Difference Between Army and Navy

Army vs Navy

The difference between army and navy is basically in their duties and territories. Now, tell me, can you compare your left hand with your right hand, no matter you be a left hander or a right hander? A majority of tasks require the use of both hands, and you cannot say one is superior to other. Same is the case with army and navy, which are integral parts of a military. Unless a country is landlocked and does not require a navy to safeguard its territorial waters, a navy forms a vital cog in safety and integrity of the country. Let us find out the differences between army and navy in this article.

What is Army?

The word army comes from Greek armata meaning armed forces. In fact, in ancient times or as late as Roman Empire, the concept of an army was all that was there to describe the power of a state. It was army alone that was responsible to oversee the safety and security of a territory. In the earlier times, with the limited transportation, states only had to worry about their enemies who lived next to them. So, army alone was enough to handle the enemy. But the modern army is only the armed force that travels on land to reach enemy forces.

Difference Between- Army and Navy

What is Navy?

It was only much later that the concept of a separate force to look after maritime security of a nation began to take shape. This was a result of the development of transportation, as now countries were crossing waters to conquer other countries. It was of prime importance for a country having a large coastal area to safeguard its waters from any enemy movement from the waters. The creation of a sub unit in armed forces, dedicated to safety on water front meant lesser responsibility and thus more efficiency of army. So, the branch of armed forces dedicated to protecting the waters of a state is known as navy.

The rules and designs of a war have changed completely with time, and the traditional concept of charging ahead with infantry is a concept of a bygone era. Wars today are fought more in minds than on paper or actual battlefronts. Perhaps, today, more important than modern weapons and a large military is, a perpetual state of readiness and ability to launch a surprise attack on all fronts. No one can forget how Japan surprised US during the World War II with a brutal attack on Pearl Harbor, though US retaliated by bombing the cities of Nagasaki and Hiroshima. It was only after Pearl Harbor incident that US realized the importance of safeguarding its territorial waters and deployed a strong navy for the purpose.

If you pay more attention you can see that a navy is as helpful in diverting the attention of enemy as an army. Strikes deep inside a country are possible with the help of a navy much more easily without coming to notice of the enemy. In a similar manner, what an army finds difficult can be easily achieved with the help of a trained navy. Maritime security of a country is perhaps more significant today than its territorial integrity as terrorists and other subversive elements find it easier to strike targets inside a country through naval route than striking after coming inside the country. Thus, for countries like US and India, maintaining a powerful navy is perhaps even more significant than spending more and more on army alone. Another menace for countries having a long coastline is pirates that have been asking for ransom from countries in lieu of their cargo vessels and crew that these pirate hold hostage. It is naval force of a country that comes handy in these situations.

Army vs Navy

What is the difference between Army and Navy?

• Tasks:

• Army consists of infantry and armed soldiers that travel on the ground to attack enemies.

• Navy is the unit of army that is concerned with protecting the waters of the country. They act not only during war but even during times of peace when there are threats such as pirates.

• Collaboration:

• In a large scale war, the collaboration between army and navy is essential. Also, this division between army and navy in the territory they look after gives a country more protection.

• Ranks:

• In an army, there are different ranks for the officers such as Lieutenant General, Major General, Brigadier General, Colonel, Major, etc.

• In a navy, there are different ranks for the officers such Midshipman, Lieutenant, Commander, Captain, Rear Admiral, Admiral, etc.

• Missions:

• Army focuses on ground missions.

• Navy focuses on protecting the territorial waters of a country.

• Uniform:

• Army uniform is mostly green or brown colored so that the soldiers can blend in with the environment.

• The basic navy uniform is white. However, different units of the navy can have different uniforms.


Images Courtesy: U.S. Army Rangers of 3rd Battalion 75th Ranger Regiment  and US Navy via Wikicommons (Public Domain)