10 U.S. Code § 167 - Unified combatant command for special operations forces

(a) Establishment.— With the advice and assistance of the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, the President, through the Secretary of Defense, shall establish under section 161 of this title a unified combatant command for special operations forces (hereinafter in this section referred to as the “special operations command”). The principal function of the command is to prepare special operations forces to carry out assigned missions.
(b) Assignment of Forces.— Unless otherwise directed by the Secretary of Defense, all active and reserve special operations forces of the armed forces stationed in the United States shall be assigned to the special operations command.
(c) Grade of Commander.— The commander of the special operations command shall hold the grade of general or, in the case of an officer of the Navy, admiral while serving in that position, without vacating his permanent grade. The commander of such command shall be appointed to that grade by the President, by and with the advice and consent of the Senate, for service in that position.
(d) Command of Activity or Mission.—
(1) Unless otherwise directed by the President or the Secretary of Defense, a special operations activity or mission shall be conducted under the command of the commander of the unified combatant command in whose geographic area the activity or mission is to be conducted.
(2) The commander of the special operations command shall exercise command of a selected special operations mission if directed to do so by the President or the Secretary of Defense.
(e) Authority of Combatant Commander.—
(1) In addition to the authority prescribed in section 164 (c) of this title, the commander of the special operations command shall be responsible for, and shall have the authority to conduct, all affairs of such command relating to special operations activities.
(2) The commander of such command shall be responsible for, and shall have the authority to conduct, the following functions relating to special operations activities (whether or not relating to the special operations command):
(A) Developing strategy, doctrine, and tactics.
(B) Preparing and submitting to the Secretary of Defense program recommendations and budget proposals for special operations forces and for other forces assigned to the special operations command.
(C) Exercising authority, direction, and control over the expenditure of funds—
(i) for forces assigned to the special operations command; and
(ii) for special operations forces assigned to unified combatant commands other than the special operations command, with respect to all matters covered by paragraph (4) and, with respect to a matter not covered by paragraph (4), to the extent directed by the Secretary of Defense.
(D) Training assigned forces.
(E) Conducting specialized courses of instruction for commissioned and noncommissioned officers.
(F) Validating requirements.
(G) Establishing priorities for requirements.
(H) Ensuring the interoperability of equipment and forces.
(I) Formulating and submitting requirements for intelligence support.
(J) Monitoring the promotions, assignments, retention, training, and professional military education of special operations forces officers.
(3) The commander of the special operations command shall be responsible for—
(A) ensuring the combat readiness of forces assigned to the special operations command; and
(B) monitoring the preparedness to carry out assigned missions of special operations forces assigned to unified combatant commands other than the special operations command.
(4)
(A) The commander of the special operations command shall be responsible for, and shall have the authority to conduct, the following:
(i) Development and acquisition of special operations-peculiar equipment.
(ii) Acquisition of special operations-peculiar material, supplies, and services.
(B) Subject to the authority, direction, and control of the Secretary of Defense, the commander of the command, in carrying out his functions under subparagraph (A), shall have authority to exercise the functions of the head of an agency under chapter 137 of this title.
(C)
(i) The staff of the commander shall include a command acquisition executive, who shall be responsible for the overall supervision of acquisition matters for the special operations command. The command acquisition executive shall have the authority to—
(I) negotiate memoranda of agreement with the military departments to carry out the acquisition of equipment, material, supplies, and services described in subparagraph (A) on behalf of the command;
(II) supervise the acquisition of equipment, material, supplies, and services described in subparagraph (A), regardless of whether such acquisition is carried out by the command, or by a military department pursuant to a delegation of authority by the command;
(III) represent the command in discussions with the military departments regarding acquisition programs for which the command is a customer; and
(IV) work with the military departments to ensure that the command is appropriately represented in any joint working group or integrated product team regarding acquisition programs for which the command is a customer.
(ii) The command acquisition executive of the special operations command shall be responsible to the commander for rapidly delivering acquisition solutions to meet validated special operations-peculiar requirements, subordinate to the Defense Acquisition Executive in matters of acquisition, subject to the same oversight as the service acquisition executives, and included on the distribution list for acquisition directives and instructions of the Department of Defense.
(D) The staff of the commander shall include an inspector general who shall conduct internal audits and inspections of purchasing and contracting actions through the special operations command and such other inspector general functions as may be assigned.
(f) Budget.— In addition to the activities of a combatant command for which funding may be requested under section 166 (b) of this title, the budget proposal of the special operations command shall include requests for funding for—
(1) development and acquisition of special operations-peculiar equipment; and
(2) acquisition of other material, supplies, or services that are peculiar to special operations activities.
(g) Intelligence and Special Activities.— This section does not constitute authority to conduct any activity which, if carried out as an intelligence activity by the Department of Defense, would require a notice to the Select Committee on Intelligence of the Senate and the Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence of the House of Representatives under title V of the National Security Act of 1947 (50 U.S.C. 413 et seq.). [1]
(h) Regulations.— The Secretary of Defense shall prescribe regulations for the activities of the special operations command. Such regulations shall include authorization for the commander of such command to provide for operational security of special operations forces and activities.
(i) Identification of Special Operations Forces.—
(1) Subject to paragraph (2), for the purposes of this section special operations forces are those forces of the armed forces that—
(A) are identified as core forces or as augmenting forces in the Joint Chiefs of Staff Joint Strategic Capabilities Plan, Annex E, dated December 17, 1985;
(B) are described in the Terms of Reference and Conceptual Operations Plan for the Joint Special Operations Command, as in effect on April 1, 1986; or
(C) are designated as special operations forces by the Secretary of Defense.
(2) The Secretary of Defense, after consulting with the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and the commander of the special operations command, may direct that any force included within the description in paragraph (1)(A) or (1)(B) shall not be considered as a special operations force for the purposes of this section.
(j) Special Operations Activities.— For purposes of this section, special operations activities include each of the following insofar as it relates to special operations:
(1) Direct action.
(2) Strategic reconnaissance.
(3) Unconventional warfare.
(4) Foreign internal defense.
(5) Civil affairs.
(6) Military information support operations.
(7) Counterterrorism.
(8) Humanitarian assistance.
(9) Theater search and rescue.
(10) Such other activities as may be specified by the President or the Secretary of Defense.
(k) Budget Support for Reserve Elements.—
(1) Before the budget proposal for the special operations command for any fiscal year is submitted to the Secretary of Defense, the commander of the command shall consult with the Secretaries of the military departments concerning funding for reserve component special operations units. If the Secretary of a military department does not concur in the recommended level of funding with respect to any such unit that is under the jurisdiction of the Secretary, the commander shall include with the budget proposal submitted to the Secretary of Defense the views of the Secretary of the military department concerning such funding.
(2) Before the budget proposal for a military department for any fiscal year is submitted to the Secretary of Defense, the Secretary of that military department shall consult with the commander of the special operations command concerning funding for special operations forces in the military personnel budget for a reserve component in that military department. If the commander of that command does not concur in the recommended level of funding with respect to reserve component special operations units, the Secretary shall include with the budget proposal submitted to the Secretary of Defense the views of the commander of that command.


[1]  See References in Text note below.

Source

(Added Pub. L. 99–500, § 101(c) [title IX, § 9115(b)(1)], Oct. 18, 1986, 100 Stat. 1783–82, 1783–122, and Pub. L. 99–591, § 101(c) [title IX, § 9115(b)(1)], Oct. 30, 1986, 100 Stat. 3341–82, 3341–122; Pub. L. 99–661, div. A, title XIII, § 1311(b)(1),Nov. 14, 1986, 100 Stat. 3983; amended Pub. L. 100–180, div. A, title XII, § 1211(d),Dec. 4, 1987, 101 Stat. 1156; Pub. L. 100–456, div. A, title VII, § 712,Sept. 29, 1988, 102 Stat. 1997; Pub. L. 102–88, title VI, § 602(c)(3),Aug. 14, 1991, 105 Stat. 444; Pub. L. 103–337, div. A, title IX, § 925,Oct. 5, 1994, 108 Stat. 2832; Pub. L. 110–181, div. A, title VIII, § 810,Jan. 28, 2008, 122 Stat. 217; Pub. L. 112–81, div. A, title X, § 1086(1),Dec. 31, 2011, 125 Stat. 1603; Pub. L. 113–66, div. A, title IX, § 903,Dec. 26, 2013, 127 Stat. 816.)
References in Text

The National Security Act of 1947, referred to in subsec. (g), is act July 26, 1947, ch. 343, 61 Stat. 495, which was formerly classified principally to chapter 15 (§ 401 et seq.) of Title 50, War and National Defense, prior to editorial reclassification in chapter 44 (§ 3001 et seq.) of Title 50. Title V of the Act is now classified generally to subchapter III (§ 3091 et seq.) of chapter 44 of Title 50. For complete classification of this Act to the Code, see Tables.
Codification

Pub. L. 99–591is a corrected version of Pub. L. 99–500.
Pub. L. 99–661and Pub. L. 99–500added identical sections.
Amendments

2013—Subsec. (e)(4)(C)(ii). Pub. L. 113–66inserted “responsible to the commander for rapidly delivering acquisition solutions to meet validated special operations-peculiar requirements, subordinate to the Defense Acquisition Executive in matters of acquisition, subject to the same oversight as the service acquisition executives, and” after “shall be”.
2011—Subsec. (j)(6). Pub. L. 112–81added par. (6) and struck out former par. (6) which read as follows: “Psychological operations.”
2008—Subsec. (e)(4)(C), (D). Pub. L. 110–181added subpar. (C) and redesignated former subpar. (C) as (D).
1994—Subsec. (k). Pub. L. 103–337added subsec. (k).
1991—Subsec. (g). Pub. L. 102–88substituted “would require a notice” for “would require—
“(1) a finding under section 662 of the Foreign Assistance Act of 1961 (22 U.S.C. 2422); or
“(2) a notice” and “title V of the National Security Act of 1947 (50 U.S.C. 413 et seq.)” for “section 501(a)(1) of the National Security Act of 1947 (50 U.S.C. 413)”.
1988—Subsec. (e). Pub. L. 100–456revised and restated subsec. (e). Prior to amendment, subsec. (e) read as follows:
“(1) In addition to the authority prescribed in section 164 (c) of this title, the commander of the special operations command shall be responsible for, and shall have the authority to conduct, all affairs of such command relating to special operations activities, including the following functions:
“(A) Developing strategy, doctrine, and tactics.
“(B) Training assigned forces.
“(C) Conducting specialized courses of instruction for commissioned and noncommissioned officers.
“(D) Validating requirements.
“(E) Establishing priorities for requirements.
“(F) Ensuring combat readiness.
“(G) Developing and acquiring special operations-peculiar equipment and acquiring special operations-peculiar material, supplies, and services.
“(H) Ensuring the interoperability of equipment and forces.
“(I) Formulating and submitting requirements for intelligence support.
“(J) Monitoring the promotions, assignments, retention, training, and professional military education of special operations forces officers.
“(2) The commander of such command shall be responsible for monitoring the preparedness of special operations forces assigned to other unified combatant commands to carry out assigned missions.
“(3) Subject to the authority, direction, and control of the Secretary of Defense, the commander of the command, in carrying out his functions under paragraph (1)(G), shall have authority to exercise the functions of the head of an agency under chapter 137 of this title. The staff of the commander shall include an inspector general who shall conduct internal audits and inspections of purchasing and contracting actions through the special operations command and such other inspector general functions as may be assigned.”
1987—Subsec. (e)(3). Pub. L. 100–180added par. (3).
Effective Date

Pub. L. 99–500, § 101(c) [title IX, § 9115(i)], Oct. 18, 1986, 100 Stat. 1783–82, 1783–125, Pub. L. 99–591, § 101(c) [title IX, § 9115(i)], Oct. 30, 1986, 100 Stat. 3341–82, 3341–125, and Pub. L. 99–661, div. A, title XIII, § 1311(i),Nov. 14, 1986, 100 Stat. 3986, provided that: “Section 167 of title 10, United States Code (as added by subsection (b)), shall be implemented not later than 180 days after the date of the enactment of this Act [Oct. 18, 1986].”
Memoranda of Agreement on Identification and Dedication of Enabling Capabilities of General Purpose Forces to Fulfill Certain Requirements of Special Operations Forces

Pub. L. 112–81, div. A, title IX, § 904,Dec. 31, 2011, 125 Stat. 1533, provided that:
“(a) Requirement.—By not later than 180 days after the date of the enactment of this Act [Dec. 31, 2011] and annually thereafter, each Secretary of a military department shall enter into a memorandum of agreement with the Commander of the United States Special Operations Command that identifies or establishes processes and associated milestones by which numbers and types of enabling capabilities of the general purpose forces of the Armed Forces under the jurisdiction of such Secretary can be identified and dedicated to fulfill the training and operational requirements of special operations forces under the United States Special Operations Command.
“(b) Format.—Such agreements may be accomplished in an annex to existing memoranda of agreement or through separate memoranda of agreement.”
Counterterrorism Operational Briefing Requirement

Pub. L. 112–81, div. A, title X, § 1031,Dec. 31, 2011, 125 Stat. 1570, required the Secretary of Defense, beginning not later than March 1, 2012, to provide to the Committees on Armed Services and Appropriations of the Senate and the House of Representatives quarterly briefings outlining Department of Defense counterterrorism operations and related activities involving special operations forces, prior to repeal by Pub. L. 113–66, div. A, title X, § 1042(b),Dec. 26, 2013, 127 Stat. 857.
Quarterly Reports on Use of Combat Mission Requirements Funds

Pub. L. 111–383, div. A, title I, § 123,Jan. 7, 2011, 124 Stat. 4158, as amended by Pub. L. 112–81, div. A, title I, § 145,Dec. 31, 2011, 125 Stat. 1326, provided that:
“(a) Quarterly Reports Required.—
“(1) In general.—Not later than 30 days after the end of each fiscal quarter, the commander of the United States Special Operations Command shall submit to the congressional defense committees [Committees on Armed Services and Appropriations of the Senate and the House of Representatives] a report on the use of Combat Mission Requirements funds during the preceding fiscal quarter.
“(2) Combat mission requirements funds.—For purposes of this section, Combat Mission Requirements funds are amounts available to the Department of Defense for Defense-wide procurement in the Combat Mission Requirements subaccount of the Defense-wide Procurement account.
“(b) Elements.—Each report under subsection (a) shall include, for the fiscal quarter covered by such report, the following:
“(1) The balance of the Combat Mission Requirements subaccount at the beginning of such quarter.
“(2) The balance of the Combat Mission Requirements subaccount at the end of such quarter.
“(3) Any transfer of funds into or out of the Combat Mission Requirements subaccount during such quarter, including the source of any funds transferred into the subaccount, and the objective of any transfer of funds out of the subaccount.
“(4) A description of any requirement—
“(A) approved for procurement using Combat Mission Requirements funds during such quarter; or
“(B) procured using such funds during such quarter.
“(5) With respect to each description of a requirement under paragraph (4), the amount of Combat Mission Requirements funds committed to the procurement or approved procurement of such requirement.
“(6) A table setting forth the Combat Mission Requirements approved during the fiscal year in which such report is submitted and the two preceding fiscal years, including for each such Requirement—
“(A) the title of such Requirement;
“(B) the date of approval of such Requirement; and
“(C) the amount of funding approved for such Requirement, and the source of such approved funds.
“(7) A statement of the amount of any unspent Combat Mission Requirements funds from the fiscal year in which such report is submitted and the two preceding fiscal years.
“(c) Form.—Each report under subsection (a) shall be submitted in unclassified form, but may include a classified annex.”
Resources for CINCSOF

Pub. L. 100–180, div. A, title XII, § 1211(b),Dec. 4, 1987, 101 Stat. 1155, as amended by Pub. L. 104–106, div. A, title IX, § 903(f)(5),Feb. 10, 1996, 110 Stat. 402; Pub. L. 104–201, div. A, title IX, § 901,Sept. 23, 1996, 110 Stat. 2617, provided that: “The Secretary of Defense shall provide sufficient resources for the commander of the unified combatant command for special operations forces established pursuant to section 167 of title 10, United States Code, to carry out his duties and responsibilities, including particularly his duties and responsibilities relating to the following functions:
“(1) Developing and acquiring special operations-peculiar equipment and acquiring special operations-peculiar material, supplies, and services.
“(2) Providing advice and assistance to the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Special Operations and Low Intensity Conflict in the Assistant Secretary’s overall supervision of the preparation and justification of the program recommendations and budget proposals for special operations forces.
“(3) Managing assigned resources from the major force program category for special operations forces of the Five-Year Defense Plan of the Department of Defense (as required to be created pursuant to subsection (e)).”
Major Force Program Category; Program and Budget Execution; Grade for Commanders of Certain Area Special Operations Commands

Pub. L. 102–484, div. A, title IX, § 936(a), (b),Oct. 23, 1992, 106 Stat. 2479, provided that, during the period beginning on Feb. 1, 1993, and ending on Feb. 1, 1995, the provisions of Pub. L. 99–661, § 1311(e), set out below, would apply as if the Secretary of Defense had designated the United States Southern Command and the United States Central Command for the purposes of that section, and required the Secretary of Defense to submit to Congress a report setting forth the Secretary’s recommendations for the grade structure for the special operations forces component commander for each unified command not later than Mar. 1, 1994.
Pub. L. 100–180, div. A, title XII, § 1211(e),Dec. 4, 1987, 101 Stat. 1156, directed that the major force program category for special operations forces of the Five-Year Defense Plan of the Department of Defense created pursuant to Pub. L. 99–661, § 1311(c), set out below, was to be created not later than 30 days after Dec. 4, 1987, and required the Secretary of Defense to submit to committees of Congress on such date a report explaining the program recommendations and budget proposals included in such category and a certification that all program recommendations and budget proposals for special operations forces had been included.
Pub. L. 99–661, div. A, title XIII, § 1311(c)–(e), Nov. 14, 1986, 100 Stat. 3985, 3986, provided that:
“(c) Major Force Program Category.—The Secretary of Defense shall create for the special operations forces a major force program category for the Five-Year Defense Plan of the Department of Defense. The Assistant Secretary of Defense for Special Operations and Low Intensity Conflict, with the advice and assistance of the commander of the special operations command, shall provide overall supervision of the preparation and justification of program recommendations and budget proposals to be included in such major force program category.
“(d) Program and Budget Execution.—To the extent that there is authority to revise programs and budgets approved by Congress for special operations forces, such authority may be exercised only by the Secretary of Defense, after consulting with the commander of the special operations command.
“(e) Grade for Commanders of Certain Area Special Operations Commands.—The commander of the special operations command of the United States European Command, the United States Pacific Command, and any other unified combatant command that the Secretary of Defense may designate for the purposes of this section shall be of general or flag officer grade.”
[Identical provisions were contained in section 101 (c) [§ 9115(c)–(e)] of Pub. L. 99–500and Pub. L. 99–591, which was repealed by Pub. L. 102–484, div. A, title IX, § 936(c),Oct. 23, 1992, 106 Stat. 2479.]
Report on Capabilities of United States To Conduct Special Operations and Engage in Low Intensity Conflicts

Pub. L. 99–500, § 101(c) [title IX, § 9115(h)(2)], Oct. 18, 1986, 100 Stat. 1783–82, 1783–125, Pub. L. 99–591, § 101(c) [title IX, § 9115(h)(2)], Oct. 30, 1986, 100 Stat. 3341–82, 3341–125, and Pub. L. 99–661, div. A, title XIII, § 1311(h)(2),Nov. 14, 1986, 100 Stat. 3986, required President, not later than one year after the date of enactment, to transmit to Congress a report on capabilities of United States to conduct special operations and engage in low intensity conflicts, the report to include a description of deficiencies in such capabilities, actions being taken throughout executive branch to correct such deficiencies, the principal low intensity conflict threats to interests of United States, and the actions taken and to be taken to implement this section.

 

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