The United States Navy (USN) is the naval warfare service branch of the United States Armed Forces and one of the seven uniformed services of the United States. It is the largest navy in the world, with a battle fleet tonnage that is greater than that of the next 13 largest navies combined. The U.S. Navy also has the world's largest carrier fleet, with 11 in service, one under construction (two planned), and one in reserve. The service has 318,406 personnel on active duty and 108,718 in the Navy Reserve. It operates 288 ships in active service and more than 3,700 aircraft.
The Navy traces its origins to the Continental Navy, which was established during the American Revolutionary War and was essentially disbanded as a separate entity shortly thereafter. The United States Constitution provided the legal basis for a military force by giving Congress the power "to provide and maintain a navy".
Depredations against U.S. shipping by Barbary Coast pirates in the Mediterranean Sea spurred Congress to employ this power by passing the Naval Act of 1794 ordering the construction and manning of six frigates. These ships were used to end most pirate activity off the Barbary Coast. In the 20th century, American blue-water navy capability was demonstrated by the 1907–1909 world tour of the Great White Fleet.
The 21st century United States Navy maintains a sizable global presence, deploying in such areas as East Asia, the Mediterranean, and the Middle East. It is a blue-water navy with the ability to project force onto the littoral regions of the world, engage in forward areas during peacetime, and rapidly respond to regional crises, making it an active player in U.S. foreign and defense policy.
The Navy is administratively managed by the Department of the Navy, which is headed by the civilian Secretary of the Navy. The Department of the Navy is itself a division of the Department of Defense, which is headed by the Secretary of Defense. The Chief of Naval Operations is currently held by Admiral Jonathan Greenert. This position is traditionally the highest ranking naval officer (O-10 on the pay chart), but the current highest ranking naval officer is the Vice Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, Admiral James Winnefeld.
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... Main article List of United States Navy people Many past and present United States historical figures have served in the Navy ... include John Paul Jones, John Barry (Continental Navy officer and first flag officer of the United States Navy), James Lawrence (whose last words "don't give up the ship" are memorialized in ... A number of presidents served in the Navy before or early in their political careers, including John F ...
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Famous quotes containing the words united states, navy, united and/or states:
“God knows that any man who would seek the presidency of the United States is a fool for his pains. The burden is all but intolerable, and the things that I have to do are just as much as the human spirit can carry.”
—Woodrow Wilson (18561924)
“I call to mind the navy great
That the Greeks brought to Troye town,
And how the boistous winds did beat
Their ships, and rent their sails adown;
Till Agamemnons daughters blood
Appeased the gods that them withstood.”
—Henry Howard, Earl Of Surrey (1517?1547)
“In the United States, it is now possible for a person eighteen years of age, female as well as male, to graduate from high school, college, or university without ever having cared for, or even held, a baby; without ever having comforted or assisted another human being who really needed help. . . . No society can long sustain itself unless its members have learned the sensitivities, motivations, and skills involved in assisting and caring for other human beings.”
—Urie Bronfenbrenner (b. 1917)
“Todays difference between Russia and the United States is that in Russia everybody takes everybody else for a spy, and in the United States everybody takes everybody else for a criminal.”
—Friedrich Dürrenmatt (19211990)