Tactical Officer

Lieutenant Neeraj Anahira is a Tactical Officer and a member of the Tactical Branch. Until a vessel is available to serve in deep space, members of the tactical branch are undertaking strategic and tactical analysis of known and projected threats and devising response protocols.

Role

As senior Tactical Officer aboard, Lieutenant Anahira would be responsible for the management of all tactical crew and systems aboard the vessel. During assigned watches he would co-ordinate the vessel’s tactical operations and serve as ‘point officer’ during combat situations, ensuring that the Captain has current information on the vessel’s Tactical Operating Environment (TOE) and available strategic options. If the Captain chooses to act on those options, Anahira would need to ensure execution of any orders to fire weapons, defend the ship or deploy electronic warfare techniques.

In anticipation of this role, Anahira and his team is working with analysts to test their tactical forecasts and possible responses in simulations. This involves simulating a wide variety of vessel systems designed to protect the crew from such threats, including its primary weapons system - guided torpedoes - and a range of defensive countermeasure systems.

One of Anahira’s key interests is the vessel’s planned weapons direction system, which use a combination of vessel and weapon-mounted sensors to guide a torpedo to its intended target. This work sees him working closely with the weapons engineering team and specialists from the various short-range sensor systems under development.

Career

A veteran of the Indian Navy, Lieutenant Anahira was born in Fiji to Indian parents before returning to his parents’ home country as a child. On joining that country’s navy, Anahira’s apparent gift for devising firing solutions against submarines – initially from surface vessels but eventually also from other submarines – quickly became apparent.

Anahira’s unique skills saw him rise quickly through the ranks. He has served on several peacekeeping missions in Indonesia at his own request. On anti-piracy missions off the Somali coast his skills were particularly valuable, identifying, tracking and eliminating multiple small-vessel ‘suicide’ threats aimed by desperate pirates against the warships of participating nations. Anahira was the first to devise consistently effective detection and elimination protocols for such threats otherwise extremely difficult for warships to counter.

It was on these assignments that Lieutenant Anahira’s sharp tactical eye and ability to anticipate threats from multiple vectors caught the attention of ISDC operatives. As India’s government does not officially acknowledge the mission’s existence, Anahira is classified as being an exchange with the Australian Armed Forces.

Becoming a Tactical Officer

Interested in Lieutenant Anahira’s role as a tactical officer? To take on a similar role yourself, you’ll need to sign up as an officer. If accepted, you’ll become an officer cadet and like all members of the ISDC contemplating active service you’ll need to undertake common training.

An officer interested in working in tactical will follow a line officer’s career track, which will offer training across a broad range of ship systems including operations, navigation, and science as well as tactical. This will cover all the vessel’s tactical systems including EMDAR, torpedoes, countermeasures and electronic warfare.

Line officers also study combat strategy and tactics, with the opportunity to apply what they’re learnt during extensive tactical simulations in different roles as a tactical officer, operations officer and a commanding officer.

As their training advances, junior line officers will seek to become watch qualified. This requires them to choose an area of interest – such as tactical – and complete a series of supervised watches and other practical requirements specific to that department. Once qualified, officers may be assigned to the ship as a tactical officer where they’ll serve as a bridge Watch Officer, managing tactical teams, hunting enemy vessels and fighting the ship.

The line officer career track doesn’t end there. Even the best tactical officers are encouraged to become watch qualified across a range of other departments including operations, navigation and science, especially if they’re interested in command.