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US Military Presence Worldwide
August 26, 2008 1:35 PM   Subscribe

Mission Creep: "Bush and Rumsfeld may be history, but America's new global footprint lives on."

Here's the Table of Contents for the whole series.
posted by homunculus (33 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite

 
Meanwhile: Iraq Prime Minister Nouri Maliki demands firm withdrawal date
posted by homunculus at 1:46 PM on August 26, 2008


Overreach and hard economic times will solve the problem of too many franchises. That's what happened to the Romans, the Ottomans, the Hapsburgs, the Soviets, and Starbucks.

Mother Jones doesn't help their agument by including 1-100 and 101-1000 as a military presence; it is interesting enough just showing where the legions are garrisoned.
posted by three blind mice at 2:00 PM on August 26, 2008 [1 favorite]


I looked over this map the other day and it's pretty misleading. Pretty much every nation has some American troops, but many many many are less than a hundred or so. That's like the staff of an office. I think we over reach a lot militarily, but I'm OK with having troops in every nation we can get them in, even if they're only advisers, or there trying to be advisers. Like lobbyists for the US and US military, then if we ever need something like emergency flyover permission we've got serviceman with direct connections who can get stuff done from a different angle than our ambassadors.
posted by Science! at 2:34 PM on August 26, 2008


And as the map states maybe we've only got 30 troops stationed in a country but several thousand cycle through that country on training missions. Good. Exposing other nations' services to our well disciplined and professional troops is a very good thing. No snark, despite our numerous problems, publicized and secret - we've still got one hell of a dedicated and professional military.
posted by Science! at 2:40 PM on August 26, 2008


1-100 and 101-1000 as a military presence

How many troops does it take to run a secret prison?

The people in power have been working at this for decades. The American public looks at the current issues in election cycle time spans. It does not matter who is installed as President this November. (I am looking at you Premier Election Solutions.) This trend will continue. It is a long game and the average citizen will never realize the big picture. The Project for the New American Century will March on. The destruction of the constitution and the erosion of your civil rights will not be restored by either party. The criminals in office will not be punished and the people that put them there will become even more wealthy and powerful.

The added executive powers will not be removed and the new leader will use those to oppress you and further their agenda.
posted by Mr_Zero at 3:05 PM on August 26, 2008 [1 favorite]


What kind of ridiculousness is this?

Doesn't nearly every country in the world have 1-100 troops in almost every country of the world, or has Mother Jones forgotten that tiny little bit of peaceful occupation, the Embassy and Consulate protection troops?
posted by chimaera at 3:05 PM on August 26, 2008 [2 favorites]


we've still got one hell of a dedicated and professional military.

Who murder innocent men, women and children.
posted by dydecker at 3:10 PM on August 26, 2008


Agreed that the map is a bit misleading; it'd be nice--and a bit more practical--if one could set a lower threshold for troop numbers.
posted by youarenothere at 3:18 PM on August 26, 2008


How many troops does it take to run a secret prison?

Zero. They're all private contractors.
posted by blue_beetle at 3:22 PM on August 26, 2008 [8 favorites]


This trend will continue. It is a long game and the average citizen will never realize the big picture. The Project for the New American Century will March on. The destruction of the constitution and the erosion of your civil rights will not be restored by either party. The criminals in office will not be punished and the people that put them there will become even more wealthy and powerful.

The added executive powers will not be removed and the new leader will use those to oppress you and further their agenda.


Did a little birdie tell you this? Hell of a crystal ball you've got there dude.

we've still got one hell of a dedicated and professional military.
Who murder innocent men, women and children.


There are murderers everywhere, including in the military - I fail to see your point.
posted by The Light Fantastic at 3:29 PM on August 26, 2008


we've still got one hell of a dedicated and professional military.

which allows the national guard to stay home and deal with emergencies. like hurricanes. and floods. and stuff.
posted by quonsar at 3:29 PM on August 26, 2008 [2 favorites]


Did a little birdie tell you this? Hell of a crystal ball you've got there dude.

You don't need a crystal ball. Read up on PNAC. It is no secret what their goals are.
posted by Mr_Zero at 3:38 PM on August 26, 2008


so, Science!, you'd be okay if, say, Egypt wanted to have troops in Vermont, just in case they "ever need something like emergency flyover permission [they]'ve got serviceman with direct connections who can get stuff done from a different angle than [their] ambassadors" (Or Russian troops in Chicago, or how about Mexicans and Colombian bases in Phoenix-- that might actually be useful!)
posted by nax at 3:56 PM on August 26, 2008


nax: "so, Science!, you'd be okay if, say, Egypt wanted to have troops in Vermont, just in case they "ever need something like emergency flyover permission [they]'ve got serviceman with direct connections who can get stuff done from a different angle than [their] ambassadors" (Or Russian troops in Chicago, or how about Mexicans and Colombian bases in Phoenix-- that might actually be useful!)"

You know what, if it was in our long term national interests to have Egyptian troops stationed on a relatively permanent basis in Vermont, yeah I'd be OK with that. Say we believed that country X might be needed to fight along side us in an unfamiliar environment, Vermont may indeed be a good place to train them in something like winter warfare tactics. Fine, permanently station a hundred troops or so to help facilitate the training of other troops from the country and prevent problems with those troops adapting to US culture. We routinely bring troops into the US and train them, and we have troops serving with other nations, even flying their helicopters.
posted by Science! at 4:16 PM on August 26, 2008 [2 favorites]


How can you have mission creep when your mission started out as "Take over the world, bwahahahaaaaaa"?
posted by pompomtom at 4:29 PM on August 26, 2008 [4 favorites]


There are murderers everywhere, including in the military - I fail to see your point.

Yeah, bad apples, etc. Must have been a lot of bad apples because the death toll in Iraq is over a million now.

The US military doesn't torture either - of course you get your occasional inbred from Oklahoma trying out moves they see in wrestling videos on prisoners, but that's nothing to do with the military, is it?

My point, since you're asking, is that billions of people around the world see the US military as a malign force which systematically puts US interests first and foremost and shows little regard or interest in the wellbeing of the countries/satellite states it is occupying. Look at the posts from Science as an example of this arrogant attitude: every single word is about what is good for the US and no consideration at all is given for what might be good for anyone else.
posted by dydecker at 4:42 PM on August 26, 2008 [1 favorite]


7 US troops in Kyrgyzstan? Bullshit. 0 bases? What's that massive annex to Bishkek airport about then, and the 10+ US Air Force planes always on the tarmac?
posted by Meatbomb at 5:31 PM on August 26, 2008


Are there any foreign troops stationed in the United States? (Other than Canadians at NORAD, or embassy attaches)
posted by Rumple at 5:32 PM on August 26, 2008


"so, Science!, you'd be okay if, say, Egypt wanted to have troops in Vermont"

Well, I'm not technically Science! but... twelve of them? Sure! They'd probably be fun to go drinking with. And if they got too blitzed and decided to take over America, I'm pretty sure the local PD could handle them.

It's when you get up into that thousands range that you start to notice that they're overpaid, oversexed and over here.
posted by Naberius at 5:46 PM on August 26, 2008


What do the two US troops in Madagascar do?

And I must confess, I was unaware that there were over 40,000 US troops stationed in Canada up until the Carter administration.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 5:46 PM on August 26, 2008


This is refried Noam Chomsky, with a bit of 2.0 window dressing.
posted by KokuRyu at 6:33 PM on August 26, 2008 [1 favorite]


What do the two US troops in Madagascar do?

Embassy guards?
posted by Cyrano at 6:56 PM on August 26, 2008


Doesn't nearly every country in the world have 1-100 troops in almost every country of the world, or has Mother Jones forgotten that tiny little bit of peaceful occupation, the Embassy and Consulate protection troops?

Are you sure? I haven't spent much time googling, but I only seemed to find references to US embassies and consulates having troops. I don't think it's normal. Presumably some of the more imperial countries use troops also, but I'd be surprised if, say, the New Zealand embassy in say, Germany, had anything even approaching airport security, let alone a military presence. I may be wrong, but I'd be surprised.
posted by -harlequin- at 6:58 PM on August 26, 2008


I don't think the US is necessarily unique in using troops to protect embassies, but it's highly unusual. Australia only posts 80 ADF troops to Baghdad, as far as I am aware.
posted by wilful at 11:13 PM on August 26, 2008


(oh, forgot to mention defence attach├ęs, but they're different.)
posted by wilful at 11:15 PM on August 26, 2008


having faced US marines on the street outside the US embassy compound in my passport country of birth asking me to 'move along now' while toting their big guns, their Aviator Raybans and their uber patriotic attitude that their turf must be protected from the natives, is it any wonder that there's so much love and affection for said troops in said countries
posted by infini at 11:26 PM on August 26, 2008 [1 favorite]


Militarism and a Unipolar world
posted by infini at 11:26 PM on August 26, 2008


but I'd be surprised if, say, the New Zealand embassy in say, Germany, had anything even approaching airport security, let alone a military presence.

Of course, if the New Zealand embassy in Germany did get into trouble they'll have GS9 backing them up. Or the SAS for their embassy in England, etc., etc...

Security presence is probably largely symbolic (and, let's be honest, a tripwire in most cases,) but it would be a little disingenuous to pretend the little guys didn't rely on the protection of the big guys, and that the big guys didn't have greater security concerns.
posted by Cyrano at 11:29 PM on August 26, 2008


I haven't read every word of the articles, but it seems like they're using the word "troop" where perhaps "uniformed personnel" might be a less pejorative term. I'm not sure if it's inaccurate or not, but talking about, say, "11 troops" in New Zealand, does rather conjure up visions of fatigues and assault rifles rather than class A's and attache cases.

I think if our hypothetical Egyptians wants that sort of presence here we could only be better for it. We could prolly even organise to have someone meet their flight at the airport and give them a lift to their leased office space. But if they want to parachute in battalion at night and start digging fox holes, yes I think I'd just as soon they stayed at home.
posted by adamt at 11:38 PM on August 26, 2008


Are there any foreign troops stationed in the United States? (Other than Canadians at NORAD, or embassy attaches)

So it would appear, gol darn it.
posted by IndigoJones at 6:21 AM on August 27, 2008


it would be a little disingenuous to pretend the little guys didn't rely on the protection of the big guys, and that the big guys didn't have greater security concerns.

Exactly. The rest of you small fry countries need to remember this. America keeps its troops on your doorstep to protect us all from the aliens.
posted by saulgoodman at 6:46 AM on August 27, 2008


Bush quietly seeks to make war powers permanent, by declaring indefinite state of war
posted by homunculus at 1:05 PM on August 30, 2008


Going on an Imperial Bender: How the U.S. Garrisons the Planet and Doesn't Even Notice
posted by homunculus at 4:49 PM on September 4, 2008


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