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The United States Fleet Forces Command (USFLTFORCOM) of the United States Navy is the part of the Navy responsible for operations in and around the Atlantic Ocean. Originally formed as United States Atlantic Fleet (USLANTFLT) in 1906, it has been an integral part of the defense of the United States of America for most of the 20th Century. In 2002, the Fleet comprised over 118,000 sailors and Marines serving in 186 ships and 1,300 aircraft, with an area of responsibility ranging over the Atlantic Ocean from the North Polemarker to the South Polemarker, the Caribbean Seamarker, Gulf of Mexicomarker, and the waters of the Pacific Ocean along the coasts of Central and South America (as far west as the Galapagos Islandsmarker). Its operational fleet (i.e. the collection of fighting ships) is the U.S. 2nd Fleet. USFLTFORCOM is based in Norfolk, Virginiamarker.


Roosevelt Administration

The Atlantic Fleet was established by President Theodore Roosevelt in 1906, at the same time as the Pacific Fleet, as protection for new bases in the Caribbeanmarker acquired as a result of the Spanish-American War. The Fleet was a combination of the North Atlantic Fleet and the South Atlantic Squadron.

The first commander of the fleet was Rear Admiral Robley D. Evans, who hoisted his flag in the battleship Maine on 1 January 1906. The following year, he took his 16 battleships, now dubbed the Great White Fleet, on a round-the-world cruise that lasted until 1909, a goodwill tour that also served the purpose of advertising the United States' naval strength and reach to all other nations of the globe.

The Cruiser and Transport Force served in Atlantic waters during World War I moving the American Expeditionary Force to Europe.

The Atlantic Fleet was reorganized into the Scouting Force in 1923, which was under the United States Fleet along with the Pacific Fleet.

World War II

In 1 February 1941, the Atlantic Fleet was resurrected and organized from the Patrol Force. Along with the Pacific Fleet and Asiatic Fleet, the fleet was to be under the command of a full Admiral, which jumped the fleet's commander Ernest J. King from a two-star to a four-star. King's flagship was the Texas marker.

Subsequently, the headquarters was in a rather odd assortment of ships; the Augusta , then the old wooden ship Constellationmarker, Vixen , and then Pocono . In 1948, the HQ moved into the former naval hospital at Norfolk, Virginiamarker, and has remained there ever since.

During the war Fleet commands included:

Cold War

Between 1947 and 1985, the fleet command was a concurrent appointment with the United States Atlantic Command. The Commander-in-Chief Atlantic Fleet (CINCLANTFLT) was traditionally a Navy four-star admiral who also then held the positions of Commander-in-Chief United States Atlantic Command (CINCLANT) and NATOmarker's Supreme Allied Commander Atlantic (SACLANT). But after a major reorganization of the U.S. armed forces structure following the Goldwater-Nichols Act of 1985, CINCLANFLT was separated from the two other billets. The admiral commanding the Atlantic Fleet for a time being was designated as the Deputy Commander in Chief of the Atlantic Command until 1986.

21st Century

On 1 October 2001, the Chief of Naval Operations designated Commander-in-Chief, Atlantic Fleet (CINCLANTFLT) as concurrent Commander, Fleet Forces Command (COMFLTFORCOM or CFFC for short).

On 24 October 2002, Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld directed that the title of "Commander in Chief" be reserved solely for the President of the United States. In a message to Naval Commanders in Chief, the Chief of Naval Operations directed a change of title to that of "Commander." Accordingly, the title of Commander in Chief was discontinued and the title of Commander, U.S. Atlantic Fleet (COMLANTFLT) was established. The title of Commander in Chief, U.S. Atlantic Fleet was therefore in continuous use from February 1941 through October 2002.

On 23 May 2006, the Chief of Naval Operations renamed COMLANTFLT to Commander, U.S. Fleet Forces Command (COMUSFLTFORCOM), ordered to carry out the missions currently performed by COMFLTFORCOM and serve as primary advocate for fleet personnel, training, requirements, maintenance, and operational issues, reporting administratively directly to the CNO as an Echelon 2 command. The previous title CFFC was disestablished at the same time. CUSFFC also serves as the Naval component of US Joint Forces Command (USJFCOM). CFFC is also assigned as the supporting service component commander to CDR US Northern Command as well as to CDR US Strategic Command.

On 24 July 2009, Adm. John C. Harvey, Jr. relieved Adm. Jonathan W. Greenert as Commander.

The unit's command mission is to organize, man, train, and equip Naval Forces for assignment to Unified Combatant Commanders (CCDR); Deter, detect, and defend against homeland maritime threats; Articulate Fleet warfighting and readiness requirements to the Chief of Naval Operations.

Subordinate Commands


See also


External links

Category:Norfolk, Virginia

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