The Chief of Staff is the principal staff officer. He coordinates and directs the
work of the staff divisions. Some staffs have Deputy Chiefs of Staff to help the Chief of Staff.
Special staff officers aid the commander in professional, technical, and other
functional areas. They give technical, administrative, and tactical advice. They also help prepare parts
of plans, estimates, and orders.
The principal functional division of a commander's staff are the general or joint
staff. The joint staffs function is to execute the commander's responsibilities. Depending on the staff, a
subdivision may be headed by an Assistant Chief of Staff or a director. The basic functions of the
principal joint staff divisions are described in Table 1-1.
A commander may organize his staff, as needed, to carry out duties and responsibilities.
Some combatant CINCs have used this flexibility. The Space Command combines logistics (J4) and
systems integration (J6). The Transpiration Command combines the J3 and J4 functions.
Combined commands. A combined command is a force under a single commander that has
sizeable assigned or attached elements of two or more allied nations. The organizational principles
already discussed are valid for combined commands. Command authority and responsibilities of unified
commanders mostly apply to combined commanders. Because combined commands are binational or
multinational, their missions and responsibilities are set and assigned to conform to binational or