Concepts & Programs HomeOrganizationOperating Forces

Operating forces are the heart of the Marine Corps. They provide the forward presence, crisis response, and combat power that our Corps makes available to CCDRs. Our Corps has established three permanent commands to provide forces to unified CCDRs:

  • U.S. Marine Corps Forces Command (MARFORCOM)
  • U.S. Marine Corps Forces, Pacific (MARFORPAC)
  • U.S. Marine Corps Forces, Special Operations Command (MARFORSOC)

The CMC retains Command of MARFORCOM and via the Joint Chiefs of Staff global force management allocation process, maintains II MEF and other unique capabilities under the Commander, MARFORCOM (COMMARFORCOM). The Commander, MARFORPAC (COMMARFORPAC) is assigned to the

Commander, U.S. Pacific Command (CDRUSPACOM), and provides I MEF and III MEF to CDRUSPACOM.

The Commander, MARFORSOC (COMMARFORSOC) is assigned to the Commander, U.S. Special Operations Command (COMUSSOCOM) and provides forces to COMUSSOCOM. These assignments reflect the peacetime disposition of our Corps’ forces.

Marine forces are allocated to the remaining geographic and functional combatant commands for contingency planning:


  • U.S. Southern Command (SOUTHCOM)
  • U.S. Northern Command (NORTHCOM)
  • U.S. European Command (EUCOM)
  • U.S. Central Command (CENTCOM)
  • U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM)
  • U.S. Strategic Command (STRATCOM)
  • U.S. Cyber Command (CYBERCOM)
  • U.S. Forces Korea (USFK) 

The following sections highlight some of these organizations and several of the other unique organizations in the operating forces.

U.S. Marine Corps Concepts & Programs