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United States Strategic Command
USSTRATCOM emblem.jpg
Active June 1, 1992[1] to present
Country United States
Type Functional Combatant Command
Role "Leaders in Strategic Deterrence and Preeminent Global Warfighters In Space and Cyberspace."[2]
Part of Modified J-code
Garrison/HQ Offutt Air Force Base, NE
Gen Kevin P. Chilton, USAF

United States Strategic Command (USSTRATCOM) is one of the ten Unified Combatant Commands of the United States Department of Defense. The Command, including components, employs more than 2,700 people, representing all four services, including DoD Civilians and contractors, who oversee the command's operationally focused global strategic mission.

Strategic Command was established in 1992 as a successor to Strategic Air Command (SAC).

It is charged with space operations (such as military satellite), information operations (such as Information warfare), missile defense, global command and control, intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (C4ISR), global strike and strategic deterrence (the United States nuclear arsenal), and combating weapons of mass destruction.

USSTRATCOM is headquartered at Offutt Air Force Base south of Omaha, Nebraska. In 2002, USSTRATCOM absorbed the United States Space Command (USSPACECOM).

USSTRATCOM is one of the four Unified Combatant Commands organized along a functional basis. The other six are organized on a geographical basis.

The unified military combat command structure is intended to give the President and the Secretary of Defense a unified resource for greater understanding of specific threats around the world and the means to respond to those threats as quickly as possible.


Mission Statement

The LeMay building

USSTRATCOM promotes global security for America by: The missions of U.S. Strategic Command are to deter attacks on U.S. vital interests, to ensure U.S. freedom of action in space and cyberspace, to deliver integrated kinetic and non-kinetic effects to include nuclear and information operations in support of U.S. Joint Force Commander operations, to synchronize global missile defense plans and operations, to synchronize regional combating of weapons of mass destruction plans, to provide integrated surveillance and reconnaissance allocation recommendations to the SECDEF, and to advocate for capabilities as assigned.


In 2007, General Kevin P. Chilton took over command of USSTRATCOM. He served as the senior commander of the joint military forces from the four branches of the military assigned to the command (Coast Guard does not have personnel assigned to USSTRATCOM). He is the leader, steward and advocate of the nation's strategic capabilities.

His responsibilities include integrating and coordinating the necessary command and control capability to provide support with the most accurate and timely information for the President of the United States, the Secretary of Defense, and to regional combatant commanders.

On May 7, 2009, Chilton stated that the United States would not be constrained in its response to a cyber attack, therefore demonstrating the utility of his command which combines cyber defense with global strike.[3]


Primary operational units

USSTRATCOM exercises command authority over four joint functional component commands, also known as JFCCs as well as Joint Task Forces and Service Components. This combination of authorities, oversight, leadership and management is supposed to enable a more responsive, flattened organizational construct according to the commands leadership.

  • Joint Functional Component Commands These commands are responsible for the day-to-day planning and execution of primary mission areas: space and global strike; intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance; network warfare; integrated missile defense; and the recently added mission of combating weapons of mass destruction.
    • Joint Functional Component Command for Global Strike (JFCC-GS) The Commander Eighth Air Force (AFSTRAT-GS) serves as the Joint Functional Component Commander for Global Strike. JFCC-GS conducts planning, integration, execution and force management of assigned missions of deterring attacks against the U.S., its territories, possessions and bases, and should deterrence fail, by employing appropriate forces. Some of these tasks belonged to a JFCC for Space and Global Strike before being split into two components.
    • Joint Functional Component Command for Space (JFCC SPACE) The Commander 14th Air Force (AFSTRAT-SP) serves as the commander for JFCC SPACE. This component conducts planning, execution, and force management, as directed by the commander of USSTRATCOM, of the assigned missions of coordinating, planning, and conducting space operations.
    • Joint Functional Component Command for Integrated Missile Defense (JFCC IMD)—The Commander, U.S. Army Space and Missile Defense Command/Army Forces Strategic Command, also serves as the commander for the JFCC IMD. This component is responsible for meeting USSTRATCOM's Unified Command Plan responsibilities for planning, integrating, and coordinating global missile defense operations and support. JFCC IMD conducts the day-to-day operations of assigned forces and coordinates activities with associated combatant commands, other USSTRATCOM Joint Functional Components and the efforts of the Missile Defense Agency.
    • Joint Functional Component Command - Network Warfare (JFCC NW)—Initiated in January 2005, this component facilitates cooperative engagement with other national entities in Computer Network Defense and offensive Information Warfare as part of the Global Information Operations (IO) mission. This coordinated approach to information operations involves two other important supporting commands - JTF-GNO and DISA.
    • Joint Functional Component Command for Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (JFCC-ISR)—The Commander, JFCC-ISR, also serves as the Director, Defense Intelligence Agency. This component is responsible for coordinating global intelligence collection to address DoD worldwide operations and national intelligence requirements. It will serve as the center for planning, execution and assessment of the military's global Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance operations; a key enabler to achieving global situational awareness.
    • Center for Combating Weapons of Mass Destruction (SCC WMD)—The Secretary of Defense recently assigned USSTRATCOM responsibility for integrating and synchronizing DoD's efforts for combating weapons of mass destruction. SCC WMD works closely with the Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA) and declared Initial Operating Capability on January 26, 2006 in a ceremony in Washington, D.C.[4]
    • Joint Information Operations Warfare Center (JIOWC)—The JIOWC plans, integrates, and synchronizes Information Operations (IO) in direct support of Joint Force Commanders and serves as the USSTRATCOM lead for enhancing IO across DoD. Located at Lackland AFB, Texas, the JIOWC deploys information operations planning teams worldwide at a moment's notice to support combatant commanders and joint task forces.

Task Forces

USSTRATCOM relies on various task forces for the execution of its global missions. These include:


A previous commander, General James Cartwright (2004-07), explored ways to incorporate innovative collaborative tools into what has traditionally been considered a very centralized military organization. Speaking at a convention Cartwright said, "Where I would like to be is well outside the comfort zone of my organization. But what we've started with is just some simple 'blogging' tools, to try to change the culture a little bit; to try to allow people to contribute."[citation needed]


United States Strategic Command

On June 1, 1992, President George H. W. Bush established the U.S. Strategic Command out of the Strategic Air Command (SAC) and other Cold War military bodies, now obsolete due to the change in world politics. The Command unified planning, targeting and wartime employment of strategic forces under one commander. Day-to-day training, equipment and maintenance responsibilities for its forces remained with the Air Force and Navy.

As a result of the 2002 Nuclear Posture Review, the Cold War system of relying solely on offensive nuclear response was modified. Shortly after a meeting between President George W. Bush and Russian President Vladimir Putin in Moscow in May 2002, a summit was held during which both leaders signed a treaty promising bilateral reductions that would result in a total of 1,700 to 2,200 operationally deployed strategic nuclear weapons for each country by the year 2012.

Commanders of U.S. Strategic Command:

  1. General George L. Butler, USAF (1992-1994)
  2. Admiral Henry G. Chiles, Jr., USN (1994-1996)
  3. General Eugene E. Habiger, USAF (1996–1998)
  4. Admiral Richard W. Mies, USN (1998–2002)
  5. Admiral James O. Ellis, Jr., USN (2002–2004)
  6. General James E. Cartwright, USMC (2004–2007)
  7. Lt. Gen C. Robert Kehler, USAF (August 4, 2007–October 17, 2007) (Acting)
  8. General Kevin P. Chilton, USAF (2007– )

United States Space Command

United States Space Command
United States Space Command emblem.gif
U.S. Space Command emblem
Active 1985 - 2002
Country U.S.A.
Type Unified Combatant Command
Garrison/HQ Peterson AFB, Colorado

The United States Space Command (USSPACECOM) was a Unified Combatant Command of the United States Department of Defense, created in 1985 to help institutionalize the use of outer space by the United States Armed Forces. The Commander in Chief of U.S. Space Command (CINCUSSPACECOM), with headquarters at Peterson Air Force Base, Colorado was also the Commander in Chief of the binational U.S.-Canadian North American Aerospace Defense Command (CINCNORAD), and for the majority of time during USSPACECOM’s existence also the Commander of the U.S. Air Force major command Air Force Space Command. Military space operations coordinated by USSPACECOM proved to be very valuable for the U.S.-led coalition in the 1991 Persian Gulf War.

The U.S. military has relied on communications, intelligence, navigation, missile warning and weather satellite systems in areas of conflict since the early 1990s, including the Balkans, Southwest Asia and Afghanistan. Space systems have since then been considered as indispensable providers of tactical information to U.S. warfighters.

As part of the ongoing initiative to transform the U.S. military, on June 26, 2002, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld announced that U.S. Space Command would merge with USSTRATCOM. The Unified Command Plan directed that Unified Combatant Commands be capped at ten, and with the formation of the new United States Northern Command, one would have to be deactivated in order to maintain that level. Thus the USSPACECOM merger into an expanded USSTRATCOM, which would retain the U.S. Strategic Command name and would be headquartered at Offutt Air Force Base. The merger was intended to improve combat effectiveness and speeds up information collection and assessment needed for strategic decision-making.

Space and Global Strike Reorganization

The activation of the new USSTRATCOM took place on October 1, 2002. The merged command was responsible for both early warning of and defense against missile attack as well as long-range strategic attacks.

President Bush signed Change Two to the Unified Command Plan on January 10, 2003, and tasked USSTRATCOM with four previously unassigned responsibilities: global strike, missile defense integration, Department of Defense Information Operations, and C4ISR (command and control, communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance). This combination of roles, capabilities and authorities under a single unified command was unique in the history of unified commands.

After some consideration concerning the separation of the JFCC for Space and Global Strike missions, according to[6] and,[7] In 2005, General Cartwright began the process of separating the JFCC for Space and Global Strike into two individual JFCCs: a JFCC for Space (JFCC Space) and a JFCC for Global Strike and Integration (JFCC GSI).[8] U.S. Strategic Command officials were expected to deliver a detailed plan on the separation to General Cartwright for approval by September 2006.[9]

Some officials believed this would allow each to focus more effectively on its primary mission and allow the mission of space to have focused attention and be better integrated with other military capabilities. This comes after some concern by officials and lawmakers such as U.S. Senator Wayne Allard (R-Colo.), an advocate for national security space activities, complained in a March 2006 memo to Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld about what he saw as a declining emphasis on space within the U.S. Department of Defense and specifically the way space has been organized at U.S. Strategic Command.[10]

As result of the separation, The Missile Correlation Center in Cheyenne Mountain AFS was broken into two separate entities. NORAD/NORTHCOM (N2C2) now controls the Missile and Space Domain (MSD) and JFCC Space controls the Missile Warning Center (MWC). They are both still located at Cheyenne Mountain AFS. It was expected that MSD would eventually move to Peterson AFB to join the rest of N2C2.[citation needed]

See also


External links

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