Service star

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Service Star
Silver and Bronze Service Stars.PNG
Bronze and silver 316 inch stars
TypeRibbon device
Awarded forWorn to denote subsequent awards or periods of service. [1]
Presented bythe United States
StatusCurrently in use

A service star is a miniature bronze or silver five-pointed star 316 inch (4.8 mm) in diameter that is authorized to be worn by members of the eight uniformed services of the United States on medals and ribbons to denote an additional award or service period. [1] The service star may also be referred to as a campaign star or battle star depending on which award the star is authorized for and the manner in which the device is used for the award. [2]

Contents

Stars on service ribbons Service stars on ribbons.jpg
Stars on service ribbons

Service stars, campaign stars, and battle stars are worn with one point of the star pointing up on the suspension ribbon of a medal or service ribbon. A silver star is worn instead of five bronze stars. [1] A service star is sometimes mistaken for a Bronze Star (Bronze Star Medal) or Silver Star (Silver Star Medal). The service star is also similar to the gold and silver 516 -inch stars that may be authorized to be worn on specific individual decorations of certain services to denote additional decorations.

Service stars

Expeditionary medals

Service stars are authorized for these United States expeditionary medals:

Enduring Freedom: Sep. 11, 2001 – to be determined (TBD)
Iraqi Freedom: Mar. 19, 2003 – Aug. 31, 2010
Nomad Shadow: Nov. 05, 2007 – TBD
New Dawn: Sep. 01, 2010 – Dec. 31, 2011
Inherent Resolve: Jun. 15, 2014 – TBD

Service medals

Service stars are authorized to denoted additional awards for these United States service medals:

For the National Defense Service Medal, the addition of bronze service stars to denote participation in four of the designated wartime conflicts would be shown as (the time span from the end of the Korean War era in 1954 to the beginning of the Global War on Terrorism era in 2001 is 47 years, so it is highly improbable that any individual qualified for all four National Defense Service Medals in each of four eras): [4]

Korean War
Vietnam War
Gulf War
War on Terrorism
National Defense Service Medal ribbon.svg First award: any one of four conflicts
Bronze-service-star-3d-vector.svg
National Defense Service Medal ribbon.svg
Second award: two of the four conflicts
Bronze-service-star-3d-vector.svg
Bronze-service-star-3d-vector.svg
National Defense Service Medal ribbon.svg
Third award: three of the four conflicts
Bronze-service-star-3d-vector.svg
Bronze-service-star-3d-vector.svg
Bronze-service-star-3d-vector.svg
National Defense Service Medal ribbon.svg
Fourth award: all four conflicts

Unit awards

Service stars are authorized for certain unit awards (The service ribbon itself indicates the first award, with a bronze service star being added to indicate the second and subsequent awards. If ever applicable, a silver service star is worn instead of five bronze stars.) such as the:

Campaign stars

Campaign stars are authorized for these United States campaign medals (bronze and silver campaign stars are worn to denote participation in a designated campaign or campaign phase or period): [2]

For each designated campaign participated in, one star is worn on the ribbon. For example, when a member is authorized to wear the Iraq Campaign Medal, the potential addition of bronze and silver service stars for the seven designated Iraq Campaign phases would be: [5] [6] [7]

Bronze-service-star-3d-vector.svg
Iraq Campaign Medal ribbon.svg
Any one of the seven phases
Bronze-service-star-3d-vector.svg
Bronze-service-star-3d-vector.svg
Iraq Campaign Medal ribbon.svg
Two of the seven phases
Bronze-service-star-3d-vector.svg
Bronze-service-star-3d-vector.svg
Bronze-service-star-3d-vector.svg
Iraq Campaign Medal ribbon.svg
Three of the seven phases
Bronze-service-star-3d-vector.svg
Bronze-service-star-3d-vector.svg
Bronze-service-star-3d-vector.svg
Bronze-service-star-3d-vector.svg
Iraq Campaign Medal ribbon.svg
Four of the seven phases
Silver-service-star-3d.svg
Iraq Campaign Medal ribbon.svg
Five of the seven phases
Silver-service-star-3d.svg
Bronze-service-star-3d-vector.svg
Iraq Campaign Medal ribbon.svg
Six of the seven phases
Silver-service-star-3d.svg
Bronze-service-star-3d-vector.svg
Bronze-service-star-3d-vector.svg
Iraq Campaign Medal ribbon.svg
All seven campaign phases

For many of these awards, service stars are earned by participation in campaign phases and all eligible periods for the award fall within those defined phases. In these cases, the campaign medal cannot be earned alone, and is always to be worn with at least one campaign star.

Battle stars

Since February 26, 2004, the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal and the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal (GWOT-SM) are authorized to be awarded with bronze and silver battle stars for personnel who were engaged in specific battles in combat under circumstances involving grave danger of death or serious bodily injury from enemy action. [8] [9] However, though authorized for wear, no battle stars have been approved for wear. Only a combatant commander can initiate a request for a battle star, and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff is the approving authority, [9] which since January 2016 has been eliminated by the Department of Defense for the GWOT-SM. [10]

Only one award of the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal and one award of the Global War on Terrorism Service Medal may be authorized for any individual. No service stars were authorized for the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary or Service Medal [9] until February 9, 2015, when the Department of Defense authorized service stars for the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal retroactive to September 11, 2001. [3]

Earlier service stars and battle stars

Service stars (were sometimes referred to as campaign stars or battle stars) were also authorized for the World War I Victory Medal, American Defense Service Medal, American Campaign Medal, European–African–Middle Eastern Campaign Medal, and Asiatic–Pacific Campaign Medal. The specific manner of wear and symbolism of the stars varied from medal to medal. For example, an American Campaign Medal with a bronze service star indicated the service member had participated in an antisubmarine campaign. On other medals, bronze service stars were used on the medal's service ribbon for those recipients of medals in possession of authorized campaign clasps for those medals.

Historically, during World War II and the Korean War, commendations called "battle stars" were issued to United States Navy warships for meritorious participation in battle, or for having suffered damage during battle conditions. As an example, the USS Enterprise (CV-6) received 20 battle stars for her combat service in World War II, more than any other U.S. vessel during World War II. Similarly, during the Vietnam War and afterwards, the Battle Effectiveness Award ("Battle E") took the place of receiving "battle stars" for superior battle efficiency in place of combat operations.[ citation needed ]

See also

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The United States Armed Forces authorize certain medal and ribbon devices that may be worn if authorized on a defined set of United States military decorations and awards. The devices vary between 316 inch to 1332 inch in size and are usually attached to suspension and service ribbons of medals and to unit award ribbons. The devices are usually made of brass or metal alloys that appear gold, silver, or bronze in color with either a dull or polished look. The devices may denote additional awards of the same decoration or award, an award for valor or meritorious combat service, participation in a particular campaign, periods of honorable service, specific events, and other special meanings. These are sometimes referred to as award devices, but are most commonly referred to in service regulations and Department of Defense instructions simply as "devices" for awards and decorations.

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Medal bar Thin metal bar attached to the ribbon of a medal as an additional award

A medal bar or medal clasp is a thin metal bar attached to the ribbon of a military decoration, civil decoration, or other medal. It most commonly indicates the campaign or operation the recipient received the award for, and multiple bars on the same medal are used to indicate that the recipient has met the criteria for receiving the medal in multiple theatres.

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Inherent Resolve Campaign Medal Award of the United States military

The Inherent Resolve Campaign Medal is a United States Department of Defense service award and campaign medal. The medal was established by Executive Order on 30 March 2016 by U.S. President Barack Obama. The medal may be awarded to members of the U.S. Army, Navy, Marine Corps, Air Force, and Coast Guard, for service in Iraq, Syria, or contiguous waters or airspace retroactively from 15 June 2014 to a date yet to be determined. Service members who were awarded the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal for service that is now covered by the Inherent Resolve Campaign Medal may make application to be awarded the Inherent Resolve Campaign Medal in lieu of the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal. No service member will be entitled to the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal and Inherent Resolve Campaign Medal for the same action, time period, or service.

References

  1. 1 2 3 4 "Manual of Military Decorations and Awards, Volume 3" (PDF). Department of Defense. Paragraph 15e (Page 67). Archived from the original (PDF) on March 22, 2011. Retrieved March 13, 2015.
  2. 1 2 "Manual of Military Decorations and Awards, Volume 3" (PDF). Department of Defense. Paragraph 15f-g (Page 67-68). Archived from the original (PDF) on March 22, 2011. Retrieved March 13, 2015.
  3. 1 2 3 "DoD Authorizes Service Stars on Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal". U.S. Department of Defense. Retrieved 9 February 2015.
  4. Air Force Personnel Center National Defense Service Presidential Unit Citation (Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard) Medal Archived 2014-07-19 at the Wayback Machine
  5. "Afghanistan Campaign Medal or Iraq Campaign Medal". Awards and Decorations Branch Article. Army Human Resource Command. Archived from the original on 11 September 2015. Retrieved 3 December 2012.
  6. Additional Phases Identified for Iraq Campaign Medal
  7. "News Release: Additional Phases Identified for Iraq and Afghanistan Campaign Medals". Defense.gov. Retrieved 2012-05-31.
  8. "Manual of Military Decorations and Awards, Volume 3" (PDF). Department of Defense. Paragraph 15g (Page 68). Archived from the original (PDF) on March 22, 2011. Retrieved March 13, 2015.
  9. 1 2 3 "DoD Announces Criteria for Global War on Terrorism Medals". U.S. Department of Defense. Retrieved 26 February 2004.
  10. item #29, Military Decorations and Awards Review Results, Department of Defense, January 2016