The Colonial Space Forces (CSF)
The official designation of that branch of the Colonial Military that involves interplanetary and interstellar warships, transports, tankers etc….
This has become, (even before Cimtar) in the public eye, the pre-eminent arm of the Colonial Military. When a civilian speaks of joining the Military, this is what he or she usually means.
Numerically speaking, the CPF was larger, over 7 to 1 then the CSF, (It takes a lot of troops to occupy a planet) but in terms of cost and investment the CSF was almost 15 to 1 greater then the CPF. (Star ships are really expensive!)
Although all Colonial Military spacecraft are armed, most are not warships. The bulk of the fleet is (or was) support craft. Tankers, Freighters, Troop ships, Recovery Ships, Hospital ships, Transports etc. For every warship there were four support ships.
The Colonial Space Forces (CSF) are divided into the following groups
Command Core: These Warriors are the trained specialists that command and operate the ships, they are the Bridge Staff. Ship commanders, navigators, sensor operators, astrogators, communication specialists, etc…
Warship commanders are almost universally former Viper or Shuttle Pilots. Senior officers in the CSF, (Colonel and up) especially those in command of combat elements, are expected to be able to command and handle ground forces as well as spacecraft.
Strike Group: These Warriors are the Viper and Asp pilots and crews. Also, because they are generally Reserve Viper or Asp pilots, the Shuttle pilots and crews. Only the Best of the Best make it into the Strike Group. It is Extremely Hazardous Duty and requires top notch reflexes, a keen mind and almost reckless courage. Warriors of the Strike Group are the ‘Special Forces’ of the CSF and are sometimes called on to lead SAW in boarding actions and similar assaults.
Most Warriors from the Strike Groups eventually move into the Command Core as they become too old and slow to make the grade as combat pilots. Those with a technical bent sometimes move into Engineering or R&D or medical fields. Some move into the CPF if they are so inclined.
Technical Support: A catch all that covers most of the other areas of the CSF, including, but not limited to, Engineering, Medical staff, supply and logistics (cooks, stewards, cargo handlers…) R&D work, civilian relations, etc… MOST of these people are NOT Warriors but are actually Technicians. Exceptions include some Med Techs and some senior officers that moved into the Support field later in their careers.