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Goldwater-Nichols Act of 1986

UPDATING SOURCE: U.S. Code Legal Information InstituteCornell Law School

U.S. Code, Title 10, Subtitle A, Part I, Chapter 5


151. Joint Chiefs of Staff: Composition; Functions

(a) Composition. There are in the Department of Defense the Joint Chiefs of Staff, headed by the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. The Joint Chiefs of Staff consist of the following:

(1) The Chairman.
(2) The Vice Chairman.
(3) The Chief of Staff of the Army.
(4) The Chief of Naval Operations.
(5) The Chief of Staff of the Air Force.
(6) The Commandant of the Marine Corps.

(b) Function as Military Advisers.

(1) The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff is the principal military adviser to the President, the National Security Council, and the Secretary of Defense.

(2) The other members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff are military advisers to the President, the National Security Council, and the Secretary of Defense as specified in subsections (d) and (e).

(c) Consultation by Chairman.

(d) Advice and Opinions of Members Other Than Chairman.

(e) Advice on Request.
The members of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, individually or collectively, in their capacity as military advisers, shall provide advice to the President, the National Security Council, or the Secretary of Defense on a particular matter when the President, the National Security Council, or the Secretary requests such advice.

(f) Recommendations to Congress.
After first informing the Secretary of Defense, a member of the Joint Chiefs of Staff may make such recommendations to Congress relating to the Department of Defense as he considers appropriate.

(g) Meetings of JCS.

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152. Chairman: Appointment; Grade and Rank

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153. Chairman: Functions

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154. Vice Chairman

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155. Joint Staff

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