PLEDGE NOW
A New String Of U.S. Military Bases Abroad?

The Pentagon has proposed a new string of military bases in Africa and the Middle East. We’ll look at what’s on the table, and where it would take the U.S. Military.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry fields an audience question after addressing a cross-service corps of U.S. service members stationed at Camp Lemonnier - the only U.S. military base in Africa - during a visit to Djibouti, Djibouti, on May 6, 2015. [State Department photo/ Public Domain]

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry fields an audience question after addressing a cross-service corps of U.S. service members stationed at Camp Lemonnier – the only U.S. military base in Africa – during a visit to Djibouti, Djibouti, on May 6, 2015. [State Department photo/ Public Domain]

The U.S. military has bases in a lot of places around the world. It wants more. It wants to build up a new string of bases in the Middle East, Southwest Asia, Africa.  In part to go after ISIS. Americans know well that U.S. troops are in Germany, Japan, South Korea. They are well-beyond too, in Bulgaria, Djibouti, Kenya, Qatar. Now the Pentagon is proposing new light-footprint bases in Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Kurdistan, Ethiopia and more. This hour On Point, we’ll look at the Pentagon’s new challenges and new dreams of more American military bases around the world.

— Tom Ashbrook

Guests

Mark Mazzetti, national security correspondent for the New York Times. Author of “The Way of the Knife.” (@MarkMazzettiNYT)

Vikram Singh, vice president of national security and international policy at the Center for American Progress. Former deputy assistant Secretary of Defense for South and Southeast Asia and former special representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan. (@VJS_Policy)

David Vine, professor of anthropology at American University. Author of “Base Nation.” (@davidsvine)

From Tom’s Reading List

New York Times: Pentagon Seeks to Knit Foreign Bases Into ISIS-Foiling Network — “As American intelligence agencies grapple with the expansion of the Islamic State beyond its headquarters in Syria, the Pentagon has proposed a new plan to the White House to build up a string of military bases in Africa, Southwest Asia and the Middle East. The bases could be used for collecting intelligence and carrying out strikes against the terrorist group’s far-flung affiliates.”

The Wall Street Journal: Obama Says Coalition Hitting Islamic State ‘Harder than Ever’ — “President Barack Obama said Monday the U.S.-led coalition against Islamic State is hitting the group “harder than ever,” while reiterating the U.S. call for other nations to contribute more to the effort. As part of his push for additional resources from coalition countries, Mr. Obama said he is sending Defense Secretary Ash Carter to the Middle East this week to try to gain new commitments from leaders in the region.”

POLITICO Magazine: Where in the World Is the U.S. Military? — “Despite recently closing hundreds of bases in Iraq and Afghanistan, the United States still maintains nearly 800 military bases in more than 70 countries and territories abroad—from giant “Little Americas” to small radar facilities. Britain, France and Russia, by contrast, have about 30 foreign bases combined. By my calculation, maintaining bases and troops overseas cost $85 to $100 billion in fiscal year 2014; the total with bases and troops in warzones is $160 to $200 billion.”

 

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