Exploring Base Politics
How Host Countries Shape the Network of U.S. Overseas Bases
This book sheds light on the mechanisms of base politics that surround US overseas military bases, comparing several countries across different regions.
Analysing cases from Japan, Greenland, Germany, Italy, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, South Korea, and Singapore, the contributors paint a detailed and complex picture of the role and impact of US bases. In times of war they project military power, and in times of peace they deter the emergence of general and latent threats. Furthermore, they are used to secure access to resources, and as a means of politically and economically influencing small and mid-size countries. From the viewpoint of the countries that host them, military bases allow the host many benefits of the US security umbrella, but can cause internal problems, including accidents and noise pollution that accompany the functioning of a base, as well as constraining their own sovereignty. Military bases do not simply serve to bring America strategic and security benefits - as symbols of the hierarchical structure of the international system, they influence power relations in the entire world.
An invaluable resource for scholars of International Relations with an interest in the practical and theoretical challenges of the US’s relationship with its allies.
Table of Contents
Introduction (Shinji Kawana and Minori Takahashi) 1: What Questions does the Study of Military Bases Pose? (Shinji Kawana) 2: Rethinking the Politics Surrounding the US Military Base in Greenland with a Focus on Non-material Factors (Minori Takahashi) 3: U.S. Bases in Italy: From a Cold War Frontier to a Hub for Power Projection (Matteo Dian) 4: Defending NATO’s Southern Flank: Spain’s Democratization, the Ending of the Cold War and the U.S. Military Presence (Shino Hateruma) 5: Domestic Environmental Policy and Status of Forces Agreement: U.S. Military Presence and New Water Pollution Risk in Germany (Keisuke Mori) 6: Why do Anti-Base Movements Occur and/or Activate? An Analysis of the Turkish Case (Kohei Imai) 7: Strategic Asset or Political Burden? U.S. Military Bases and Base Politics in Saudi Arabia (Masaki Mizobuchi) 8: Singapore’s Distinctive “Quasi-Bases”: Regional Security Environment, National Discourse, and Path-Dependence (Kei Koga) 9: Base Politics within the Framework of the U.S.-ROK Alliance Management Scheme (Tomonori Ishida) Conclusion (Shinji Kawana and Minori Takahashi)
Shinji Kawana is Associate Professor at Tokyo Institute of Technology, Japan, where he is affiliated with the Institute for Liberal Arts. He has a doctorate degree in international politics from Aoyama Gakuin University, Japan. His research has focused on base politics, U.S. bases in Japan, and the issue of military bases in Okinawa. Among his recent publications are Base Politics: The Origins of the Post-War U.S. Overseas Bases Expansion Policy (Hakuto Shobo, 2012, in Japanese) and The Rise and Fall of U.S. Military Bases 1968-1973: The Policy of Withdrawal from Mainland Japan (Keiso Shobo, 2020, in Japanese).
Minori Takahashi is Assistant Professor at Hokkaido University, Japan, where he is affiliated with the Slavic-Eurasian Research Center and the Arctic Research Center. He holds a Ph.D. in international political economy from the University of Tsukuba, Japan. His research interests include security issues and the development of living and non-living resources in the Arctic. Among his recent joint and individual publications are The Influence of Sub-state Actors on National Security: Using Military Bases to Forge Autonomy (Springer, 2019), "Autonomy and Military Bases: USAF Thule Base in Greenland as the Study Case" (Arctic Yearbook, 2019), "The Contours of the Development of Non-Living Resources in Greenland" (Polar Record, 2020), and "The Politics of Whaling and the European Union" (Senri Ethnological Studies, 2020).