Multiple realities
(covers information from several alternate timelines)

The rank system used by the United Earth MACO military force of 22nd century, and the Terran Empire in the mirror universe, were based on traditional army and naval ranks from Earth's past. In this case, the precedent for MACO ranks was most likely the Marine Corps, since Starfleet itself is based on a naval motif.


The flag officer rank of general was used by General Casey, commanding officer of the MACOs who were assigned to the Enterprise NX-01. This rank was approximately equivalent to an Starfleet admiral. (ENT: "The Expanse")

It was not revealed if the MACO infrastructure used any separate grades of general rank, and no general's rank insignia was ever made for the series. Based on the rank insignia that was shown, a "general" would be one, two, three, or four stars.
The insignia for general was on display in a diagram of MACO rank and insignia, in the Star Trek Encyclopedia (4th ed., vol. 2, p. 9). There were four stars. Furthermore, the diagram had insignias for brigadier general, major general, and lieutenant general.


MACO major patch

The rank of major was used by MACO field officers commanding a squad of soldiers on special assignments. The insignia was a gold oak leaf on a yellow shoulder patch. The oak leaf insignia appears to have been carried over from the US insignia for major.

Major J. Hayes commanded the MACOs aboard Enterprise. Traditionally, a major was equivalent of a naval lieutenant commander. However, Starfleet had no such rank at the time. Though Hayes may have technically outranked Lieutenant Malcolm Reed, the MACO team was still subordinate to the ship's chief of security. (ENT: "The Xindi")

In the mirror universe, Major Malcolm Reed was the chief of security aboard the ISS Enterprise. (ENT: "In a Mirror, Darkly")

From the fact that Hayes named a corporal as his successor in "Countdown", it could be assumed that he was the only MACO officer aboard Enterprise.
A variant of the major insignia was on display in a diagram of MACO rank and insignia in the Encyclopedia (4th ed., vol. 2, p. 9). This variant had the six-leaf cluster being of an uniform color, yellow.


MACO sergeant patch

The sergeant insignia consisted of three white chevrons on a blue shoulder patch.

Several sergeant rank patches were sold as part of the It's A Wrap! sale and auction. [1][2]


MACO corporal patch

The corporal insignia consisted of two white chevrons on a blue shoulder patch.

Several corporals were seen assigned to Enterprise, and also posted at other Starfleet assignments.


MACO private patch

The private insignia consisted of a single white chevron on a blue shoulder patch.

While the insignia was plainly seen, the term "private" was not used in any dialogue, the troopers in question were simply referred to as "MACOs."


Background information

The MACOs appear to have followed the same basic rank system of Earth armies, with American-style insignia. The producers and writers of Star Trek: Enterprise apparently avoided the army ranks that sounded naval (lieutenant, captain, etc.) to avoid confusion.

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