Although it is difficult to give specific numbers to US military personnel abroad, various data from the US Department of Defense indicate that there are currently 150,000 and 560 soldiers serving in foreign countries, but this number does not include many countries where Washington does not reveal this, due the embarrassment it may cause her or the host State.
The US military presence is concentrated in East Asia, especially in Japan (about 40,000 troops) and South Korea (28,000).
On the European continent, Germany still has the largest US military presence (more than 34,000 troops) since the end of the Second World War and during the Cold War. Italy (11700), Britain (9000) and Spain (2,500) are in the following ranks.
The former US President Barack Obama has promised to reduce the US military presence around the world, and implemented a policy of withdrawing some troops from Afghanistan and Iraq in particular, but the US military presence in the Middle East remains of great importance to Washington, where there are about 35 thousand soldiers in 20 countries Of the countries of the region.
There are maps and tables published by global sites for statistical studies, including the site “Graphic Search” shows the distribution of US military around the world by adopting semi-official figures as shown below:
What are the objectives of this presence in terms of military, political and economic?
In fact, there is a brief answer to this question. It can be summarized that America seeks to impose its hegemony on the countries where its military forces are located, whether the governments of these countries are walking in their orbit or their people reject this presence.
The detailed answer to the above question can be referred to as follows:
Siege of Russia and China
America has sought to deploy its military forces in many countries loyal to Russia and China “eastern camp” in order to impose a security cordon on these two countries. It can be said that Washington has succeeded in this way in the hammering of multiple wedges between Moscow on the one hand and countries such as Georgia and Ukraine on the other.
Tighten pressure on Iran
Although America failed to impose its will on the Islamic Republic of Iran, it sought to tighten pressure on it by deploying military forces in many neighboring countries. This became clear after the invasion of America and its allies in Afghanistan in 2001 and Iraq in 2003.
It should be noted that America has many land, sea and air bases in several countries in the region, including Jordan, Turkey and the GCC.
Securing US troop deployment in times of need
The repercussions of the 1991 “Kuwait War” and its aftermath led to a major shift in the shape of the US military presence in the Middle East in two directions:
First: the expansion of military facilities provided to US forces in the bases, ports, airports, camps and centers of the vast majority of countries in the region related to America, or even some countries that do not appear to have strong political relations with them. These facilities include the use of these premises for air transport, refueling, maintenance and storage of weapons, as well as joint military exercises.
Second, the number of major military bases has increased in an unprecedented manner in the region. The importance of these bases is that they constitute semi-integrated military operations centers in support of air, land or sea combat operations, either through the actual positioning of elements of such forces or the preparation of the base for deployment in times of need. This enables US forces to manage major military operations rapidly in different directions.
Tightening the US military cordon around the region
US forces have a wide network of military facilities that allow them to “move” in some form in the territory, airspace and waters of almost all Middle Eastern countries except Iran.
The most important is the size of the actual US military presence, which is the presence of large military fleets almost permanently stationed in the waters surrounding the region, such as the American Sixth Fleet in the Mediterranean, and the American 7th Fleet, which is based in the Indian Ocean and the Arabian Sea.
The fleet includes a large number of different marine pieces including fighter aircraft carriers of different models, in addition to naval forces can be deployed when necessary according to the objectives of its presence in the region.