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post #1 of 34 (permalink) Old 03-18-11, 11:10 AM Thread Starter
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Default Commissars = military police?

Hi all - a fluff question for you...

Are Commissars the military police in the Imperial Guard and the Imperial Navy?

I know they are "political officers" - which in a theocracy like the Imperium means they are also like religious police, but do they also serve a role equivalent to our 20th Century Military Police
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post #2 of 34 (permalink) Old 03-18-11, 11:19 AM
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Somewhat. They mete out jurisdiction over matters of competence and faith, or, rather, the lack of either; usually consisting of a summary execution.

The police, however, is filled by the Arbites on the civilian side, and on the military side, either by Commissar's, or by other Schola Progenium heavies - notably Storm Troopers on naval vessels, although Armsmen (as seperate from chaingangs/press ratings) are known to help NCO's in this matter. I've yet to find a reference to the equivalent of Red caps in 40K, although I could be mistaken.



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post #3 of 34 (permalink) Old 03-18-11, 11:25 AM
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I don't know much about how the MP operate but i would say yes. In the gaunts ghosts novels and the Ciaphus Cain books there are several instances where troopers have gotten out of line and it is the Commisars who are left to deal with punishment. In one of the GG books a civilian murder leads to inquiry and trial all of which is led by the local Commisars. In one of the CC books a troopers is picked up by the local Arbites and held until he can be turned over to Caine for punishment duties.

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post #4 of 34 (permalink) Old 03-18-11, 11:32 AM
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I'd say there isn't a standing legion of MPs in the Guard itself, it seems to be somewhat self-regulatory, NCOs and officers report troopers, who are disciplined by the Commissar. The Commissar him/herself is a political officer, at least in title, not largely a judiciary authority, though that's the most recognizable part of the job. Most political officers are more situated to enforce party values and ensure there isn't any dissent among an army- like the political commissars in the Soviet Red Army.

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post #5 of 34 (permalink) Old 03-18-11, 12:32 PM
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Commissar are Commissar. there not MP.

there base, if i put a guess done, on the fact that the old Sovet unions Red army had Commissars, and they did the whole no retreate, i shoot you as well. Political commissar are associated with the Soviet Union where the Russian Provisional Government of 1917 introduced them to the military forces to ensure the government’s political control. In the event, after the October Revolution, the political commissar remained in the Red Army until 1942.

In the Red Army and the Soviet Army, the political commissar existed only during the 1918–24, 1937–40, and 1941-42 periods; not every Red Army political officer was a commissar. The political commissar held military rank equalling that of the unit commander to whom he was attached; moreover, the commissar also had the military authority to countermand the unit commander’s orders when required. In the Red Army historical periods when political officers were militarily subordinate to unit commanders, the political commissar institution did not exist in the Red Army.

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in eassence Commissar are Commissar there unique.

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post #6 of 34 (permalink) Old 03-18-11, 01:09 PM
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They take on some of the roles of modern MP, following inquires, enforcing laws, ect. On the other hand, they don't manage traffic or do anything with riot or crowd control (unless it's with a single bolt to the head to keep everyone else in line).

In short, no, they're not really military police. They're something unique.


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The police, however, is filled by the Arbites on the civilian side, and on the military side, either by Commissar's, or by other Schola Progenium heavies - notably Storm Troopers on naval vessels, although Armsmen (as seperate from chaingangs/press ratings) are known to help NCO's in this matter. I've yet to find a reference to the equivalent of Red caps in 40K, although I could be mistaken.
Storm Troopers don't police anything. They're elite combat troops used to exploit weaknesses in enemy lines, as a rapid relief force for holes in friendly lines, or used for behind enemy line sorties (deep recon, assassination, ect). I'm not quite sure where you got that they were some sort of police force.

I'm not sure naval armsmen are used for policing either. They're usually used to escort or guard prisoners on the ship or to enact or repulse boarding actions. I think the closest thing I've heard about naval police would be the provosts in the first Cain book.
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post #7 of 34 (permalink) Old 03-18-11, 02:33 PM
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Yes, they do.

What do they do when not repelling boarders? Storm Troopers are on Naval Vessels, and are the one truly reliable resource a Commissar or senior representative of the Imperium's forces has.

There's a relative lot of information about Naval combat in the Gothic War series.



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post #8 of 34 (permalink) Old 03-18-11, 08:39 PM
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Armsmen and Storm Troopers being used to police ships seems reasonable to me- if nothing else because they'd just be sitting on their hands. And if there's one thing I've learned in my life it's that soldiers sitting on their hands is a bad, bad, bad idea.

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post #9 of 34 (permalink) Old 03-18-11, 11:03 PM
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Commissars are political police, they served the same role as real-life commissars did in the Soviet Army 1917-1946. Just as the Soviets, I imagine the Imperial Guard/Navy operate a separate corps of police as the Commissars would be too overwhelmed with work otherwise.
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post #10 of 34 (permalink) Old 03-19-11, 04:09 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vaz View Post
Yes, they do.

What do they do when not repelling boarders? Storm Troopers are on Naval Vessels, and are the one truly reliable resource a Commissar or senior representative of the Imperium's forces has.

There's a relative lot of information about Naval combat in the Gothic War series.
Why on Earth would an Imperial Guard unit have any authority on a naval vessel? There has been a strict distinction between the Imperial Guard and Imperial Navy since the Horus Heresy.

And what else would Storm Troopers do on a naval ship while in transit? Anything else an Imperial Guardsman is supposed to do: pray to the Emperor, maintain his kit, drills, and try to pass the time in any way (drugs, gambling, ect.) they can without the commissars jumping down their neck.

I myself have not read the Gothic War series. I'll probably go out tonight and snag myself a copy of them. In the mean while, please cite where Storm Troopers are the go to men in standard naval circumstances. Nothing out of the ordinary where their unique skills are required (say, assassinating the leader of a shipwide mutiny). Something mundane that MP are expected to do. Manage the loading and off-loading of gear, checking for contraband, operating and guarding the brig, and routine security checks.

Because from everything I've read so far, Storm Troopers are not used for these menial tasks.
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