Harriet Alexander / The Guardian – 2013-07-17 00:09:08
LONDON (July 11, 2013) — As the British government examines whether it could maintain Trident’s base in an independent Scotland, here is a look at some of the major military bases on foreign soil — excluding Afghanistan — around the world.
The Faslane base, on Gare Loch, is home to the UK’s Trident nuclear submarine base.
Two bases, at Akrotiri and Dhekelia, were retained as British sovereign territory with independence in 1960. The bases are home to army, navy and RAF personnel.
British forces will have all left Germany by 2020. However, there remains a significant presence, with the Rhine Garrison as the head quarters.
The US also has 48,000 soldiers in Germany.
The army has had a presence on the Rock for over 300 years, although the last UK-based infantry battalion left in 1991. It is now home to the Royal Gibraltar Regiment, and acts as a Joint Operating Base for UK operations in the region.
An army training unit in Nanyuki, 200km north of Nairobi, has 56 permanent staff and 110 rotating staff members, who work with the troops coming in to train.
Britain also has a peace support team in Kenya, working on security sector reform and mine removal.
(6) Sierra Leone
Established in 2002 at the end of the civil war, Britain has a military advisory and training centre on the outskirts of Freetown.
A combined force of army, navy and RAF is based on the islands.
An infantry battalion and a Bell 212 helicopter flight are based in Brunei, which is used as a centre for jungle warfare training.
The training area in Alberta is equivalent in size to all the main training areas used by the British forces in the UK and Europe. Around 1000 tanks and armoured vehicles are kept there to train 7000 troops each year.
(10) South Korea
There are 28,500 American troops based in Seoul, at the Yongsan Garrison. They will move to Camp Humphreys, 40 miles south of the capital, later this year.
Okinawa is home to about half of America’s 50,000 troops stationed in Japan.
Andersen Air Force base is home to bomber crews, while nuclear submarines are also housed here.
America operates out of six RAF bases in the UK. RAF Croughton is one of the largest military communications centres in Europe, and handles 30pc of all US military traffic within Europe.
(14) Diego Garcia
A British overseas territory, the island was home to the Chagossians — who were expelled by the British between 1968 and 1973 to make way for the American base. It is now uninhabited, except for military personnel.
(15) GuantÃ¡namo Bay, Cuba
Cuba granted America complete jurisdiction and control over this remote part of the island in 1903, although Cuba retains sovereignty. It is home to the GuantÃ¡namo Bay detention camp, opened in 2002 to hold prisoners from the “War on Terror”.
Approximately 5,000 troops are stationed between three bases and the US Combined Air Operations Centre. Most American troops left Saudi Arabia in 2003, at the end of the Gulf War, and Qatar is now one of their main centres. They also have troops stationed in Bahrain (home to the Fifth Fleet), Kuwait, Oman, UAE and Yemen. Overall in the Arabian Gulf region there are reportedly 40,000 American servicemen.
Sevastopol is home to Russia’s Black Sea Fleet — the largest subunit of the navy.
Russia maintains a navy logistics centre in Tartus, with 16 ships. It is the only base outside of the former USSR. In January Russia was forced to deny that it was withdrawing its personnel from the base, and emphasise that the centre was staffed by civilians, not military staff.
Over 7,000 Russian troops are based in Tajikistan, making it their largest base in Central Asia. The present contract between Russia and Tajikistan ends in 2014, but a new agreement has been signed which remains in force until 2042.
(20) Abu Dhabi
France opened its first military base in the Gulf in 2009 — the first foreign military installation built by the French for 50 years, and its first centre in a country which was not a colony. It is home to 500 troops.
Home to France’s largest base in Africa, plus a major US base