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First lieutenant

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

First lieutenant is a commissioned officer military rank in many armed forces and, in some forces, an appointment.

The rank of lieutenant has different meanings in different military formations (see comparative military ranks), but the majority of cases it is common for it to be sub-divided into a senior (first lieutenant) and junior (second lieutenant) rank. The NATO equivalent rank for land force officers is OF-1 rank. In navies, while certain rank insignia may carry the name: "lieutenant", the term may also be used to relate to a particular post or duty, rather than a rank.

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  • ✪ First Lieutenant, US Army | What I do & how much I make | Part 1 | Khan Academy
  • ✪ First Lieutenant, US Army | My budget & planning for the future | Part 3 | Khan Academy
  • ✪ First Lieutenant, US Army | How I got my job & where I'm going | Part 2 | Khan Academy
  • ✪ First lieutenant Meaning


My name is Lieutenant Soham Gupte. I'm 28 years old, I'm an officer in the United States Army, and I make $63,000 a year. So far this is my first duty station. I'm at Fort Stewart, Georgia, in Savannah. Officers in the Army are planners. Our job is to plan training for our soldiers, to plan combat operations, and then work with our non-commissioned officers to execute those events. And we supervise those events as well. A big part of being an officer in the United States Army is having property. So right now I am assigned for $30 million worth of property. That includes everything from our weapon systems to our vehicles, and all the components that are associated with it. I am signed for that property and then I sign it down to my soldiers and we conduct monthly inspections on it to ensure that nothing is missing and everything is functional. So as an armor officer, I'm given a scout platoon. My primary responsibility is to look out for the health, welfare, morale, training, tactical employment, and military readiness of my soldiers. I have roughly 32 soldiers under my command. And I have to ensure that they are ready at all times for any type of combat operations that the president may deem necessary. Secondary, but still very important, is to ensure that our six Bradly Fighting Vehicles are combat-ready. I have to ensure that my soldiers are conducting proper maintenance on them, and that we are essentially driving them to make sure they work at all times. We could get a mission at one o'clock in the morning and the commander can tell us, you need to move out or SP by five o'clock, in four hours. So I have four hours to conduct a map reconnaissance, to try and understand the terrain, and then create a plan for my soldiers to execute. So that is my primary job. My non-commissioned officers are the ones that execute that plan. I will maneuver the platoon around, but I really rely on my non-commissioned officers to give me the best advice possible because they have a wealth of experience and they've been in combat situations and done this. So that's a quick mission. Now, if the enemy is set further, or we're looking for a mission down the road, maybe a week out, we could be, as a scout platoon, we could be out for days or weeks at a time ahead of the decisive action elements, and conduct reconnaissance or security operations, understanding the threats, understanding the terrain, understanding the infrastructure, understanding the people, and then send that information back. They're really looking for us to provide timely and accurate data, and if we don't do that, the other units following behind us won't have all the information possible to decisively engage the enemy. I think for across the board as a officer in the United States military, you have to be mentally agile. You have to be able to adapt to any type of situation because at any given time things can change. First and foremost. You have to be trained on your individual tasks and the tactical employment of your soldiers. Your soldiers are looking to you to be an expert on that, to maneuver them properly, to lead them well. You have to have confidence, of course. You have to have the ability to stand in front of a group and present a plan clearly. You have to be able to write very well and present a plan succinctly as possible. The last element I would say is emotional intelligence. You have to know what triggers your soldiers and what motivates them. You have to be detail-oriented in this job, to do it successfully, of course, because there are a lot of things that come at you from every direction. Organization and being responsible, being level-headed. Because we are assigned for a lot of property, $30 million of property, you have to know what accounts for that, what's in that. You have to know it like your own personal items at home. And ultimately, again, you're responsible for it. You have to be organized in terms of training. You have to know what the soldiers need to be trained on, what tasks are coming down to you, and what needs to be executed first and what needs to be executed last. So you have to create a priority list, essentially. And that goes with organization. I love being around my soldiers. I love seeing them develop, seeing them grow, seeing them turn into professionals, from when we first got them after basic training. I love leading them and I love ensuring that their lives are whole. I particularly stress, for me, the finances for my soldiers, to make sure that they are financially secure, that their home lives are as good as possible because this is the type of profession where we need our soldiers to be level-headed and focused on the job 100% of the time. And there's very little room for them to worry about anything else. The most frustrating part is the paperwork, but that's what officers do. We are planners, so we have to be very good at the paperwork portion of our job. What I don't like about it is that it takes away from the time I get to spend with my men, the time I get to train with them, the time I get to develop them, or simply just talk to them. But that is, I understand it's a very important aspect of my job and it's needed because at the end of the day if I'm not completely squared away on that part of my job, everything else kind of goes to the wayside, it does not work. Across the armed forces, the salary is located on the internet. You can find out what you're going to make throughout your career. So a salary is typically, for an officer, it's broken down in three parts. You get your base pay, which is taxed. Then you get your basic housing allowance, which is not taxed and that's based on your rank and your location and dependents, if you have dependents. So as a single soldier, I make less than someone of my rank with a wife and children. The third part is sustenance pay for food. So two parts are not taxed, the latter two. The first part is. The pay chart grows as you increase in rank and as you continue to serve in the military. This is true for both the officer side and the enlisted non-commissioned officer side. So as I started as a second lieutenant. I started off, which is 01 pay in the military, I believe I was making roughly $3,000 a month, so $36,000 a year. And that increased little by little with rank and then with years of service. So the salary has doubled from the time that I started to where I am now.


United Kingdom

British Army

In the British Army and Royal Marines, the rank above second lieutenant is simply lieutenant (pronounced lef-tenant), with no ordinal attached.

Before 1871, when the whole British Army switched to using the current rank of "lieutenant", the Royal Artillery, Royal Engineers and fusilier regiments used "first lieutenant" and "second lieutenant".

Royal Navy

The first lieutenant (often abbreviated "1st Lt") in a Royal Navy ship is a post or appointment, rather than a rank.

Historically the lieutenants in a ship were ranked in accordance with seniority, with the most senior being termed the first lieutenant and acting as the second-in-command, unless the ship was complemented with a commander. Although lieutenants are no longer ranked by seniority, the post of "first lieutenant" remains. In minor war vessels, destroyers, frigates, and submarines, the first lieutenant is second in command, executive officer (XO) and head of the executive branch; in larger ships where a commander of the warfare specialization is appointed as the executive officer, a first lieutenant is appointed as his deputy. The post of first lieutenant in a shore establishment carries a similar responsibility to the first lieutenant of a capital ship. Colloquial terms in the Royal Navy for the first lieutenant include "number one", "the jimmy" (or "jimmy the one") and "James the First" (a back-formation referring to James I of England).[1]

United States

U.S. Army, U.S. Marine Corps, and U.S. Air Force insignia of the rank of first lieutenant. Style and method of wear vary between the services.
U.S. Army, U.S. Marine Corps, and U.S. Air Force insignia of the rank of first lieutenant. Style and method of wear vary between the services.
U.S. Army insignia of the rank of first lieutenant.
U.S. Army insignia of the rank of first lieutenant.
U.S. Marine Corps insignia of the rank of first lieutenant.
U.S. Marine Corps insignia of the rank of first lieutenant.
U.S. Air Force insignia of the rank of first lieutenant.
U.S. Air Force insignia of the rank of first lieutenant.

U.S. Army, U.S. Marine Corps and U.S. Air Force

In the U.S. Army, U.S. Marine Corps, and U.S. Air Force, a first lieutenant is a junior commissioned officer. It is just above the rank of second lieutenant and just below the rank of captain. It is equivalent to the rank of lieutenant (junior grade) in the other uniformed services.

Promotion to first lieutenant is governed by Department of Defense policies derived from the Defense Officer Personnel Management Act of 1980. DOPMA guidelines suggest all "fully qualified" officers should be promoted to first lieutenant. A second lieutenant (grade O-1) is usually promoted to first lieutenant (grade O-2) after 18 months in the Army or 24 months in the Marine Corps and Air Force. The difference between the two ranks is slight, primarily being experience and a higher pay grade. It is not uncommon to see officers moved to positions requiring more experience after promotion to first lieutenant. For example, in the Army and Marine Corps these positions can include leading a specialty platoon, or assignment as the executive officer for a company-sized unit (70–250 soldiers or marines). In the Air Force, a first lieutenant may be a flight commander or section's officer in charge with varied supervisory responsibilities, including supervision of as many as 100+ personnel, although in a flying unit, a first lieutenant is a rated officer (pilot, navigator, or air battle manager) who has just finished training for his career field and has few supervisory responsibilities.

Note: U.S. Marine Corps (USMC) first lieutenant insignia bars have squared off edges.[2]

U.S. Navy and U.S. Coast Guard

In the U.S. Navy and U.S. Coast Guard, "first lieutenant" is the name of a billet and position title, rather than rank. Officers aboard early sailing ships were the captain and a number of lieutenants. The senior among those lieutenants was known as the first lieutenant, and would have assumed command if the captain were absent or incapacitated.[3] As modern ships have become more complex, requiring specialized knowledge of engineering, communications, and weapons, the "first lieutenant" is the officer in command of the deck department responsible for line handling during mooring and underway replenishment. On smaller ships, the officer of the "first lieutenant" billet holds the rank of lieutenant, junior grade or ensign. On larger vessels, the position of "first lieutenant" is held by a lieutenant or, in the case of extremely large warships such as cruisers or aircraft carriers, the position of "first lieutenant" may be held by a lieutenant commander or even commander. However, on submarines and in aircraft squadrons, where the deck department may only have a few junior sailors, the "first lieutenant" billet may be filled by a first-class petty officer or chief petty officer. What is known in the U.S. Navy as the "first lieutenant division" is usually composed of junior sailors (E-3 and below) who are completing their ninety days of temporary assigned duty, or TAD, that all enlisted personnel are required to perform when initially assigned to a command. The primary mission of the division is servicing, cleaning, organizing and inventorying items within a command.[4]

U.S. Revenue Cutter Service

The term "first lieutenant" had a dual meaning in the U.S. Revenue Cutter Service. The position title of first lieutenant was held by a junior officer who was in charge of deck operations and gunnery. The rank of first lieutenant was the equivalent to lieutenant in the current rank structure of the U.S. Coast Guard and U.S. Navy. The next senior officer ranking above first lieutenant was captain and the next two lower officer ranks were second and third lieutenant, respectively. The rank of first lieutenant carried over to the formation of the U.S. Coast Guard in 1915 and was used until 1918, when the rank structure of the U.S. Navy was adopted.[5]


The First lieutenant rank insignia of the Indonesian Army
The First lieutenant rank insignia of the Indonesian Army

In Indonesia, "First lieutenant" is known as Letnan Satu (Lettu). The Lieutenant rank has two levels, which are:

Letda pdh ad.png Second lieutenant (Letda) and
Lettu pdh ad.png
First lieutenant (Lettu).


IDF Rank:(קצין מקצועי אקדמאי (קמ"א - Katsín miktsoí akademai (Kama) - Professional Academic Officer
IDF Rank:(קצין מקצועי אקדמאי (קמ"א - Katsín miktsoí akademai (Kama) - Professional Academic Officer

In the Israel Defense Forces, the rank above second lieutenant is simply lieutenant. The rank of (קצין מקצועי אקדמאי (קמ"א (katsín miktsoí akademai or "kama"), a professional academic officer (that is, a medical, dental or veterinary officer, a justice officer or a religious officer), is equivalent to a professional officer of the second class in the reserve and equivalent to first lieutenant.

Other countries

For other countries, the equivalent rank to a US Army first lieutenant (O-2) is listed below.

  • Afghanistan: Lomri baridman
  • Albania: Toger
  • Angola: Primeiro tenente
  • Arabic-speaking countries except former French colonies in North Africa: Mulazim awwal
  • Argentina: Teniente primero (army); primer teniente (air force)
  • Australia: Army lieutenant (pronounced left-enant); Royal Australian Navy sub-lieutenant (pronounced "loo-tenant")
  • Austria: Oberleutnant
  • Azerbaijan: Baş leytenant
  • Belarus: Старший лейтенант (Russian), старшы лейтэнант (starshy leytenant) (Belarusian)
  • Belgium: Lieutenant (French); luitenant (Dutch)
  • Bhutan: Deda gom
  • Bosnia and Herzegovina: Poručnik
  • Bolivia: Subteniente
  • Brazil: Primeiro tenente
  • Bulgaria: Cтарши лейтенант (starshiy leytenant)
  • Cambodia: Ak-no-say-ney-tor
  • Canada: Lieutenant
  • Cape Verde: Primeiro tenente
  • Imperial China (Qing Dynasty): 副軍校 (Fù jūn xiào)
  • People's Republic of China: 中尉 (Zhōngwèi)
  • Republic of China (Taiwan): 中尉(Chungwei)
  • Croatia: Natporučnik
  • Cuba: Primer teniente
  • Chile: Teniente
  • Cyprus: Ypolokhagos (army); yposminagos (air force); anthypoploiarchos (navy)
  • Czech Republic (and former Czechoslovakia): Nadporučík
  • Denmark: Premierløjtnant
  • Dominican Republic: Primer teniente
  • Estonia: Leitnant
  • Ethiopia: መቶ አለቃ (Meto Aleqa)
  • Finland: Yliluutnantti
  • France and all other French-speaking countries: Lieutenant (air force/army), enseigne de vaisseau de première classe (navy)
  • Georgia: უფროსი ლეიტენანტი (Up’rosi leytenanti)
  • Germany: Oberleutnant
  • Greece: Ypolokhagos (army); yposminagos (air force); anthypoploiarchos (navy)
  • Hungary: Főhadnagy
  • Indonesia: Letnan satu
  • Iran: ستوان یكم (Setvan yekom)
  • Republic of Ireland: Lieutenant (English); lefteanant (Irish)
  • Israel: סגן (Segen)
  • Italy: Tenente
  • Imperial Japan: Rikugun-Chūsa 陸軍中佐
  • Japan: Nitō rikui 2等陸尉 (or Nii 2尉) (modern) / Chūi 中尉 (historical)
  • Jordan: ملازم أول (Moulazem awal)
  • Kazakhstan: Старший лейтенант (Russian), аға лейтенант (Kazakh)
  • North Korea and South Korea: 중위 (Jungwi)
  • Laos: Roithõäkäd
  • Latvia: Virsleitnants
  • Lithuania: Vyresnysis leitenantas
  • Luxembourg: Premier lieutenant
  • Malaysia: Leftenan
  • Mexico: Teniente primero
  • Nepal: Upa-senani
  • Republic of Macedonia: Поручник (poručnik)
  • Mongolia: Ахлах дэслэгч (Ahlah deslegch)
  • Morocco: "Lkowad"
  • Mozambique: Tenente
  • Netherlands: Eerste luitenant
  • Nicaragua: Teniente primero
  • Norway: Løytnant
  • Pakistan: Lieutenant (army)
  • Paraguay: Teniente primero
  • Philippines: First lieutenant (English); pulimagat (Tagalog); primero teniente (Philippine Spanish)
  • Poland: Porucznik
  • Portugal: Tenente
  • Romania: Locotenent (current); locotenent-major (Warsaw Pact)
  • Russia: Russian: Старший лейтенант (Starshy leytenant)
  • Serbia: Поручник (poručnik)
  • Singapore: Lieutenant
  • Slovakia: Slovak: Nadporučík
  • Slovenia: Nadporočnik
  • Somalia: Dagaal
  • Spain and all other Spanish-speaking countries except Argentina, Cuba, the Dominican Republic, Nicaragua, Paraguay and Uruguay: Teniente
  • Suriname: Luitenant
  • Sweden: Löjtnant
  • Switzerland: German: Oberleutnant; French: premier-lieutenant; Italian: primotenente
  • Thailand: Roi tho
  • Tunisia: ملازم أول (moulazem awal)
  • Turkey: Üsteğmen
  • Ukraine: Ukrainian: Cтарший лейтенант, romanizedstarshyy leytenant
  • Uruguay: Teniente primero
  • Uzbekistan: Katta leytenant
  • Vietnam: Thượng úy
  • Venezuela: Primer teniente
  • Yugoslavia: Поручник (poručnik)


  1. ^ Partridge, p 612, p 621, p 884
  2. ^ Marine Corps Uniform Regulations, p 4-21
  3. ^ Hayes, David. "Ranks & Duties". Historic Naval Fiction. Retrieved 22 April 2018.
  4. ^ Barnebey, Matthew; "1st Lieutenant Division plays significant role in supporting base", Jax Air News
  5. ^ Cipra, Dave; "A History of Sea Service Ranks & Titles", Commandant's Bulletin, (May, June, July 1985), U.S. Coast Guard Historian's Office.
References used
  • Marine Corps Uniform Regulations, Marine Corps Order P1020.34G with changes 1-5, Chapter 4. Insignia and Regulations for Wear, Sec. 4005. Insignia of Grade, Officers, Para. 2. Description by Grade, h. Captain, i. First Lieutenant, j. Second Lieutenant (p. 4-25) and Figure 4-11. Officers' Grade Insignia (Shoulder/Collar). Washington, DC: United States Marine Corps.
  • Barnebey, Matthew (29 June 2011). "1st Lieutenant Division plays significant role in supporting base". Jax Air News. website. Retrieved 6 May 2014.
  • Cipra, Dave (May 1985). "A History of Sea Service Ranks & Titles" (PDF). Commandant's Bulletin. U.S. Coast Guard Historian's Office. Retrieved 6 May 2014.
  • Partridge, Eric (1984). A Dictionary of Slang and Unconventional English (8th ed.). London and New York: Routledge. ISBN 978-0025949805.
This page was last edited on 24 May 2019, at 17:42
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