Still one of five geographic combatant unified commands, U.S. Joint Forces Command formally took on a more functional role with the new name. It is the only unified command with both a geographic area and functional responsibilities.
Joint Forces Command gained a functional mandate to lead transformation of U.S. military joint warfighting into the 21st Century. The command's geographical responsibility was modified to more closely align with existing NATO Allied Command Atlantic's (ACLANT) area of responsibility -- both a long history of cooperation with European Allies and recent history in Central Europe indicate future military operations will not only be joint, but also combined national efforts.
The Joint Chiefs of Staff Joint Vision 2020 projects that conflicts of the future will go to the side with the right technology, applied at the right time with the right warrior. Re-designation reflected the command's commitment to experimentation with new warfighting concepts and technologies that answer the call in the Joint Chiefs vision.
Concurrently the command was charged to answer another national call to support terrorist response operations in the continental U.S. Joint Forces Command created the first domestic Joint Task Force, JTF-Civil Support, to provide military assistance to civil authorities, like the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and FBI, for consequence management of weapons of mass destruction (WMD) incidents in the United States.