There are a number of combat jobs available in the US Navy. These include enlisted jobs manning weapons systems like torpedoes and cruise missiles and officer jobs running the crews of men and women manning these systems.
There are also enlisted and officer combat jobs available in the special forces, performing clandestine missions behind or near enemy lines.
Finally, there are officer jobs available in naval aviation, a group of men and women who see a great deal of combat by bombing and strafing strategic targets.
There are a number of combat roles aboard ships. One specialized example is a nuclear operations specialty. These men and women work aboard nuclear-powered ships like submarines and aircraft carriers, manning and maintaining weapons systems.
Shipboard combat positions are also available for officers. These are generally supervisory positions, running teams of weapons support staff to man torpedoes and cruise missiles.
However, the fact is that everyone who works aboard a ship--whether he or she is a missile operator or a data entry clerk--is in a potential combat position, as every ship could potentially enter combat. This is an important thing to consider when joining the Navy.
Officer positions also exist
The U.S. Navy also has a fairly substantial offshore combat division (not including the U.S. Marine Corps). The most famous of these is the Navy Sea Air and Land special operations division--the Navy SEALs. These teams of enlisted men run by officers carry out highly specialized, covert missions, often behind enemy lines.
The Navy SEALs are backed up by the Special Warfare Combatant Crafts (SWCC), which are manned by enlisted crewmen. These men drive the riverboats that SEALs disembark from when they deploy.
Unsurprisingly, these are the only onshore combat options available in the U.S. Navy, which is primarily concerned with ships.
The final combat category in the U.S. Navy is naval aviator. These men and women fly and navigate naval fighters and bombers in combat, dropping bombs on targets and engaging enemy fighters in dogfights. Helicopter pilot jobs are also available.
Pilots and navigators are paid extra flight pay, which reaches $840 per month after a few years of service (as of June 2010).
Every naval aviator is an officer . However, noncombat flight support jobs are available for enlisted men and women.