National Command Authority (United States)

National Command Authority (NCA) is a term that was used by the Department of Defense of the United States of America to refer to the ultimate source of lawful military orders.

The NCA was first alluded to in a 1960 Department of Defense document. It included at least the president of the United States as commander-in-chief and sometimes the vice president, secretary of defense, or the Joint Chiefs of Staff, and/or their alternates and successors. The term has no statutory or constitutional basis and was replaced in 2002 in favor of explicitly referring to the president and/or the secretary of defense.[1][2]

The term also refers to communications with the commanding officers of the Unified Combatant Commands to put U.S. forces into action.

Authorization of a nuclear or strategic attackEdit

Only the president can direct the use of nuclear weapons by U.S. Armed Forces, through plans like OPLAN 8010-12. The president has unilateral authority as commander-in-chief to order that nuclear weapons be used for any reason at any time. [3][4][5][6]

See alsoEdit

Notes and referencesEdit

  1. ^ Abrams, Herbert L. (1994). The President Has Been Shot: Confusion, Disability, & the 25th Amendment. Stanford, California: Stanford University Press. p. 323. ISBN 0-8047-2325-7. Retrieved November 9, 2020.
  2. ^ Croddy, Eric A.; Wirtz, James J.; Larsen, Jeffrey A. (2005). Weapons of Mass Destruction: An Encyclopedia of Worldwide Policy, Technology, and History. Santa Barbara, California: ABC-CLIO. p. 66. ISBN 1-85109-490-3. Retrieved November 9, 2020.
  3. ^ Blair, Bruce (June 11, 2016). "What Exactly Would It Mean to Have Trump's Finger on the Nuclear Button?". Politico Magazine. Retrieved 2019-06-30.
  4. ^ Broad, William J.; Sanger, David E. (August 4, 2016). "Debate Over Trump's Fitness Raises Issue of Checks on Nuclear Power". The New York Times. p. A1. Retrieved October 2, 2016.
  5. ^ Burns, Robert (2017-11-13). "Could anyone stop Trump from launching nukes? The answer: No". Associated Press. Retrieved 2019-06-30.
  6. ^ Stanton, Zack (2017-11-14). "Don't Count on the Cabinet to Stop a Trump-Ordered Nuclear Strike". Politico Magazine. Retrieved 2019-06-30.