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Army - Streamers-1 (U.S.)

Last modified: 2018-12-27 by rick wyatt
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Campaign or war service credits are awarded to units based on their participation in specific wars, campaigns or battles. The award takes the form of a streamer in the colors of the applicable campaign medal with an appropriate inscription for a campaign credit or without inscription for a war service credit. The latter credit is given for units which served in a designated theater of war but did not qualify for a campaign. Examples would be the WW II Asiatic-Pacific streamer with inscription LUZON (denoting participation in a 1944-45 Philippines campaign) or the same streamer without inscription (for a unit which remained in Hawaii throughout the war).

Unit decorations are awarded for gallantry or meritorious service, and their streamers bear the inscription of the action for which the unit was cited or (usually when an award is made for meritorious service rather than for gallantry) the theater or geographical area in which the unit served. Dates are added as necessary to distinguish among different awards of the same decoration. Examples would be the Presidential Unit Citation streamer with inscription NORMANDY (WW II era) or the Meritorious Unit Citation streamer with inscription VIETNAM 1968. The same practice is followed for foreign unit decorations, e.g. the French *Croix d'Guerre*.

Two other U.S. Army streamers which might be included as battle honors are the Combat Infantry Streamer and the Combat Medical Streamer. They are awarded to units when a specified percentage of their personnel have qualified for the Combat Infantry Badge and the Combat Medical Badge respectively.

U.S. Army streamers are carried on the staff of the organizational flag or color, attached by a metal clip just below the spearpoint finial.
Tom Gregg, 4 October 1998

The Earned Honor Device is used when a battalion/squadron of a regiment, rather than the regiment as a whole, qualifies for the streamer. Organizational colors of battalions/squadrons of regiments display all regimental streamers, with the ones specifically earned by the battalion distinguished by the EHD wreath. The color of the regiment (and the Army Flag) displays streamers with no EHD's.

EHD's are common on streamers, since the regiment is not a tactical formation. Therefore, not all battalions/squadrons of a regiment may qualify for a particular streamer. EHD's are not used for battalion streamers of "single-branch" regiments like the Quartermaster Corps, however. Their use is pretty much restricted to the combat arms.
Tom Gregg and Joe McMillan, 1 December 1999

One of the interesting new additions to the 1998 AR 840-10 is a table listing all 173 campaign streamers authorized for the Army Flag along with their full inscriptions. The Campaign streamers for "The" Army Flag differ from those used with other Army flags and colors in two respects: they're longer and the inscriptions include dates, e.g. FORT SUMTER 1861. Dates are not inscribed on campaign streamers for other organizational flags and colors. (They are used on unit decorations streamers when necessary to distinguish between two awards of the same unit decoration, e.g. VIETNAM 1967 and VIETNAM 1969 on streamers of the Meritorious Unit Commendation.)
Tom Gregg, 9 September 1999

[Army Streamer - ] image by Tom Gregg, 29 November 1999

[Army Streamer - ] image by Tom Gregg, 29 November 1999

[Army Streamer - ] image by Tom Gregg, 29 November 1999

The US Army flag has 188 streamers authorized, as of 5 November 2014.
A Defense Logistics Agency instruction issued on that date adds this new streamer: Armed Forces Expeditionary: SOMALIA 1992-1995
In terms of more recent conflicts, for those keeping track, there are 4 streamers for Afghanistan, 7 for Iraq, and 1 for the Global War on Terrorism.
Dave Fowler, 5 December 2014