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Photographic History Of The U.S. Navy
NavSource Online: Auxiliary Ships Photo Archive
MILITARY SEALIFT COMMAND (MSC)
PREPOSITIONING SHIPS INDEX
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MSC'S Prepositioning Program ships support the U.S. military's triad of power projection into the 21st century - sea shield, sea strike and sea basing. These ships are pre-loaded with military equipment and supplies needed for a war or other contingency. The ships are strategically positioned in key ocean areas, making it possible to deploy on short-notice the vital equipment, fuel, and supplies to initially support our military forces when ever needed.
Prepositioning ships are sub-divided into three separate categories, based on the U.S. military customers they support. The ships include: the Combat Prepositioning Force supporting the Army; the Maritime Prepositioning Force supporting the Marine Corps; and the Logistics Prepositioning Ships supporting the Navy, Defense Logistics Agency, and Air Force.
All prepositioning ships are under the operational control of MSC area commands, directly supporting the Navy's fleet commanders in chief. The actual day-to-day control of the ships is carried out by one of three MPS squadrons. Those squadrons, each commanded by a Navy captain, include: MPS Squadron One, usually located in the Mediterranean Sea and eastern Atlantic Ocean; MPS Squadron Two, usually located at Diego Garcia; MPS Squadron Three, normally in the Guam/Saipan area; and Afloat Prepositioning Squadron Four which supports Army prepositioning requirements in several regions of the world.