There are many USG organizations involved with various aspects of FMS. The below list is not all-inclusive, but does highlight some of the key players you should know about. See SAMM Section C1.3. for a more extensive description of USG responsibilities and relationships related to Security Assistance.
The United States Congress
By law, potential sales that meet certain criteria must be submitted for Congressional review over a specific time before these LOAs may be offered to foreign purchasers. The Congressional Notification process is described in SAMM Section C5.5. We’ll also discuss in more detail later in this guide.
The Department of State (DoS)
The Secretary of State is responsible for management and supervision of all aspects of U.S. Security Cooperation programs - including FMS. The DoS determines whether (and when) there will be a U.S. program with, or sale to, a particular country and, if so, its size and scope.
The DOS Bureau of Political Military Affairs office of Regional Security and Arms Transfers (PM/RSAT) is the lead DoS bureau for FMS matters, including transfer approvals and the notifications that must go to the U.S. Congress before a transfer can occur.
The DoS also reviews and approves export license requests for DCS of items on the United States Munitions List (USML), which is Part 121 of the International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR). The DOS Directorate Defense Trade Controls (DDTC) processes requests for commercial licenses for DCS. Defense articles and services sold through the FMS process do not require commercial export licenses - although a similar process of review is used.
The Department of Defense (DoD)
The Secretary of Defense establishes military requirements and implements programs to transfer defense articles and services to eligible foreign countries and international organizations. This is done in close coordination with the DoS.
The Under Secretary of Defense for Policy (USD(P)) serves as the principal staff assistant and advisor to the Secretary of Defense on Security Cooperation matters.
The Director of the Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA) reports to the USD(P) and administers and supervises the execution of all Security Cooperation programs for the DoD. DSCA assigns Country Portfolio Directors (CPDs) responsibility for all Security Cooperation activities for a country (or several countries). The CPD is always a good place to start with any questions you have - whether specifically about your country’s program or about Security Cooperation in general. The CPD can also locate the appropriate policy and process experts within DSCA to help you through any of these Security Cooperation programs. If you do not know who your CPD is, you can contact DSCA to find out.
The Defense Technology Security Administration (DTSA) is the DoD Agency responsible for formulating DoD positions on proposed exports. DTSA provides those positions to the DoS as part of the DoS decision-making process when considering the approval or disapproval of a proposed sale of military equipment - whether FMS or DCS. When developing a position on the potential sale of a particular item to a foreign country, DTSA works in close coordination with experts in the Army, Navy, Air Force, and DSCA.
Military Departments (MILDEPs). In coordination with DSCA and the USD(P), the MILDEPs serve as advisors to the Secretary of Defense on all Security Cooperation matters related to their respective Departments (Army, Navy, and Air Force). They conduct military education and training and sales of defense articles and defense services to eligible foreign countries and international organizations in accordance with the AECA, FAA and policies established by the Director, DSCA. They also provide technical information and data on weapons systems, tactics, doctrine, training, capabilities, logistic support, price, source, availability, and lead-time for a proposed FMS sale. Each MILDEP is primarily responsible for building and maintaining capability for U.S. military forces. As an added responsibility, the MILDEPs execute foreign sales and training as FMS “Implementing Agencies”. For this, they each have organizations dedicated to FMS and to international training.
Department of the Army
The Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Army for Defense Exports and Cooperation (DASA [DE&C), located in the Washington DC area, leads, manages, resources, and directs policy and strategy for the conduct of select elements of the Army’s global security cooperation activities, including: FMS; international training and education; Armaments Cooperation (AC); non-Special Access Program (SAP) technology transfer; export policy; and the Army Munitions Control Program (MCP).
The U.S. Army Security Assistance Command (USASAC), in Huntsville, Alabama, manages all Army FMS materiel and defense services except those managed by other Army Implementing Agencies below.
The U.S. Army Training and Doctrine Command (TRADOC), Security Assistance Training Field Activity (SATFA), at Fort Eustis, Virginia, is the U.S. Army’s agent for Army institutional international education and training. SATFA manages international partner training programs and serves as the focal point for all Army institutional Security Cooperation training programs.
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is the U.S. Army’s agent for FMS construction and related design services.
The Office of the Surgeon General of the U.S. Army / U.S. Army Medical Command (OTSG/MEDCOM) is the U.S. Army’s agent for FMS medical materiel and medical training. OTSG/MEDCOM also provides institutional and programmatic support for global health engagement activities.
Department of the Navy
The Navy International Programs Office (IPO), in Washington, DC, is responsible for providing policy oversight of all Navy, Marine Corps and Coast Guard Security Cooperation programs. Navy IPO assists countries with determining requirements, helps in the drafting of LORs, and has responsibility for drafting LOAs in coordination with the various systems commands (Sea Systems, Air Systems, etc.).
The Naval Education and Training Security Assistance Field Activity (NETSAFA) is the Navy’s agent for Navy international education and training. It coordinates and supplies training support to foreign governments and serves as the focal point for all Navy Security Cooperation training programs.
The Headquarters, U.S. Coast Guard, International Affairs Staff for Security Assistance and International Training (G-CI) coordinates Coast Guard Security Cooperation policy and directs the performance of Coast Guard Security Cooperation programs on behalf of the Commandant of the Coast Guard. Under agreement between the Coast Guard and the Navy, Navy IPO provides support to Coast Guard G-CI in the planning and execution of Security Cooperation, to include FMS.
The Marine Corps International Program Office plans, coordinates, implements, and executes all Marine Corps related Security Cooperation acquisition and logistics matters for ground equipment. This includes review of technology transfer and comparative technology programs, international agreements and cooperation, disclosure of classified information requests, and technical data packages to provide military assistance to friendly foreign governments.
The Marine Corps Security Cooperation Group (MCSCG) - The mission of MCSCG is to execute and enable Security Cooperation programs, training, planning, and activities in order to ensure unity of effort in support of U.S. Marine Corps and Regional Marine Component Command (MARFOR) objectives and in coordination with the operating forces and Marine Air Ground Task Force (s).
The NAVSUP Weapon Systems Support International Programs Directorate (N52) is the Navy’s International Logistics Control Office (ILCO). It provides management support to Navy Program Offices, the Marine Corps, and U.S Coast Guard in the execution of Security Cooperation cases. This is performed through a cadre of subject matter experts specializing in Management Information System functionality, database integrity, case reconciliation & closure, transportation assistance, and Supply Discrepancy Report (SDR) processing
Department of the Air Force
The Deputy Under Secretary of the Air Force for International Affairs (SAF/IA), in Washington, DC, is responsible for providing policy oversight of all Air Force Security Cooperation programs, to include FMS.
The Air Force Security Assistance Command (AFSAC), in Dayton, Ohio, has management oversight responsibility for all Air Force Security Cooperation (except education and training) programs.
The Air Force Security Assistance Training Squadron (AFSAT), under the Air Education and Training Command (AETC), is the U.S. Air Force agent for Air Force international education and training. It coordinates and supplies training support to foreign governments and serves as the focal point for all Air Force Security Cooperation training programs.
MILDEP Country Program Director
The MILDEP will also have a Country Program Director responsible for overseeing that MILDEP’s Security Cooperation relationship with your country. For example, in the case of the Navy, the Navy Country Program Director would be responsible for all of your Navy FMS cases, from riverine boats to aircraft.
MILDEP Case Manager
Each MILDEP assigns a Case Manager to serve as the focal point for a given FMS case you may have with that particular MILDEP. You could have more than one Case Manager at a MILDEP if you have separate FMS cases involving different programs. For example, you might have one Navy Case Manager for a riverine boat purchase and another who manages a Navy aircraft case for your country.
There are also other, more specialized, Implementing Agencies such as the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA), the Defense Logistics Agency (DLA), the Missile Defense Agency (MDA), and the National Security Agency (NSA). A complete list of Implementing Agencies, and their contact information, can be found in SAMM Table C5.T2.
Security Cooperation Organizations (SCOs)
SCOs are comprised of U.S. military and civilian personnel the DoD stations overseas to manage Security Cooperation programs. The DoD has SCO personnel working in most of the U.S. embassies around the world. SCOs can answer many questions you have about Security Cooperation programs and the FMS process. They can also contact subject matter experts to respond to detailed or technical questions you may have. You can contact the SCO through the U.S. Embassy in your country. A list of all U.S. embassies and links to their websites can be found at http://www.usembassy.gov.
Other DoD organizations that play an important role in FMS include:
The Defense Contract Management Agency (DCMA) which performs contract administration and management, quality assurance and inspection for the DoD, including contracts that support FMS cases;
The Defense Contract Audit Agency (DCAA) which performs all necessary contract auditing for both the DoD and FMS purchases;
The Defense Finance and Accounting Service (DFAS) which is responsible for accounting, billing, disbursing and collecting functions for the FMS program.