U.S. Pacific Command, together with other U.S. government agencies, protects and defends the United States, its territories, allies and interests alongside allies and partners; promotes regional security and deters aggression; and, if deterrence fails, is prepared to respond to the full spectrum of military contingencies to restore Asia-Pacific stability and security.
The USPACOM area of responsibility encompasses about half the earth’s surface, stretching from the waters off the West Coast of the U.S. to the western border of India and from Antarctica to the North Pole. There are few regions as culturally, socially, economically and geopolitically diverse as the Asia-Pacific. The 36 nations that comprise the Asia-Pacific region are home to more than 50 percent of the world’s population, 3,000 languages, several of the world’s largest militaries and five nations allied with the U.S. through mutual defense treaties. Two of the three largest economies are in the Asia-Pacific along with 10 of the 14 smallest. The AOR includes the most populous nation in the world, the largest democracy and the largest Muslim-majority nation. More than one-third of Asia-Pacific nations are smaller, island nations, which includes the smallest republic in the world and the smallest nation in Asia.
USPACOM is one of six geographic Unified Combatant Commands of the U.S. armed forces. Commander, U.S. Pacific Command is the senior U.S. military authority in the Pacific Command AOR. CDRUSPACOM reports to the president of the United States through the secretary of defense and is supported by four component commands: U.S. Pacific Fleet, U.S. Pacific Air Forces, U.S. Army Pacific and U.S. Marine Forces, Pacific. These commands are headquartered in Hawaii and have forces stationed and deployed throughout the region.
About 380,000 U.S. military and civilian personnel are assigned to the USPACOM area of responsibility. U.S. Pacific Fleet consists of about 200 ships (to include five aircraft carrier strike groups), nearly 1,100 aircraft, and 140,000 sailors and civilians all dedicated to protecting our mutual security interests. U.S. Marine Corps Forces, Pacific includes two Marine Expeditionary Forces and about 86,000 personnel and 640 aircraft assigned. U.S. Pacific Air Forces comprises about 46,000 airmen and civilians and more than 420 aircraft. U.S. Army Pacific has about 106,000 personnel from one corps and two divisions, plus more than 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 Defense civilian employees in the Pacific Command AOR number about 38,000.
USPACOM recognizes the global significance of the Asia-Pacific region and understands that challenges are best met together. Consequently, USPACOM will remain an engaged and trusted partner committed to preserving the security, stability and freedom upon which enduring prosperity in the Asia-Pacific region depends.
USPACOM headquarters is in the Nimitz-MacArthur Building on Camp H.M. Smith just outside Honolulu.
Strategy and Guiding Principles
USPACOM strategy adheres to several guiding principles. Four principles were articulated by the U.S. secretary of defense to elaborate on the president’s guidance in January 2012 that the U.S. “will of necessity rebalance toward the Asia-Pacific.” These and three additional principles appear as consistent themes.
International Rules: Advance a set of rules that are respected and followed by all, highlighting open access to the shared domains of sea, air, space and cyberspace, and resolving disputes without coercion or the use of force.
Partnerships: Modernize and strengthen alliances and partnerships.
Presence: Enhance and adapt our enduring presence in the region and enable more effective engagement with partners.
Force Projection: Make a sustained series of investments and strategic decisions to strengthen U.S. military capabilities in the Asia-Pacific.
Unity of Effort: Contribute to U.S. whole-of-government approaches to resolving regional security challenges and support the broadest possible involvement of regional counterparts.
Strategic Communication: Ensure U.S. intent and resolve is conveyed clearly and that our words and actions are aligned.
Readiness to Fight and Win: USPACOM is first and foremost a warfighting command, committed to maintaining superiority across the range of military operations in all domains.
These principles help guide the partnership role that the United States will continue to play in the Asia-Pacific. This role is solidified geographically and through our alliances and partnerships in the Asia-Pacific. Our enduring interests of open access to the shared domains of sea, air, space and cyberspace are further amplified by the fact that the Asia-Pacific will be the economic center of trade for the foreseeable future and that continued prosperity is tied to the peaceful rise of China as an economic and military power.