reply to post by edaced4
It's hugely expensive to have a military base outside borders. Besides all the logistics, you have to pay to have the base there, since military bases
are also considered a natural hazard (potential).
And the US doesn't have that many bases outside the U.S.. What the US military usually does is to pay the government of a certain country the right to
have the military (being it boots, air force or navy) stationed there. For instance, the Lajes airbase in Azores (Portugal) doesn't belong to the US,
but the US pay the portuguese government a fee to use the base.
Cooperation treaties like NATO means that usually those prices are lower for western countries, and even if they don't pay to be there, they are
"invited" to have their troops stationed at those bases, like in Germany, for instance.
The rest of the bases are usually settlements between governments. The US gives certain amount of aid (monetary or weaponry), and in return it is
allowed to have military forces in foreign bases.
The fact that the US is the country with most bases outside it's territory is explained by the defense budget. The US are the only country willing to
pay that much for such an extensive defensive/offensive grid. Most other governments would never be elected or re-elected if they would spend as much
as the US does in foreign bases.
But they are not the only ones, by the way. The UK also has other bases, or uses NATO positions.
Some countries have "given" bases to the NATO forces, allowing them to stay there. Either for strategic purposes, or just for practice.
The reason why the US doesn't have any foreign military bases inside it's borders is mostly due to the fact that the US is also the most powerful
military force, especially among it's allies. Which means, there is simply no need for other countries to place troops and means in the US.
Having that said, there are foreign forces inside the US. They are simply operating with NATO, or other military cooperation treaties.
19/4/12 by Tifozi because: added last paragraph