Also: Para-Legal Brigades, Medical Brigades, Politicial Brigades
Social Service Brigades were created to address humanitarian crises, natural disasters, and peacekeeping operations inside war zones. Prior to the creation of these brigades, standing military forces were assigned to these roles in an ad hoc nature. Whichever unit was closest, and not engaged, was traditionally assigned to the task. This could be problematic because a mech company or a special forces battalion do not have the same personnel capabilities, and few if any are trained for peacekeeping operations. Likewise, a high-value unit tied down in peacekeeping tends to become stuck in place or draws the attention of enemy forces.
1. Maintain military organization and presence in a location without expending specialized units, or units ill-equipped for the task at hand.
2. Present a humanitarian face and good PR for said military by having military personnel trained in human relations, crisis management, peacekeeping, and disaster relief operations.
3. Operate as support occupation forces in times of armed action.
4. Maintain plausible deniability by having said units 'infiltrated' as need be by intelligence and special forces assets to ensure the success of missions
Social Service Brigades are a branch of the National Guard level military, and are graded and ranked as National Guard units, and also typically named as such. Officers inside these units are typically good face political appointees and are best exemplified by officers being non-combat rated, and usually some sort of social, political, familial, or corporate placement. This allows for certain people to gain credentials as a military veterans without doing anything more dangerous than policing refugees, preventing looting during a natural disaster, and generally looking good and getting medals.
The average Social Service Brigade member is a national guard recruit who has more of an aptitude for social media, social relations, and social awareness while also being modestly capable of holding a weapon without shooting themselves or someone else by accident.
If pressed into combat, most social service brigades would be represented as Crowd Control/light pistol companies, with perhaps one rifle company for every four regular companies.
A tenth of each battalion would be considered motorized, and the rest is moved via large air transport or similar special equipment. The most common method of deployment is via light cruiser or escort ship.
If truly pressed into combat, most social service battalions are subpar foot infantry and would either be forced to defensive urban fighting or would be wiped out in short order.
Mecha assets: ultra-minimal, if a SocServ battalion has mecha they are light, slow, and very specialized.
Aerospace assets: none. If they require air support, they have to call for it.
Armored Vehicles: minimal, each battalion probably has enough vehicle to field a 2/3rds of a company of motorized infantry with a few light tanks and such.
Power Armor: modest, one in ten squads has a chance of being equipped with basic light power armor
Naval: Typically a single light cruiser attached to an organized regiment, or 3-5 battalions.
One Light Cruiser
The SocServ Brigades (soft serve) are used as force escalators. When there is an issue, a SocServ unit can be deployed and they are not offensive in nature. Attacking one of these units is sure to trigger a call for assistance, and then dedicated units are brought to bear.
In a superficial role, SocServ battalions do exactly what they claim to do, help in international and humanitarian crises.
In truth and action, such units are mostly cover for a small number of spies, saboteurs, assassins, cyberwar professionals, and elite supersoldiers.
Listening to the news, Russia invading Ukraine, and that the US military was placing the 82nd Airborne Division maybe in Poland to assist in handling Ukrainian refugees. This seemed disingenuous to me, what sort of humanitarian aid does an airborne assault force based around jumping out of helicopters offer? It seems so much more like moving a big piece close to the action, and its not even being casual about it.
With Social Service Brigades, a large number of them can be placed in 'relief' areas and function as sovereign military forces, so that even an errant or stray attack against them is a potential act of war, while they can hold the flag of peace and aid while carrying out undisclosed ops against whomever.
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