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United States Pacific Fleet
Commander United States Pacific Fleet logo.gif
Logo of the Commander, USPACFLT
Active 1907 - present
Country United States
Branch US Navy
Type Theater Command
Part of United States Pacific Command
Garrison/HQ Pearl Harbor Naval Base
Engagements World War II
Vietnam War
Global War on Terrorism
Commanders
Current
commander
Patrick M. Walsh
Notable
commanders
William D. Leahy
Husband E. Kimmel
Chester W. Nimitz
Raymond A. Spruance

The United States Pacific Fleet (USPACFLT) is a Pacific Ocean Navy theater-level component command of the United States Navy, under the operational control of the United States Pacific Command. Its homeport is at Pearl Harbor Naval Base, Hawaii, commanded by Commander Pacific Fleet (COMPACFLT), a full (four-star) admiral. (The term, also used during World War II, was often shown as COMPACFLT as Navy typewriters in the ship's message centers at the time contained only capital letters to lessen the chance for typing or reading errors.) Prior to 24 October 2002, the commander was titled Commander-in-Chief, Pacific Fleet (CINCPACFLT).

A Pacific Fleet was created in 1907 when the Asiatic Squadron and the Pacific Squadron were joined. In 1910, the ships of the First Squadron, were organized back into a separate Asiatic Fleet. The General Order of 6 December 1922 organized the United States Fleet, with the Battle Fleet as the Pacific presence.

The fleet's modern incarnation dates from the splitting of the United States Fleet up into the Atlantic and Pacific fleets prior to World War II.

Until May 1940, this unit was stationed on the west coast of the United States. During the summer of that year, as part of the U.S. response to Japanese expansionism, it was instructed to take an "advanced" position at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. Long term basing at Pearl was so strongly opposed by the commander, Admiral James O. Richardson, that he personally protested in Washington. Political considerations were thought sufficiently important that he was relieved by Admiral Husband E. Kimmel, who was in command at the time of the attack on Pearl Harbor.

Admiral Claude C. Bloch commanded the local Naval District at Pearl, as distinct from the fleet, at the time of the attack.

Contents

Composition of the Pacific Fleet in May 1941

In 1941, the fleet consisted of nine battleships, three aircraft carriers, 12 heavy cruisers, eight light cruisers, 50 destroyers, 33 submarines, and 100 patrol bombers. This was approximately the unit's strength at the time of the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor.

On 7 December 1941 the Fleet consisted of Battle Force, PACFLT, Scouting Force, PACFLT, Base Force, PACFLT, and Amphibious Force, PACFLT.[1] That day the Japanese Combined Fleet carried out the Attack on Pearl Harbor, initiating World War II in the Pacific. The Fleet's battle line was severely damaged, forcing the U.S. Navy to rely primarily on aircraft carriers for many months afterwards.

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Fleet Major Commands during World War II

  • Air Forces Pacific Fleet AIRPAC, COMAIRPAC
  • Carriers Pacific Fleet CARPAC, COMCARPAC
    Carrier Division CARDIV, COMCARDIV

Current composition

Currently, the Pacific Fleet consists of the numbered Third and Seventh Fleets, as well as Naval Air Force, Pacific, Naval Surface Forces, Pacific, Naval Submarine Force, Pacific and other commands.

The naval shore commands Naval Forces, Korea, Naval Forces, Japan, and Naval Forces, Marianas are also under the authority of the Pacific Fleet.

See List of units of the United States Navy

Commanders

See also

Notes

External links


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