Commander South Asia and Pacific Command (SAPCOM) - Summary
The crisis in Zefra caught you and your staff a bit off guard. There was a new election in Zefra a few months back, and the feeling was that things would settle a bit. But now things are getting hotter. Due to international pressure to confront the touching news stories of the problems in Zefra, the UN has backed a coalition force to re-estabish some form of normality.
The US agreed to see the UN-supported coalition joint task force deploy to Zefra and Daloon to deal with things. To get agreement at the UN Security Council the US arranged a side agreement with China, that no US forces would be part of the coalition mission. The Russian economy is in tatters so Russia offered to abstain as long as this was framed as Vladimir Putin taking a role as "peacemaker". With the China-US side agreement, China was prepared to abstain as well, allowing the UN force to deploy.
For this area, you are the main military advisor to the National Command Authority: the Commander of the South Asia and Pacific Command (SAPCOM). You have a geographic combatant command created from the southern part of what was PACOM (US Pacific Command). PACOM retains responsibility for mainland China, Taiwan, and everything north of the equator. You have military resources in the area, but you must assign their missions with care. It is clear that Zefra and the Coral Sea are potential flashpoints. Your moves will be watched with considerable attention in Washington, and in Beijing.
The US leadership has discussed various roles for the US.
The political advisors to the President are well aware of the fine balance between showing early success in Zefra and ensuring that lives of American service personnel are not risked needlessly. The fact that the presidental election in November this year (2020) gives whatever move you make strong political overtones in a domestic sense. White House advisors will be screaming for your blood if any such moves will damage the President's chances of re-election.
To accomplish missions as assigned by the National Command Authority
To provide the Commander in Chief with the best available military advice.
To deal firmly with any challenges to freedom of navigation and to US support to allies and friends, especially challenges from China
To demonstrate US leadership throughout the region.
Criteria for Decision Making
Ensure, where possible, the safety and well being of American service personnel and of US citizens.
Do what is in the best interest of American foreign policy.
Provide assistance to allies, to friendly nations, and to others... in that order.