Is "Sierra 117" redundant?

Hey everyone!
Something that has been on my mind for some time is how the Spartans use the designation “Sierra” (e.g., Chief being Sierra 117). Now, they are called “Sierra” due to that being the NATO Phonetic Alphabet version of S (and so, for example, Chief is actually designated S117). However, they are referred to as S<insert number here> as a shortened version of “Spartan”. So they are referred to as “Sierra” as a verbalized version of “S”, which in turn is a condensed version of “Spartan”. Now, the purpose of the NATO Phonetic Alphabet is to replace letters with full words, so that there is no misunderstanding. However, the “S” already refers to the word “Spartan”, so why not simply refer to them as “Spartan <insert number here>” (e.g., Spartan 117), as opposed to using an entirely different word to refer to a letter that is referring to a different word? It just makes my brain think that even using the word “Sierra” becomes redundant (but sounds cool though).

However, on the other hand, maybe their actual official designations ARE simply S117, S259, etc. The letter “S” is chosen in reference to the program that they hail from (The Spartan Program), but their ACTUAL designations only use the letter, and so “Spartan 117” would not be a technically correct designation in this circumstance. In which case, referring to them as “Sierra 117” (and so forth) WOULD be correct, as the S is not standing in for anything else, it simply is.

Super sorry if I presented my thoughts in a confusing manner, TBH I think I confused myself whilst writing this, and would love to hear the feedback of you guys.
Thanks :slight_smile:

EDIT:
Also, if anyone with extensive real world military knowledge applicable to this situation would be able to provide their insight, that would also be greatly appreciated :slight_smile:

I believe the latter is correct. The Spartan 2s were designated “S###”, and the Spartan 3s that we know the designations of were “A###”, “B###” or “G###” depending on which class they were from.

Siarra 117 tells you that John is from the Spartan 2 class, designated 117.
Alpha 219 tells you that Carter is from Alpha Company, the first class of Spartan 3s, designated 219.
Bravo 091 tells you that Lucy is from Bravo Company, the second class of Spartan 3s, designated 091.
etc.

> 2533274883501878;2:
> I believe the latter is correct. The Spartan 2s were designated “S###”, and the Spartan 3s that we know the designations of were “A###”, “B###” or “G###” depending on which class they were from.
>
> Siarra 117 tells you that John is from the Spartan 2 class, designated 117.
> Alpha 219 tells you that Carter is from Alpha Company, the first class of Spartan 3s, designated 219.
> Bravo 091 tells you that Lucy is from Bravo Company, the second class of Spartan 3s, designated 091.
> etc.

OPSEC: OPerational SECurity. There can be multiple units on the field designated as “Sierra 117”, even though only the UNSC, ONI and more specifically only those involved or in command of a Spartan operation, or an operation where a Spartan has now become a part of, know that “Sierra” is usually only designated to Spartans. Insurrection forces may not be privy to this, neither would the Covenant, so now you have what is called “plausible deniability”; is it a unit, or an individual? It does not give any information regarding what “Sierra” is, and why it is “117”. __+We see this in real life with the SEAL Teams. Originally there were like, two or three teams, but were called like Team 1, Team 5 and Team 12 so the Russians would think we had more SEALs than we actually did at the time. During a mission though, so that our real life troops have plausible deniability that a SpecOps unit was in the area, they will be given a special call-sign. Even saying “Team 3” gives plausible deniability as to which members are actually deployed on a mission since “there are around” “80” members to a Team.+ __“Sierra” in any context within the lore, refers to Spartans. This likely changed with the Spartan Four program. I have yet to see any Spartan Four with a numerical designation. The numbers were also used as an official replacement of their Last Names, having any record of their original last names removed from the record. Kurt’s real last name for example is not “Ambrose”, rather his number, but he was given a last name, for a reason I don’t remember all to well. “Sierra” can still be used to mark targets, or rally points. You could likely have a rendezvous point, or some target designated Sierra 117, but that designation will always follow what it is denoting, i.e “Rendezvous point Sierra 117”, or “Grid Sierra 117”, or “Building Sierra 117”, you get the idea. We actually hear and example of this in the mission “The Pillar of Autumn” where Cortana refers to either decks, or airlocks, or I think launch bays “Alpha to Sierra”, even though Chiefs designation would have still been “Sierra 117”.

Spartan III’s are still gonna be designated “Sierra” to denote that they are in fact Spartans. The “Alpha” or “Bravo” designation is only to denote their Spartan Three class, or generation since they were “mass produced” and had over 300 active, and more importantly, disposable Spartans. Just as there is Spartan Alpha 091, there is also a Spartan Bravo 091. That alphabetical prefix becomes even more important when you have multiple Spartan III soldiers from different generations who may eventually deployed on the same battlefield at the same time. Since the actual names of soldiers are not used over open comms(open meaning that anyone can hear, rather than their “proximity radio”) during missions, soldiers are assigned call-signs, and Spartans are always designated “Sierra”**. So you would never hear over the radio “John 117”, but instead “Sierra 117” to denote who he is, and specifically, as a Spartan. Same with Carter. Over the radio you will hear “Sierra A/Alpha219”. Throughout the games, and books, we only ever see them referred to as their rank, or number. Only in narration do we see their names, or in conversation among one another.

Spartan II’s did not suffer from this numerical designation issue since there were only less than 100 active combat ready Spartan II’s at any given time, from either class, of which there were only ever two. The numbers were designated at the time of genetic selection by Halsey. Considering how small their numbers were, and how tight nit Spartan II’s are with their class mates, they would know the difference between the original 117, and the 117 from class two. But considering their low numbers, and the fact that the second class members were conscripted, and began shortly after the original Spartan II’s completed their training, I doubt numbers were ever recycled considering Halsey was in charge of selecting the candidates.

**the exception being Spartan Fours. They are designated as Spartan Fireteam’s and Fireteam members. The team members have their respective numerical designations: “Spartan Fireteam, Majestic: Member 3”. That would be condensed to “Fireteam Majestic, Member 3”, or further down to “Sierra Majestic 3”, or just “Majestic 3”(numbers could be replaced by alphabet). We have not heard that in the game, so I am making an educated guess based on the above. Actually, we do hear the Fireteam being called out, but not the individual members unless by the members themselves. We always hear “Fireteam Osiris”(or just “Osiris”) for example, or “Blue Team”(I know they are not Fours, just illustrating the point), but never “Blue 2”, or “Osiris 3”. Likely because since they are a cohesive unit, the unit as a whole is called out, rather than an individual, unless that individual needs to break off from what the main group is doing, split into two separate groups (Blue Team 1/Alpha, and Blue Team 2/Bravo), or a member is either MIA, or AWOL.

> 2533274792608735;3:
> > 2533274883501878;2:
> > I believe the latter is correct. The Spartan 2s were designated “S###”, and the Spartan 3s that we know the designations of were “A###”, “B###” or “G###” depending on which class they were from.
> >
> > Siarra 117 tells you that John is from the Spartan 2 class, designated 117.
> > Alpha 219 tells you that Carter is from Alpha Company, the first class of Spartan 3s, designated 219.
> > Bravo 091 tells you that Lucy is from Bravo Company, the second class of Spartan 3s, designated 091.
> > etc.
>
> OPSEC: OPerational SECurity. There can be multiple units on the field designated as “Sierra 117”, even though only the UNSC, ONI and more specifically only those involved or in command of a Spartan operation, or an operation where a Spartan has now become a part of, know that “Sierra” is usually only designated to Spartans. Insurrection forces may not be privy to this, neither would the Covenant, so now you have what is called “plausible deniability”; is it a unit, or an individual? It does not give any information regarding what “Sierra” is, and why it is “117”. __+We see this in real life with the SEAL Teams. Originally there were like, two or three teams, but were called like Team 1, Team 5 and Team 12 so the Russians would think we had more SEALs than we actually did at the time. During a mission though, so that our real life troops have plausible deniability that a SpecOps unit was in the area, they will be given a special call-sign. Even saying “Team 3” gives plausible deniability as to which members are actually deployed on a mission since “there are around” “80” members to a Team.+ __“Sierra” in any context within the lore, refers to Spartans. This likely changed with the Spartan Four program. I have yet to see any Spartan Four with a numerical designation. The numbers were also used as an official replacement of their Last Names, having any record of their original last names removed from the record. Kurt’s real last name for example is not “Ambrose”, rather his number, but he was given a last name, for a reason I don’t remember all to well. “Sierra” can still be used to mark targets, or rally points. You could likely have a rendezvous point, or some target designated Sierra 117, but that designation will always follow what it is denoting, i.e “Rendezvous point Sierra 117”, or “Grid Sierra 117”, or “Building Sierra 117”, you get the idea. We actually hear and example of this in the mission “The Pillar of Autumn” where Cortana refers to either decks, or airlocks, or I think launch bays “Alpha to Sierra”, even though Chiefs designation would have still been “Sierra 117”.
>
> Spartan III’s are still gonna be designated “Sierra” to denote that they are in fact Spartans. The “Alpha” or “Bravo” designation is only to denote their Spartan Three class, or generation since they were “mass produced” and had over 300 active, and more importantly, disposable Spartans. Just as there is Spartan Alpha 091, there is also a Spartan Bravo 091. That alphabetical prefix becomes even more important when you have multiple Spartan III soldiers from different generations who may eventually deployed on the same battlefield at the same time. Since the actual names of soldiers are not used over open comms(open meaning that anyone can hear, rather than their “proximity radio”) during missions, soldiers are assigned call-signs, and Spartans are always designated “Sierra”**. So you would never hear over the radio “John 117”, but instead “Sierra 117” to denote who he is, and specifically, as a Spartan. Same with Carter. Over the radio you will hear “Sierra A/Alpha219”. Throughout the games, and books, we only ever see them referred to as their rank, or number. Only in narration do we see their names, or in conversation among one another.
>
> Spartan II’s did not suffer from this numerical designation issue since there were only less than 100 active combat ready Spartan II’s at any given time, from either class, of which there were only ever two. The numbers were designated at the time of genetic selection by Halsey. Considering how small their numbers were, and how tight nit Spartan II’s are with their class mates, they would know the difference between the original 117, and the 117 from class two. But considering their low numbers, and the fact that the second class members were conscripted, and began shortly after the original Spartan II’s completed their training, I doubt numbers were ever recycled considering Halsey was in charge of selecting the candidates.
>
> **the exception being Spartan Fours. They are designated as Spartan Fireteam’s and Fireteam members. The team members have their respective numerical designations: “Spartan Fireteam, Majestic: Member 3”. That would be condensed to “Fireteam Majestic, Member 3”, or further down to “Sierra Majestic 3”, or just “Majestic 3”(numbers could be replaced by alphabet). We have not heard that in the game, so I am making an educated guess based on the above. Actually, we do hear the Fireteam being called out, but not the individual members unless by the members themselves. We always hear “Fireteam Osiris”(or just “Osiris”) for example, or “Blue Team”(I know they are not Fours, just illustrating the point), but never “Blue 2”, or “Osiris 3”. Likely because since they are a cohesive unit, the unit as a whole is called out, rather than an individual, unless that individual needs to break off from what the main group is doing, split into two separate groups (Blue Team 1/Alpha, and Blue Team 2/Bravo), or a member is either MIA, or AWOL.

This is the best explanation of this I have seen in some time, particularly with regard to the protocols for S-IVs. I think Halo Wars even properly uses “Actual” to denote Capt. Cutter. Example: “Forge to ‘Spirit of Fire Actual’”… ‘Spirit of Fire’ Being the unit/ship designation on comms, with ‘Actual’ denoting the Captain/Senior Officer or NCO.

Finally some recognition for my efforts. :'D