How the US Department of Defence coordinates operations around the world

The US military has a truly global reach, with a presence on every continent. To carry out the herculean task of promoting US interests around the world, the Department of Defence divides the globe into six areas of responsibility and three non-geographic commands. Through these nine commands, the military monitors the entire planet every minute of every day, every day of the year.

US African Command (AFRICOM)

Department of Defense

Headquartered in Stuttgart, Germany.

Responsible for 'all US Department of Defence operations, exercises, and security cooperation on the African continent, its island nations, and surrounding waters.'

Excludes Egypt.

'US Africa Command has approximately 2,000 assigned personnel, including military, US federal civilian employees, and US contractor employees.'

Source

US Central Command (CENTCOM)

Department of Defense

Headquartered in MacDill Air Force Base, in Tampa, Florida.

Responsible for 20 countries in the 'center' of the globe -- Afghanistan, Bahrain, Egypt, Iran, Iraq, Jordan, Kazakhstan, Kuwait, Kyrgyzstan, Lebanon, Oman, Pakistan, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, United Arab Emirates, Uzbekistan, and Yemen.

'With national and international partners, US Central Command promotes cooperation among nations, responds to crises, and deters or defeats state and nonstate aggression, and supports development and, when necessary, reconstruction in order to establish the conditions for regional security, stability, and prosperity.'

Source

US European Command (EUCOM)

Department of Defense

Headquartered in Stuttgart, Germany.

Responsible for conducting 'military operations, international military engagement, and inter-agency partnering to enhance transatlantic security and defend the US forward.'

Includes the entire European continent and Russia.

'EUCOM is at the nucleus for NATO and other initiatives that develop stronger partnerships within the European theatre.'

Source

US Northern Command (NORTHCOM)

Department of Defense

Headquartered in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

Responsible for 'air, land, and sea approaches and encompasses the continental US, Alaska, Canada, Mexico and the surrounding water out to approximately 500 nautical miles.' Also, the Gulf of Mexico, the Straits of Florida, portions of the Caribbean region to include the Bahamas, Puerto Rico, and the US.

'The commander of NORTHCOM also commands the North American Aerospace Defence Command (NORAD), a bi-national command responsible for aerospace warning, aerospace control, and maritime warning for Canada, Alaska and the continental United States.'

Source

US Pacific Command (USPACOM)

Department of Defense

Headquartered in the Nimitz-MacArthur Building on Camp H.M. Smith outside of Honolulu, Hawaii.

Responsible for 36 nations and 'about half the earth's surface, stretching from the waters off the west coast of the US to the western border of India, and from Antarctica to the North Pole.'

'Approximately 360,000 US military and civilian personnel are assigned to the USPACOM area of responsibility. US Pacific Fleet consists of approximately 200 ships (to include five aircraft carrier strike groups), nearly 1,100 aircraft, and 140,000 Sailors and civilians dedicated to protecting our mutual security interests. Marine Corps Forces, Pacific includes two Marine Expeditionary Forces and about 86,000 personnel and 640 aircraft assigned. US Pacific Air Forces comprises of approximately 46,000 airmen and civilians and more than 420 aircraft. US Army Pacific has approximately 106,000 personnel from one corps and two divisions, plus over 300 aircraft and five watercraft assigned throughout the AOR from Japan and Korea to Alaska and Hawaii. Of note, component command personnel numbers include more than 1,200 Special Operations personnel. Department of Defence civilian employees in the Pacific Command AOR number about 38,000.'

Source

US Southern Command (SOUTHCOM)

Department of Defense

Headquartered in Doral, Florida.

Responsible for 'providing contingency planning, operations, and security cooperation' Central America, South America, the Caribbean (except US commonwealths, territories, and possessions).

Comprises more than 1,200 servicemembers and civilians from the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, Coast Guard, and other federal agencies.

Source

US Special Operations Command (SOCOM)

Department of Defense

Headquartered in MacDill Air Force Base, Florida.

Has 10 responsibilities and authorities: Develop special operations strategy, doctrine and tactics, prepare and submit budget proposals for SOF; Exercise authority, direction and control over special operations expenditures; Train assigned forces; Conduct specialised courses of instruction; Validate requirements; Establish requirement priorities; Ensure interoperability of equipment and forces; Formulate and submit intelligence support requirements; Monitor Special Operations officers' promotions, assignments, retention, training and professional military education; Ensure Special Operations Forces' combat readiness; Monitor Special Operations Forces' preparedness to carry out assigned missions; Develop and acquire special operations-peculiar equipment, materiel, supplies and services.

'USSOCOM is not dependent on the Army, Navy, Marine Corps or Air Force for its budget or to develop and buy new equipment, supplies or services for the command. USSOCOM has its own budgetary authorities and responsibilities through a specific Major Force Program in DOD's budget. Additionally, USSOCOM has its own acquisition authorities, so it can develop and buy special operations-peculiar equipment, supplies or services.'

Source

US Strategic Command (STRATCOM)

Department of Defense

Headquartered in Offutt Air Force Base, near Omaha, Nebraska.

Responsible for conducting 'global operations in coordination with other Combatant Commands, Services, and appropriate US Government agencies to deter and detect strategic attacks against the US, its allies, and partners and is prepared to defend the Nation as directed.'

'STRATCOM combines the synergy of the US legacy nuclear command and control mission with responsibility for space operations; global strike; global missile defence; and global command, control, communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (C4ISR), and combating weapons of mass destruction.'

Source

United States Transportation Command (TRANSCOM)

Department of Defense

Headquartered in Scott Air Force Base in Illinois.

Responsible for providing 'support to the eight other US combatant commands, the military services, defence agencies and other government organisations.'

'With its people, trucks, trains, rail-cars, aircraft, ships, information systems and infrastructure, as well as through our commercial partners providing 1,203 aircraft and 379 vessels in the Civil Reserve Air Fleet and Voluntary Intermodal Sealift Agreement, respectively, USTRANSCOM provides the US with the most responsive strategic mobility capability the world has ever seen.'

Source

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