There are a great 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 SAMM describes the Congressional Notification process in SAMM Section C5.5. We’ll also discuss it further 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 of 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 Program 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. If you do not know who your CPD is, you can contact DSCA to find out. The CPD can also locate the appropriate policy and process experts within DSCA to help you through any of these security cooperation programs.
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 policies and criteria 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, has Department of the Army policy oversight responsibility for international affairs functions, to include FMS.
The U.S. Army Security Assistance Command (USASAC), in Huntsville, Alabama, provides management oversight of all Army Security Cooperation programs.
The Army Security Assistance Training Field Activity (SATFA), at Fort Monroe, Virginia, is the U.S. Army’s agent for Army international education and training. It supplies training support to foreign governments and serves as the focal point for all Army security cooperation training programs.
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.
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 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 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.
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. To continue the previous example, the Navy Country Program Director would be responsible for monitoring and facilitating the progress of both of your Navy FMS cases - riverine boats and aircraft.
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, to include security cooperation. The DoD has SCO personnel working in most of the U.S. embassies around the world. SCOs can place at your disposal the wealth of knowledge they possess within their organization, or they can contact subject matter experts in specialty areas to respond to detailed or technical questions you may have. You can contact the SCO through the Defense Attaché Office at the U.S. Embassy in your country. A list of all U.S. embassies and links to their websites can be found at https://www.usembassy.gov/.
Security Assistance Training Management Organization (SATMO)
The Security Assistance Training Management Organization (SATMO), located at Fort Bragg, NC, leads the Army Materiel Command's Security Assistance Enterprise training programs. SATMO plans, forms, prepares, deploys, sustains, and redeploys tailored CONUS-based Security Assistance teams to execute missions worldwide. SATMO advises and recommends Security Assistance related training solutions to U.S. Diplomatic Missions in order to build appropriate partner nation security sector capacity, support Theater Security Cooperation programs and strengthen U.S. global partnerships. https://usasac.army.mil/satmo/usasatmo.aspx.
U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE)
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE), headquartered in Washington, D.C., is responsible for Letter of Request receipt, Letter of Offer and Acceptance development/implementation, and the execution of facility infrastructure design and construction for Security Assistance, Building Partner Capacity, and Foreign Assistance Act Section 607 programs using FMS. USACE provides services that include, but are not limited to, planning, design, construction, and technical assistance in the areas of infrastructure, water resource management, environment and sustainability, program/project management, geospatial/engineering, and sustainment. https://www.usace.army.mil/.
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 the both DoD purchases and FMS cases;
The Defense Finance and Accounting Service (DFAS) which is responsible for accounting, billing, disbursing and collecting functions for the FMS program.