Analysing a country’s military presence overseas is a good way to gauge its global influence.
How do the permanent members of the UN Security Council measure up when it comes to bases abroad? Charting the geographic spread of military power can prove difficult due to temporary deployments and the rapid pace of world affairs.
However, when it comes to a permanent military presence abroad, nowhere comes close to the United States. The US military has troops stationed in no less than 30 countries from Guantanamo Bay in Cuba to Djibouti on the Horn of Africa. Russia is aggressively reasserting its influence worldwide and primarily maintains bases in Central Asia and Eastern Europe in addition to its naval facility in Tartus, Syria.
China has rapidly risen as an economic and military power. Even though it boasts the world’s largest army, it has no troops permanently based overseas. However, it is believed that China will establish a permanent base in Obock in Djibouti at some stage in the future.
This chart shows UN Security Council members with a permanent overseas military presence in 2015.
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