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The military consists of three regiments: the Scout Regiment, originally tasked with venturing into Titan territory but now serves as the military's main expeditionary force; the Garrison Regiment, which patrols and maintains the Walls, keeping Titans out and acting as the first to engage the Titans if the gate is destroyed; and the Military Police Regiment, the top-ranking soldiers who serve as the personal guards for the king and maintain order within the Walls. Additionally, the military supports the Cadet Corps, the branch which oversees the training and education of recruits in order to join one of the aforementioned forces.
Ranked among the most elite soldiers, they are tasked with attempting to reclaim territory that has been lost to the Titans. Despite being the most well-trained, they often come under dispute from those within the Walls and are constantly under threat of being disbanded since they suffer high losses, and usually fail to supply results. The current commander is Hange Zoë.
The symbol of the Scout Regiment is a pair of wings, known as "the wings of freedom".
The Military Police are in charge of keeping order inside the Walls and protecting the King. Due to their important function as guardians of the most important humans, only the top 10 cadets from a graduating class are permitted to join them. Despite recruiting from only the best, they are shown to be corrupt and often incompetent due to the nature of their work inside the Walls, far away from Titans. Their current commander is Nile Dawk.
The symbol of the Military Police is a unicorn.
The Garrison is responsible for patrolling, maintaining, and protecting the Walls. They are set the task of evacuating citizens and dispatching Titans in the case of an emergency breach in the Walls. Falling intermediately between the Scouts and Military Police, the soldiers in the Garrison are second to the former in Titan combat and are less corrupt than the latter. Garrison soldiers assigned to the southern part of the walls are seen as the most experienced, since Titans have been noted to primarily come from the south. The highest ranking officer of the southern territories is Dot Pyxis.
The symbol of the Garrison Regiment is a pair of roses.
The Cadet Corps oversees the education and training of recruits. They assess the qualifications and eligibility of the cadets over the course of the training regime. Upon graduation, the cadets choose either of the three main branches to join and formally begin their careers in the military. A commandant of the Cadet Corps (particularly of the 104th Cadet Corps) is Keith Sadies.
The symbol of the Cadet Corps is a pair of crossed swords.
Following the Scout Regiment's investigation of the origins of the Titans is revealed to the public, the military changes their focus to defending Paradis Island from aggression from Marley and other nations.
In the year 854, Eren Jaeger coerced the military into deploying the Scout Regiment to the Marleyan city of Liberio, using the potential death of himself--as the current holder of the irreplaceable Founding Titan and Attack Titan--as a threat. Eren, with the aid of the Scout Regiment, launched a risky, full-scale assault on the city. The move was mostly successful, resulting in the death of Willy Tybur, the top leadership of the Marleyan military, and high-ranking foreign politicians and military officers, who sided with Marley in its campaign to erase Eldia; it also lead to the successful retrieval of Zeke Jaeger and the War Hammer Titan.
Following the assault, the military ordered the detention of Eren Jaeger for insubordination and coercion. After his incarceration became public, a considerable amount of Eldian citizens and soldiers pressed for his release; as a majority of the nation began hailing Eren as a hero and savior, and the only one capable of defeating Marley and its allies. The call fell on deaf ears and ultimately caused the formation of the Jaegerists, an extremist group subservient to Eren Jaeger. To further their cause, the Jaegerists plotted and carried out the assassination of Premier Dhalis Zachary, the military's commander-in-chief; and successfully facilitated the release of Eren Jaeger shortly thereafter. With the armed forces now being leaderless, Commander Dot Pyxis de facto assumed supreme command with the support of the senior military leadership.
Using the information of traitors, the Jaegerists proceeded to apprehend Scout Regiment Commander Hange Zoë and to severely injure Commandant Keith Sadies of the Cadet Corps. After it was revealed that the luxurious wine served to the military's highest-ranking officers was infected with Zeke Jaeger's Titan-turning, spinal fluid, Dot Pyxis was forced to surrender control over the military to the Jaegerists.
Though the army is full time and has protected the Walls for over 100 years, it is largely corrupt. The Military Police are thought to be the worst, as they actively avoid fighting the Titans, preferably staying alive in the interior. They are also responsible for the lack of technological advancement and various other issues inside the Walls. Under them is the Garrison, thought to be lazy, irresponsible, and cowardly, though, after the breach in the Shiganshina District, their tactics and personnel have achieved amazing improvements. The Scout Regiment are the least corrupt of the three, fighting only for the sake of humanity and reclaiming the land lost to the Titans.
Uniform and equipment
By 850, members of the military wore similar combat uniforms consisting of a short, light brown jacket with the badge of the division on both shoulders, on the front left pocket and on the center of the back, a light-colored shirt, a dark brown sash around the waist covering the hips, white pants, and dark brown knee-high leather boots.
The Scout Regiment members often wear a heavy, green, hip-length hooded cloak with the Wings of Freedom on the back, usually when conducting missions outside of human territory. Though all the regiments have been seen wearing the capes with their designated regiment insignia on the back. Cadets have been observed to wear the cloaks, albeit without any symbols when conducting marches in the rain. All branches also have the same dress uniform, which is an olive-green trench coat, featuring the badge of the regiment in the same positions as the combat uniform. Troops directly under command of the premier have blank badges on their uniforms rather than having a badge of any certain division.
The main equipment of the military is the omni-directional mobility gear, which is also their main weapon used in conjunction with two snap-off blades attached to the hand grips. However, the Military Police often use muskets, since they mostly deal with people and rarely with Titans.
By 854, members of the Scout Regiment wore upgraded uniforms consisting of a sleek black undersuit and a metal breastplate, with straps around the arms, legs and waist. Multiple variants of the uniform existed: Sasha Braus's uniform duirng the attack on Liberio featured a bandolier and lacked the metal breastplate; Levi Ackermann wore the new sleek undersuit while opting to keep the classic green hooded cloak.
In addition to their upgraded anti-Titan omni-directional mobility gear, the Scout Regiment began utilising upgraded anti-Personnel omni-directional mobility gear. In terms of firearms, Scout Regiment personnel had access to semi-automatic pistols and bolt-action rifles. Furthermore, the Thunder Spear had become standard issue in addition to a soldier's compliment of swords. Typically, Scouts carried two Thunder Spears, however, they had developed platforms capable of carrying more.
- According to Isayama, a trend within the Walls is to badmouth the various military units.
- Although cadets are given the choice to join one branch of the military, they are able to leave their selected branch to join a different one. This is seen when Floch Forster, Marlo Freudenberg, Samuel Jackson, and Daz left their original branches (the Garrison Regiment and Military Police, respectively) and joined the Scout Regiment.