Department of Defense 101
We are America's oldest company, largest company, busiest company, and most successful company. We have 1.4 million active duty personnel, 654,000 civilians, 1.2 million Guard and Reserve personnel, and 2.0 million retirees and families receiving benefits. We operate from more than 6,000 locations, using more than 30 million acres, and more than 600,000 buildings and structures. We are in more than 146 countries and have more than 473,881 personnel overseas or afloat. Our budget of $371 billion pays the 2,036,000 individuals in our employ. 95% of our personnel have high school diplomas, in comparison with the national work force's 79%. 5.6% of our personnel have Master's Degrees versus 4.9% of the national work force. We instill duty, integrity, ethics, honor, courage, and loyalty into the core values of our personnel.
We work for the Chief Executive Officer also known as The President of the United States. We have a Board of Directors known as The United States Congress and Stockholders, known as the American People. We formulate national security & defense policy and integrate DoD policy and plans to achieve security objectives. We ensure we are Force Ready through Personnel Management, National Guard & Reserves, Military readiness, and through promoting Equal Opportunity, morale, welfare, and quality of life for our personnel. We are involved in researching, testing, buying, producing, and building new products. We advise on new technology and ensure environmental compliance of these products. We also guide Departmental use of atomic energy.
Our Department of Defense consists of the U.S. Army, U.S. Air Force, U.S. Navy, and U.S. Marine Corps. An extension of that department is the Department of Transportation made up of the Coast Guard. The Army's purpose is to defense U.S. territory and any occupied areas as well as to overcome any agressor that imperils our nation's peace and security. The Air Force is to defend the U.S. through control and exploitation of air and space. The Navy's mission is to maintain, train, and equip combat-ready forces capable of winning wars, deterring aggression and maintaining freedom of the seas. The Marine Corps job is to maintain ready expeditionary forces consisting of sea-based, integrated air-ground units for contingency and combat operations. They are also to stabilize or contain international disturbances. The Coast Guard provides law and maritime safety, marine and environmental protection, and military naval support. Meanwhile, the Guard and Reserves provide wartime military support, as well as humanitarian aid, peace-keeping, and Homeland Security needs.
The Joint Forces Command has a world-wide responsibility to maintain a tranformation laboratory, develop joint warfighting strategy and capabilities, as well as define and test joint warfighting concepts and requirements.
The Strategic Command Centers are focused to deter attacks on the U.S. and its allies, control strategic nuclear forces as well as to operate communications, weather, navigation, and ballistic missile attack warning satellites. They are also to insure U.S. space access and to deny the enemy the same. Should deterrence fail, they are to employ forces to achieve national objectives.
The Special Operations Command is to provide counter-paramilitary, counter-narcotics, guerilla, psychological warfare, civil education, and insurgency capability in support of U.S. national and international interests.
Transporation Command provides air, land and sea transportation for the Department of Defense in times of peace and war.
The War on Terrorism, which escalated after the September 11, 2001 destruction of the World Trade Center in New York City, has some specific goals. We will communicate that supporting terrorism carries a steep price, acquire intelligence, develop friendly relationships, eliminate terror operations, deny enemy access to offensive systems and provide humanitarian relief.
The Homeland Security Act concentrates on traditional military missions; combat air patrols, and maritime defense as well as emergency response to the aftermath of attacks and military disasters. It also provides Special Event security support.
In a nutshell, what the Department of Defense does is: warfighting, humanitarian aid, peacekeeping, evacuation, and Homeland Security. We believe that our most important resource is not tanks, planes, or ships... it's PEOPLE. Our bottom line is to provide the military forces needed to deter war and to protect the security of the United States