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In the U.S. Navy, "signalman" (usually nicknamed "Flags" or "Skivvy Waver") was a job field combining both visual communications, and advanced lookout skills. While there was certainly a Signalman rating before World War II (the Signalman rating is one of the oldest in the Navy), a specialized Signalman rating was established shortly after the war. Then, Signalmen were identified by the symbol of two crossed semaphore flags on the right sleeve of the uniform, integrated with their rank insignia. Signalmen were responsible for transmitting, receiving, encoding, decoding, and distributing messages obtained via the visual transmission systems of flag semaphore, visual morse code, and flaghoist signalling. The U.S. Navy disestablished the rating of Signalman in late 2003, reassigning visual communications duties to the Quartermaster rating. Signalmen were either absorbed into the Quartermaster rating, or allowed to switch to other job fields in the Navy. Many chose the Master-at-Arms rating, which expanded dramatically to meet the needs of the Navy in the War on Terror.
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