Difference Between Army vs Marines

Difference Between Army vs Marines

Today is all about getting to the bottom of the army vs marines debate so that we can finally help you lay to rest any confusion you might have about what the two different terms mean and how these military outfits vary from one another.

We will provide you with a detailed rundown of the definition of each word in conjunction with a wider explanation of the various different roles that each of these respective groups perform so that you can walk away today knowing precisely what their functions are.

Definition of Army

The army is an organised military fighting force based mainly around land operations. The army is predominantly land oriented, and the majority of their logistics and strategies rely primarily on land-based operation only. They are an armed fighting force intended to defend the nation or country from which they originate.

Although the marines too feature land-based fighting personnel, who actually form the largest portion of their overall staff, it is the nature in which each respective force operates that differs. The army’s purpose is broader and more general in nature, while the marines are intended to fulfil multiple specialist roles.

The marines can make use of land-based fighting staff and perform regular ground-based operations, but this is simply one aspect of their functionality. On balance, the army is primarily intended for use in these types of operations almost exclusively.

It is worth noting too that the army is typically mainly a defence and security force whereas the marines are often used offensively. It is true that the difference between army and marines can become blurred due to their interchangeability, but it is their initial intended purposes that vary.

Definition of Marines

The marines are a special forces unit that is trained to perform both land- and sea-based operations. Although the above description is true, it is a very limited overview of the actual roles performed by the marines, who are a special forces unit designed to be able to perform a wide array of specialized roles.

These roles can be offensive or defensive in nature and often involve more intricate strategy and logistical involvement than the slightly more “basic” roles performed by standard army personnel, who operate almost entirely on land.

The difference between marines and army really comes down to one (the marines) being able to perform the same function as the other (the army) while also being capable of performing a wider array of more complex tasks in a variety of landscapes as opposed to just one.

You will typically see the marines being used for offensive operations involving smaller numbers of troops as part of a mission featuring land- and sea-based elements. Alternatively, the army is often deployed en masse as a means of protecting certain areas almost exclusively on land only.

While the marines can be used in almost exactly the same way as the army, they are typically reserved for more sensitive, complex, and critical operations. The army in contrast is used to perform more basic defensive and security functions.

Main Differences Between Army vs Marines

Here are the key differences between marine vs army so that you have a quick reference table to come back to any time you find yourself asking questions about this subject in the future.

Basis of ComparisonArmyMarines
Typical usesLand-based offensive and defensive securitySpecialised missions taking place on land or at sea
Number of members1,100,000 (US Army)220,000 (US Marine Corps)
DepartmentUS ArmyUS Department of the Navy
Length of basic training12 weeks only12 weeks followed by additional specialist training
Typically associated namesArmyMarine Corps (US), Royal Marines (UK)

Difference Between Marines and Army: Conclusion

Now that you have read through to the end of today’s post, we hope that you feel like you have a much firmer understanding of the nature and precise definition of these two similar but different fighting units. Just remember that the army performs basic functions on land and that the marines perform complex functions on land and at sea. This should help you to separate the two effectively.