The President may award a silver star medal of appropriate design, with ribbons and appurtenances, to a person who, while serving in any capacity with the Navy or Marine Corps, is cited for gallantry in action that does not warrant a medal of honor or Navy cross—
(1)while engaged in an action against an enemy of the United States;
(2)while engaged in military operations involving conflict with an opposing foreign force; or
(3)while serving with friendly foreign forces engaged in an armed conflict against an opposing armed force in which the United States is not a belligerent party.
The word “award” is substituted for the word “present” to cover the determination of the recipient as well as the actual presenting of the decoration. The words “but not in the name of Congress” are omitted as surplusage, since a decoration is presented in the name of Congress only if the law so directs. The words “Navy or the Marine Corps” are substituted for the words “Navy of the United States” because the provision is interpreted as authorizing the award of the medal to persons serving with the Marine Corps. The words “since December 6, 1941, has distinguished himself” are omitted as executed.
1963—Pub. L. 88–77enlarged the authority to award a silver star medal, which was limited to those cases in which persons distinguished themselves in action, to permit its award for gallantry while engaged in an action against an enemy of the United States, while engaged in military operations involving conflict with an opposing foreign force, or while serving with friendly foreign forces engaged in an armed conflict against an opposing armed force in which the United States is not a belligerent party.
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The most recent Classification Table update that we have noticed was Tuesday, August 13, 2013
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