond Alban territorial space, a theater of operations in which only the civilian National Intelligence Agency (NIA) may conduct operations. Although not officially confirmed, it is believed that ARCOM trains, readies, and organizes military assets for the use by the NIA. ARCOM operates under the direct authority of the Secretary of Defense through the Chairman of the Joint Defense Staff. As a result of the secretive nature of ARCOM units and operations, the total number of personnel or identities of the units under ARCOM remain highly classified. Units known to operate exclusively under ARCOM include the LSDF’s Asymmetric Operations Groups, the OSDF’s 160th Strategic Reconnaissance Wing, and the joint service Joint Command-Communications Group. Units which are known to regularly cycle between duties among the regular forces and ARCOM include the LSDF’s 35th Recondo Brigade and its Pathfinder Company, the OSDF’s Raider Squadron.

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