United States Navy
Organization and Missions
At the beginning of fiscal year 2006, Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) Adm. Michael G. Mullen wrote in his “CNO’s Guidance for 2006” that “We are a nation and a Navy at war … [and] on the cusp of a new era.”
The new era will build upon the U.S. Navy’s Sea Power 21 vision, forging a modern fleet that ensures American security, maintains freedom of commerce on the high seas, and is large enough, agile enough and combat-ready enough to deter any adversary.
Mullen has committed his service to three priorities, as spelled out in the “Guidance:”
- “Sustain combat readiness … with the right combat capabilities — access, speed, agility, adaptability, persistence, awareness and lethality — for the right cost.
- “Build a fleet for the future … balanced, rotational, forward-deployed and surge-capable of the proper size and mix of capabilities to empower our enduring and emerging partners, deter our adversaries and defeat our enemies.
- “Develop 21st century leaders … through a transformed manpower, personnel, training and education organization that better competes for the talent our country produces and creates the conditions in which the full potential of every man and woman serving our Navy can be achieved.”
In pursuit of these goals, Mullen has called upon the Navy to maintain close and productive partnerships with the U.S. Marine Corps, joint-service commands, the U.S. Coast Guard, and other services and agencies. According to Mullen, these partnerships will improve homeland defense and national security capabilities by developing “adaptive force packages” that may be applied to a full spectrum of naval operations, from riverine, to littoral, to blue water.
During fiscal 2006, the Navy will develop a comprehensive concept of operations for missile defense capability that protects the fleet’s sea base, allied territory and the U.S. homeland. Mullen also has called for stabilization of the Navy budget’s shipbuilding account, as well as joint Navy and Marine Corps planning for tactical aircraft, helicopter and unmanned air vehicle acquisition.
Expeditionary Combatant Command
A major effort to be undertaken during fiscal 2006 is the establishment of a new Expeditionary Combat Command, strengthening fleet capabilities for maritime interdiction operations, combat and force protection and civil affairs. During an Oct. 13 roundtable meeting with the media, Mullen outlined his vision for the new organization.
According to the CNO, the new organization will reinforce the role Navy fleet commanders have as Joint Force Maritime Component Commanders worldwide. The Expeditionary Combat Command covers a broad spectrum of capabilities, including developing riverine forces and what Mullen referred to as “the green-water force,” those that operate throughout the littoral or coastal battle space.
The Expeditionary Combat Command will have “embedded” capabilities, for example, in explosive ordnance disposal, as has been spotlighted in recent efforts to counter the threat from improvised explosive devices in Iraq. Also, maritime security detachments that protect vital infrastructure, such as oil platforms, will be among the Expeditionary Combat Command’s portfolio.
Status of the Navy
As of October 2005, 35 percent of the fleet’s ships were forward-deployed, as were almost 38,000 sailors. Mullen defines their four-part mission as: “winning the global war on terror (and any other armed conflict), deterring aggression by would-be foes, preserving freedom of the seas and promoting peace and security.”
The current state of the Navy includes 360,408 active duty (including 52,706 officers and 303,431 enlisted); and 139,987 reserve men and women, as of Oct. 31. The Department of the Navy also had 176,377 civilian employees. The fleet is composed of 280 battle force ships and submarines (including 92 ships and 11 submarines on deployment), and more than 4,000 operational aircraft.
The modern U.S. Navy inherits a legacy founded on Oct. 13, 1775, when the Continental Congress established the precursor of today’s fleet. After the American Revolution, however, the new republic sold its small fleet and was without naval power until the 1780s, when confrontations with Mediterranean pirates and France threatened American commercial interests abroad.
In 1789, the U.S. Constitution empowered Congress “to provide and maintain a Navy.” Congress authorized the procurement and manning of six frigates. Three ships — the United States, Constellation and Constitution — were launched in 1797 and the U.S. Navy was born. In April 1798, Congress established the Department of the Navy and Benjamin Stoddert was its first secretary.
The Secretary of the Navy
On Nov. 10, 2005, the U.S. Senate confirmed Donald C. Winter as secretary of the Navy. Winter succeeds Gordon R. England, who has been serving as acting deputy defense secretary since spring 2005 while the Senate debates his nomination to that post. During his time as an executive with Northrop Grumman Corp., Winter was president of the company’s Mission Systems sector, which produces technologies for missile and command, control and intelligence systems. From 1980-1982, Winter served with the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency as program manager for space acquisition and tracking programs.
The secretary conducts all of the affairs of the Department of the Navy, including recruiting, organizing, supplying, equipping, training, mobilizing and demobilizing. The office oversees the construction, outfitting and repair of naval ships, equipment and facilities, and is responsible for the formulation and implementation of naval policies and programs that are consistent with the national security policies and objectives established by the president and the secretary of defense.
Within the office of the Secretary of the Navy, four assistant secretaries are assigned functional responsibilities for policy formulation and oversight of organizing, building, outfitting, manning and training the fleet and Marine units. The assistant secretary of the Navy (Research, Development and Acquisition), for example, is the acquisition executive responsible for procurement and logistical support of all platforms and weapon systems for the Navy and Marine Corps.
The Chief of Naval Operations
Mullen was confirmed as the 28th CNO on July 22. A career surface warfare officer, his commands included the destroyer USS Goldsborough, the cruiser USS Yorktown, Cruiser-Destroyer Group Two, the George Washington Battle Group, and commander, U.S. Second Fleet/commander, NATO Striking Fleet Atlantic.
The CNO is the senior naval officer in the Department of the Navy and serves as a member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. The CNO is responsible to the secretary of the Navy for command, use of resources and operating efficiency of the operating forces of the Navy and of the Navy shore activities assigned by the secretary.
Organization and Missions
The Navy’s operating forces comprise the ships and aircraft assigned to the U.S. Atlantic and Pacific Fleets, U.S. Naval Forces Europe and U.S. Naval Forces Central Command, as well as those of the Military Sealift Command. Additional operating units fall under the command of the chief of Naval Reserve, the Naval Special Warfare Command and Operational Test and Evaluation forces.
The Navy’s primary operational commanders have a dual chain of command. Administratively, they report to the CNO and provide, train and equip naval forces. Operationally, they provide naval forces and report to the appropriate regional unified commanders for U.S. combatant commands.
As units of the Navy enter the geographical area of responsibility of a unified command, they are operationally assigned to the appropriate numbered Navy fleet. All fleet units also report to their appropriate type commanders (air, surface or submarine) for administrative purposes.
- Commander, U.S. Fleet Forces Command (COMUSFLTFORCOM); U.S. Atlantic Fleet
Commander, U.S. Fleet Forces Command, is based at Norfolk, Va., and led by Adm. John B. Nathman. Created in 2001, COMUSFLTFORCOM is responsible for manning, equipping and training all operational units in the Navy. The command is the senior fleet organization with authority over the requirements and readiness processes of fleets on both coasts and those based overseas. Nathman also is responsible for U.S. Atlantic Fleet, which provides combat-ready forces in support of U.S. and NATO commanders.
U.S. Atlantic Fleet covers the Atlantic Ocean from the North to the South Poles, the Caribbean Sea, the Gulf of Mexico and the Pacific Ocean waters from Central and South America to the Galapagos Islands. U.S. Atlantic Fleet also is the naval component commander for U.S. Northern Command, the organization tasked with the primary mission of homeland defense.
U.S. Second Fleet/NATO Striking Fleet Atlantic, under Vice Adm. Mark P. Fitzgerald, is a component of U.S. Atlantic Fleet responsible for the training and support of deploying forces, as well as a commanding multinational strike force.
- Commander, U.S. Pacific Fleet (COMUSPACFLT); U.S. Third Fleet; U.S. Seventh Fleet
From his headquarters at Naval Station Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, Adm. Gary Roughead, commander, U.S. Pacific Fleet, leads a force that patrols more than 50 percent of the earth’s surface — more than 100 million square miles. COMUSPACFLT’s ships are deployed in the Pacific, Indian and Arctic Oceans from the West Coast of the United States to the Arabian Gulf. COMUSPACFLT is the world’s largest naval command, extending from the West Coast of the United States to the eastern shoreline of Africa and from the North Pole to the South Pole — an area home to more than half the world’s population.
U.S. Third and Seventh Fleets provide stability through operations with friendly and allied navies, helping to ensure freedom of the seas through this vital region. COMUSPACFLT’s contribution to the Navy’s heritage dates back to 1821 and the establishment of the Pacific Squadron, the first permanent U.S. naval presence in the region. This small force initially confined its activities to the waters off South America, but expanded its scope to include the Western Pacific in 1835, when the East India Squadron joined the force.
In recent years, COMUSPACFLT has increased operations with friendly and allied navies. The Pacific Fleet’s geographic area includes the Indian Ocean, where aircraft Carrier Battle Groups and Amphibious Ready Groups operate in support of U.S. national interests. COMUSPACFLT Navy and Marine Corps assets are regularly assigned to the operational control of U.S. Naval Forces Central Command, and to the U.S. Fifth Fleet, for deployments to the Persian Gulf and North Arabian Sea.
- Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Central Command (COMUSNAVCENT)
Vice Adm. David C. Nichols Jr., commander, U.S. Naval Forces Central Command, serves as the naval component commander for the U.S. Central Command and as commander of the U.S. Fifth Fleet. From his headquarters in Bahrain, Nichols is responsible for the conduct of naval operations from the Eastern Mediterranean to the Horn of Africa, through the Arabian Gulf and into Central Asia. The region includes 27 nations, encompassing 7.5 million square miles, four major bodies of water and three strategic choke points, through which pass 70 percent of the world’s oil production.
As a numbered fleet commander, Nichols exercises overall command and control of his assigned forces including Carrier Battle Groups, an Amphibious Ready Group with an embarked Marine Expeditionary Unit, surface combatants, submarines, maritime patrol and reconnaissance aircraft and logistics ships. The U.S. Fifth Fleet maintains a highly visible presence in support of the overall U.S. National Security Strategy.
- Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Europe (COMUSNAVEUR)
The commander, U.S. Naval Forces Europe, Adm. Henry G. Ulrich III, provides overall command and operational control of all U.S. naval forces assigned to the U.S. European Command (USEUCOM). From his headquarters in London, Ulrich develops operational plans and policy, and coordinates logistics, communications, legal and administrative support among naval forces operating in the USEUCOM area of responsibility — Europe and its contiguous waters, the Mediterranean Sea and the continent of Africa.
Ulrich also is the commander of NATO’s Joint Force Command, Naples, Italy. COMUSNAVEUR’s operating forces are composed of the ships and aircraft of the U.S. Sixth Fleet operating in the Mediterranean Sea, Black Sea and adjacent areas.
- Naval Installations Command (CNI)
Under Rear Adm. Christopher E. Weaver, reporting directly to the CNO, Naval Installations Command was established in 2003 to consolidate fleet and regional installation management. Today, CNI is well on its way to being the single organization overseeing the effectiveness and improvement of the U.S. Navy’s shore installations in support of the fleet, across 10 regions in the continental United States and seven regions abroad.
- Bureau of Naval Personnel (BUPERS)
Recruiting and retaining sailors, enlisted and officers are the highest priorities for Naval Personnel Command. Vice Adm. John C. Harvey Jr. leads the Bureau of Naval Personnel, serving as both chief of naval personnel and deputy CNO (manpower and personnel). BUPERS — located in Washington, D.C., and Millington, Tenn., — oversees active and naval reserve recruiting, assignment policies and programs, and the enlisted advancement and officer promotion processes as well as personnel pay, bonus and retention policies.
Mullen has emphasized the importance of a “transformed manpower, personnel, training and education organization” that provides opportunities for sailors analogous to those available in the civilian marketplace. The U.S. Navy’s human resources strategy is based on a concept called Sea Warrior, which is aimed at producing “highly trained, motivated and optimally employed” sailors. Mullen has called for a continued merger of manpower, personnel, training and education to yield measurable progress in developing strong leaders for the future force.
- Naval Education and Training Command (NETC)
Under Vice Adm. J. Kevin Moran, Naval Education and Training Command is responsible to the CNO for the education and training of Navy and Marine Corps personnel. The command includes several organizations such as the Human Performance Center, Naval Education Training Professional Development Technology Center, Naval Service Training Command, Naval Personnel Development Command, Chief of Naval Air Training, Naval War College and Naval Postgraduate School.
Moran manages a network of training and education programs throughout the United States and on ships at sea. One of the largest shore commands in the Navy, NETC, headquartered at Pensacola, Fla., is composed of approximately 22,000 military, civilian and contract personnel stationed at 190 activities nationwide. A daily average of more than 47,000 military, civilian and foreign students are in training in more than 3,600 different courses at 30 installations. The training command also supervises and manages 57 Naval Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC) units at colleges and universities throughout the United States and 570 Naval Junior ROTC units at civilian high schools in 43 states, Washington, D.C., Guam, Italy and Japan.
- Bureau of Medicine and Surgery (BUMED)
Under Navy Surgeon General Vice Adm. Donald C. Arthur Jr., the Bureau of Medicine and Surgery provides health care service to up to 2.6 million active-duty and retired Navy and Marine Corps personnel, and their families. The Navy Medicine Strategic Plan outlines a focus on creating and maintaining health and fitness among the forces, to deploying in support of ongoing operations, and supporting naval personnel and their families on the home front.
According to BUMED, the command includes 31,591 active duty and 8,177 reserve personnel, 11,473 civilians and 2,442 contractors. BUMED has 157 medical treatment facilities and 140 dental treatment facilities worldwide.
- The Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA)
Under Vice Adm. Paul E. Sullivan, Naval Sea Systems Command develops and produces new naval ships and weapons systems. NAVSEA maintains, modernizes and provides logistics support for in-service ships and weapons systems, salvage and diving operations, explosive ordnance disposal and shipbuilding for the U.S. Maritime Administration. NAVSEA is the largest of the five Navy systems commands, accounting for nearly one-fifth of the Navy’s budget (approximately $20 billion).
NAVSEA’s constituent commands include the Naval Surface Warfare Centers at Carderock, Md.; Crane, Ind.; Dahlgren, Va.; Indian Head, Md.; Panama City, Fla.; and Port Hueneme, Calif. Additional field organizations include the Naval Undersea Warfare Centers at Newport, R.I., and Keyport, Wash. The naval shipyards are the nucleus of NAVSEA’s “One Shipyard” enterprise concept, including Norfolk, Va.; Pearl Harbor, Hawaii; Portsmouth, Maine; and Puget Sound, Wash. NAVSEA also governs the activities of the Supervisor of Shipbuilding conversion and repair facilities located around the United States.
- The Naval Aviation Systems Command (NAVAIR)
Based at Naval Air Station Patuxent River, Md., Naval Aviation Systems Command, under Vice Adm. Walter B. Massenburg, develops, produces and supports aircraft and weapon systems for the Navy and Marine Corps. NAVAIR includes 28,000 personnel.
NAVAIR manages facilities throughout the United States, including the weapons systems development and test ranges at China Lake and Point Mugu, Calif.; aircraft systems development at Patuxent River; training systems at Orlando, Fla.; support equipment at Lakehurst, N.J.; and supply and maintenance facilities at North Island, Calif., and Cherry Point, N.C. Overseas, NAVAIR manages aviation support facilities at Atsugi, Japan, and Naples, Italy.
- The Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command (SPAWAR)
Under Rear Adm. (lower half) (sel.) Timothy V. Flynn, Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command is based at San Diego. SPAWAR provides Navy command, control, communications, computing, intelligence, surveillance and space systems. SPAWAR includes 7,600 personnel and an annual budget in excess of $5.8 billion.
SPAWAR’s core mission is to provide information that yields operational effects, the core tenet of the U.S. Navy’s FORCEnet concept. FORCEnet is the term used to describe the networking of naval and joint command, control, communications, computing, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities.
- The Naval Supply Systems Command (NAVSUP)|
Under Rear Adm. Daniel H. Stone, Naval Supply Systems Command provides supply, contracting, conventional ordnance, fuel, transportation, food service and other support for the operating forces and shore establishment. NAVSUP is based in Mechanicsburg, Penn.
- The Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC)
Under Rear Adm. Michael K. Loose, Naval Facilities Engineering Command plans, designs and constructs naval facilities around the world. Based at the Navy Yard in Washington, D.C., NAVFAC provides technical, engineering and program-management support for public works, family housing and public utilities for the Department of the Navy. It also acquires and disposes of the Department of the Navy’s real estate and is the program manager for Navy bachelor housing.
NAVFAC provides technical, engineering and program-management support to expedite the realignment and closure of naval bases and the command manages all of the Navy Department’s environmental projects and programs ashore.