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Military Basing Abroad: Bargaining, Expectations, and Deployment
  • Michael Anthony Allen, Binghamton University State University of New York
The prospects of and decision for base deployment by a major power into another state's sovereign territory involves a complex set of motives, incentives, and bargains between a basing state and a potential host state. The basing state typically seeks to maximize its global and regional position abroad by selecting ideal locations within the context of regional threats while the potential host state plays a balancing act between domestic actors who may be hostile to such deployments, regional threat entanglement, as well as any additional benefits the hosting state can derive from the basing state as side payment for hosting a base. Thus, while the existing literature ascribes both benign and malign motives to states that base aggressively abroad, most descriptions leave out the negotiations between the two state actors and how that conditions deployment. This project models the interaction formally as an Osborne and Rubinstein bargaining model (1990) and creates a choice framework for a major power in selecting possible territories to deploy a military base in. These propositions, including target attractiveness, regime type, existing alliances, ongoing conflicts, and location all condition the likely deployment sites for a basing state. The formally derived and generalized hypotheses, as well as relevant variables derived from the existing literature, are then tested using an original data set for US base deployments abroad from the 1898 until 2004. I find that autocratic states, distant states, allies of the United States, powerful states, and countries at war are more likely to host a base than their counterparts.
  • social sciences,
  • alliances,
  • asymmetric relations,
  • bargaining,
  • foreign policy,
  • military bases
Publication Date
Doctor of Philosophy
Field of study
Political Science
Political Science
Benjamin Fordham, David Clark, Patrick Regan, Olga Shvetsova
Citation Information
Michael Anthony Allen. "Military Basing Abroad: Bargaining, Expectations, and Deployment" (2011)
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