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Countries with U.S. Troops

Name the countries of the world that contain a U.S. military presence of at least 500 active personnel.
As of 18 May 2024. Source: U.S. Department of Defense via Wikipedia.
Note: The U.S. does not publish troop numbers for Iraq or Syria
Quiz by Quizmaster
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Last updated: May 30, 2024
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First submittedDecember 29, 2012
Times taken118,785
Average score71.4%
Rating4.30
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Troops
Country
1,126,675
United States
54,774
Japan
35,068
Germany
24,234
South Korea
12,375
Italy
10,058
United Kingdom
3,479
Bahrain
Troops
Country
3,292
Spain
1,690
Turkey
1,438
Norway
1,106
Belgium
732
Australia
616
Cuba
533
Kuwait
100 Recent Comments
+8
Level 43
Jan 11, 2018
forgot USA *facepalm*
+4
Level 29
Jan 12, 2018
What about Israel?
+11
Level 82
Mar 10, 2019
The IDF defends its own country.
+2
Level 79
Mar 10, 2019
The United Kingdom does too.
+10
Level 82
Mar 11, 2019
^ yeah not so much. Those American troops in the UK are still there from the last time the British Isles were under threat of invasion and they very much needed help defending them. Correct me if I'm wrong but the only time I believe US military has been in Israel was during the Gulf War (which Israel was not a party to) to shoot down SCUD missiles and afterward they left. Anyway it's a popular misconception that the Israeli military is somehow an extension of the American military but it's simply not the case. They get their hardware from a variety of places, they are capable of being fully self-sufficient, and though the two countries share intelligence; cooperate on R&D, logistics, and counter-terrorism; and regularly perform joint training exercises, no American personnel have ever been involved in any Israeli war. But a lot of people think they have been.
+13
Level 82
Apr 24, 2019
When did the Americans help defend the UK? We helped the US invade mainland Europe from British shores. Don't get me wrong, I'm glad of the American support but we havnt been invaded since Hitler tried and that was before Pearl Harbor.
+6
Level 82
Apr 24, 2019
The US Navy unofficially became involved in late 1939. They started mostly by supplying the British and also shadowing and reporting positions of German U-boats. US Navy vessels patrolled and kept open the Western Atlantic freeing up the Royal Navy to focus on the East. In 1940 the US signed a mutual defense pact with Canada and later the Lend/Lease program began to replace British losses while the USN still protected British shipping in the North + West Atlantic. In '41 US ports began accepting British ships for repairs. In April '41 a US destroyer attacked a German U-boat in the North Atlantic. Soon after US military bases for destroyers and seaplanes were opened in Ireland and Scotland. American involvement rapidly increased from there. An American pilot spotted the Bismarck and Americans were involved in many other naval battles. US ground troops secured Greenland and Iceland. American GIs started landing in the UK in '42, after the official declaration of war.
+6
Level 82
Apr 24, 2019
and I didn't say you were invaded I said "the last time the British Isles were under threat of invasion." If Britain had lost control of the seas they would have been cut off and eventually invaded, too. But US support and mutual defense extended back many years prior to Pearl Harbor.

I'm not trying to say that the British were weak or bad at defending themselves, just that the American involvement in the defense of Britain during WW2 was much more direct - involving direct engagement of US military vessels, opening of US military bases on British soil, and loss of American lives - than in any defense of Israel against invasion that has ever taken place. That was the whole point. The US has given Israel money and equipment; never troops or bases.

+1
Level 82
Apr 24, 2019
The United forces of axis Europe was an entirely different beast to the alliances Israel has had to face down though. Push comes to shove, American (and probably British) troops would be on the ground and Israel's enemies know it.
+4
Level 82
Apr 24, 2019
nafe: maybe, though I actually kind of doubt it. But so far, there has never been a need for it, as like I said, the IDF defends its own country. In some alternate reality where they had to fight Hitler and the Japanese Empire, then, yeah, they probably would need help. :P
+1
Level 70
Jun 10, 2020
This job has been outsourced to the coming Israelis when the “little loyal Jewish Ulster in a sea of potentially hostile Arabism” has been conceptualised in 1917.
+2
Level 79
Mar 10, 2019
I got the United States last
+2
Level 59
Mar 10, 2019
How did i miss the USA?
+1
Level 76
Mar 11, 2019
Qatar? Al Udeid Air Base is there, and it is one of the countries where the 5th Fleet's personnel would be hosted.
+2
Level ∞
Mar 11, 2019
521 troops
+2
Level 43
Apr 24, 2019
2,976 actually. Currently deployed and actively stationed there. This includes reservists that are currently on active status.

The wikipedia page you pulled your numbers from states in the references that these are "permenantly assigned" to these locations. However this does not reflect the true military presence in these countries.

https://www.visualcapitalist.com/u-s-military-personnel-deployments-country/

+4
Level ∞
Apr 24, 2019
That's just some random webpage. But, credit where it's due, they post their source. What is their source? The same as our source, only 4 years out of date.
+4
Level 53
Mar 21, 2019
Poland?
+5
Level 64
Jun 19, 2020
Poland and Romania. Not sure why they aren't listed.
+1
Level 47
Apr 2, 2019
Saudi Arabia looked like a lot more than 700 when I was there.
+1
Level 82
Apr 24, 2019
Where did you see them? Officially, the US has no troops in Saudi Arabia. Unofficially, I think they maintain at least one air base somewhere around Riyadh. But... it's pretty low-profile and I personally never saw any US servicemen in Saudi Arabia over the course of the six years I was living there. Saw tons in Bahrain, though. The Americans I saw in the Kingdom were almost all teachers or in the oil industry.
+14
Level 53
Apr 24, 2019
I am waiting for quiz showing how many Innocent people all arund the world lost their lives because of USA and their lust for crude oil and other natural resources
+13
Level 62
Apr 24, 2019
Good grief.
+14
Level 82
Apr 24, 2019
Much smaller than the number of people alive today because of American hegemony since 1945.
+14
Level 53
Apr 25, 2019
People from Vietnam, Korea, Yugoslavia, Libya, Syria Hiroshima, Nagasaki would definitely argue with that
+12
Level 82
Apr 25, 2019
They can argue as much as they like and they would still be wrong. It's kind of funny you even bring up Yugoslavia. I'd encourage you to read about what actually happened there. And Hiroshima/Nagasaki since I did say since 1945. There was no hegemony prior to 1945, thus, WW2. Thanks for making my point for me.
+3
Level 79
Aug 1, 2023
And then there was "American hegemony" after 1945? What about the Cold War?
+6
Level 62
Apr 25, 2019
I would suppose that Xenon would argue that nobody would have died in the civil wars in Korea, Vietnam, Libya, or Syria if the United States had not become involved- opposing factions would have put their differences aside and held hands with one another in perfect harmony. You know, just like everyone did in Yugoslavia during its breakup.... Oh, wait! Never mind!
+11
Level ∞
Feb 11, 2020
The bombings of Nagasaki and Hiroshima saved millions of lives. Including probably my grandfather's who was training for a very high risk position in the planned invasion of the Japanese mainlands. In fact, so many purple hearts were produced by the U.S. military for that planned invasion that we are still using those purple hearts today. But U.S. casualties would have paled in comparison to the millions of Japanese who would have died. And let's not forget the millions of people in the rest of Asia under Japanese occupation who would have died as well.

There are reasons to oppose dropping the bomb in WWII, but saving lives is not one of them.

+2
Level 34
Jun 10, 2024
Are you American? It seems so from your comments
+1
Level 79
Jun 13, 2024
American propaganda is a heck of a drug. I remember when I still believed this.
+13
Level 82
Mar 18, 2020
QM, with respect, that's the propagandistic reason cooked up by the US for dropping the bombs after the fact to create a rationale for using such horrible weapons. The Japanese had already tried to surrender before the bombs were even dropped. It was a straight up war crime and didn't save anyone's life. But it did kill hundreds of thousands of civilians needlessly.
+3
Level 82
Apr 24, 2019
Saving the rest of Europe from Russian invasion maybe...
+8
Level 62
Apr 25, 2019
Make no mistake: If the United States had not actively participated in the reconstruction of western Europe and made its military might available to be the cornerstone of the NATO alliance, the Soviet Union would have surged much further than they did with the Warsaw Pact. Without a coordinated, American-backed alliance, do you REALLY think that the "Iron Curtain" would have been where Stalin decided to voluntarily stop increasing his sphere of influence?
+5
Level 82
Apr 26, 2019
We'd probably have been looking at an occupation of most of Europe, perhaps some really bloody wars followed by some very nasty insurgencies. Genocide in the Balkans and Israel. Brutal invasions/insurgencies/civil wars/ethnic cleansing in South Korea and Taiwan. and East Timor. and Africa, worse than what we've seen anyway. A prolonged Soviet occupation of Afghanistan. Possible nuclear war between Pakistan and India, or the USSR and some other less powerful nation. Multiple European invasions of the Americas, if you want to roll the clock back that far. But the biggest thing would be that in a world with no global hegemon and many competing nation-states with roughly comparable military strengths you end up in a situation where large-scale protracted and indecisive multi-national wars are likely to occur, a la WW1 and WW2. Taking away the nation at the top just creates a power vacuum that will be filled, and a lot of instability.
+1
Level 69
Jun 2, 2019
The Balkans got attempted genocide anyway.
+5
Level 82
Mar 18, 2020
Attempted, yes. And stopped by American involvement.
+2
Level 70
Jun 19, 2020
@kal's first reply: The thing with hegemons is that they always vanish sooner or later. When that day comes for the US, presumably China will be the new hegemon for some decades to centuries. Accordingly, whoever is hegemon should do their best to advance the executive power of the United Nations (or alike). Because otherwise your world war 3 could come or at least does the former hegemon bend his knee to the new one.
+1
Level 58
Jun 10, 2024
Aged like fine wine.
+1
Level 46
Apr 29, 2019
Should I be ashamed that I forgot U.S.
+3
Level 69
Jun 2, 2019
Oh hey! Just when you got this all nice and updated, we sent 900 troops to Saudi Arabia and Qatar, literally yesterday!
+2
Level 44
Oct 16, 2019
You forget US troops deployed for training exercises in other countries. (E.g. Australia)
+1
Level 69
Nov 22, 2019
Wow the US was part of it ba dum tsssss
+1
Level 32
Nov 22, 2019
Ireland ?
+4
Level 45
Jun 19, 2020
Cuba tricked my up due to the territorial control and jurisdiction! I forgot it was still recognized as sovereign Cuban territory on a perpetual lease...
+6
Level 58
Jun 19, 2020
No Djibouti ? There is an American military base there
+5
Level 57
Jun 19, 2020
Surprised that the Philippines isn't included here considering how many of the US Troops here have made children with locals
+2
Level 73
Jun 22, 2020
When I was in Davao I was pointed out the large U.S. base right next to the airport. Surprised it's not mentioned here.
+2
Level 15
Jun 19, 2020
How did only 90% get USA lol
+1
Level 24
Jun 22, 2020
there are us troops in qatar also
+3
Level 82
Jun 22, 2020
"Protecting you from Russian invasion since 1945!"

but forgot to protect themselves.

+1
Level 58
Jul 6, 2020
The US said that following the conflict between India and China, they moved troops from Germany into India and other US-allied South and East Asian Countries.
+1
Level 83
Aug 4, 2020
No Netherlands? Schinnen, Volkel are both in the Netherlands, not to mention Joint Force Command Brunssum.
+1
Level 71
Sep 22, 2020
Djibouti has at least 4,000 US troops.
+1
Level 65
Nov 2, 2020
If you read Mearsheimer then you'll realize why USA has troops in the majority of the continents. The international system drives big states to chase the Hegemony, and oh boy the US did that.
+2
Level 63
Dec 28, 2020
Interesting how none of these countries even remotely pose a threat to our freedom, yet conservatives label us as unpatriotic when we question the bloated budget the military has. The military only draws us apart instead of helping us to come together as a species and achieve peace
+5
Level 77
Jul 7, 2021
We currently HAVE peace. War is the natural state of humanity. I think people tend to not realize just how peaceful of a time we are living in right now because they point to regional violence here and there. If you strive for perfection, you will always be let down. Less than 100 years ago, countries straight up invading other countries was literally an everyday occurrence. And now, it barely happens. One of the reasons that it barely happens are strong military alliances. And part of that military alliance, is the presence of soldiers from the strongest military on the planet. Yeah, the military budget is probably too high, I agree. But I also believe that peace through strength is a very real thing, but only if the strong aren't the aggressors. If you believe that the US ARE the aggressors, that's a very different debate.
+3
Level 67
Jul 12, 2022
You seem to think we're in these countries to scare them out of "threatening our freedom." We don't post troops in these countries because we're worried these countries are going to come at us. In every case except Cuba, we are in these countries with their permission. We are in these countries for the strategic value of their locations, so we can defend against or go to into *other* countries should the need arise.
+1
Level 49
Jan 10, 2021
I can't be the only one that missed the USA.
+3
Level 46
Jan 20, 2021
Super surprised that Poland is not on the list.
+3
Level 17
Jan 27, 2021
not Poland? Not actual
+5
Level 63
Apr 1, 2021
But Russia and China are the threat, right? Right?!
+4
Level 82
May 23, 2021
uh. yeah. What do you think the troops are doing in these places? Were you under the impression all of these countries were being actively invaded? Arguably excluding Cuba, all of these places host US troops that were invited to come there. Several of them actually are threatened by Russian and Chinese expansionism. Others are worried about Iran, North Korea, ISIS or the Taleban.
+7
Level 81
Oct 18, 2021
Invited? To Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan? If you invade a country and the new government you support wants you to stay there, that doesn't make you an occupier? Are you for real?

P.S. Yes, I am very well aware these were/are dictatorships. Yet, there are dozens of other dictatorships around the globe that the US actively support or at least tolerate. I live in a dictatorship, and my government has full US support. So, in the end, it's the American interests that matter, not "fighting for freedom" or some similar bullshit.

+1
Level 82
Mar 16, 2022
You seem to know much on the subject of bullshit. I'll defer to your expertise.
+8
Level 81
Sep 5, 2022
You seem like such a nice fellow, and from all I have read from you, I really want to give you a friendly advice: do some tests for narcissistic personality disorder, you don't have to tell anyone about it, just check it, please, you may be surprised by the results...
+2
Level 82
Mar 16, 2022
Right.
+4
Level 67
Jul 12, 2022
SaorAlba's comment has aged worse than perhaps any other on this site. Yes, Russia is the threat.
+1
Level 85
May 30, 2024
Like fine wine....
+1
Level 77
Jul 7, 2021
I got about halfway done with the time and was like Jeez...who the hell has 1.2 million US troops? Bigtime facepalm.
+2
Level 24
Sep 12, 2021
UPDATE NEEDED!! We pulled out of Afghanistan.
+1
Level 49
Oct 18, 2021
Think this is a bit out of date e.g. putting troops in TW, leaving Afghanistan. Is Diego Garcia included in the UK? As should be Mauritius given UN ruling. Really interesting quiz though and thank you :)
+1
Level 81
Oct 18, 2021
Afghanistan out. Repeat, Afghanistan out.
+3
Level 80
Feb 24, 2022
Qatar should be here.
+1
Level 46
Mar 14, 2022
Only missed Belgium and Cuba
+1
Level 74
May 11, 2022
Surprised by a few absences on here - I know several people who are or have been stationed in Thailand, the Philippines, Djibouti, and Australia but none of them make an appearance. Guess there just aren't enough there?
+1
Level 82
Jun 19, 2022
The US military left Thailand in 1976 (though I think it continued being a popular place to go and stop for R&R long after that), and the Philippines in 1992. The presence in Australia is relatively small; the odd absence of Djibouti (sometimes appearing on the quiz, sometimes not) is discussed above.
+1
Level 85
Jul 1, 2022
At https://www.defense.gov/News/News-Stories/Article/Article/2979096/biden-thanks-us-troops-in-poland-for-their-sacrifices-service/ there's a DOD press release that predates by 6 days the date in the quiz's subtitle and that says there are over 100,000 in Europe.
+1
Level ∞
Jul 1, 2022
The source is listed and presumed accurate.
+1
Level 65
Jul 9, 2022
I think that Greece should be included
+1
Level 75
Jul 12, 2022
Well, Putin has made all this simultaneously seem not quite so bad and completely unnecessary. Russia's conventional military is barely managing to gain ground in Ukraine. How do we think it would do in Poland?
+9
Level 82
Jul 12, 2022
I'm sure that the Polish would prefer simply to not find out. They are one of the most outspoken advocates for US military presence in Europe and have been for decades. As surprisingly resilient as Ukraine has proven to be, as capable and brave as their leaders and soldiers have proven, all that comes as little consolation to the current or former residents of Mariupol.
+3
Level 64
Jul 12, 2022
Qatar??
+1
Level 68
Jul 12, 2022
Is Cuba only Guantanamo Bay?
+1
Level 82
Jul 12, 2022
yes
+2
Level 25
Jul 14, 2022
Am i the only one who see all these comments and find that funny?

1. I think Quizmaster knew numbers would change with time when he did that quiz… so you don’t have to say it every time there is a deployment!!!

2. Arguing is all about listening, many of you are just arguing alone… you must include an answer to the previous opinion to have a good argument (for exemple: I agree with the fact that… but i think…) because all of you aren’t even arguing on the same subject 😂, you know, there are some rules when you argue with someone, you have to understand his point well and to listen well before to answer, then make sure your answer has something to do with the previous one!

3. Opinions can change you know, if nobody changes his opinion after an argument, well it doesn’t deserve anything… That’s why you constantly have to reconsider your point of view!

Now apply this and i’m sure the comments will be way more exciting!👍

+2
Level 26
Jul 18, 2022
I only missed the USA and Bahrain. Oh god! I didn't know that USA was on the list
+3
Level 69
Apr 4, 2023
Aren't a TON of US soldiers in Djibouti? Thought they had a large base there...
+1
Level 67
Apr 4, 2023
Just missed Bahrain and Kuwait
+1
Level 57
Aug 28, 2023
Poland is missing
+4
Level 28
Jan 11, 2024
Dude, this is cap. US has troops also in baltics, libya, indoneissa, philippines, qatar uae bahrain
+3
Level 85
May 30, 2024
He provided a source. What's yours?
+1
Level 87
May 31, 2024
Hey, a number of people have commented on the fact that Djibouti seems to be missing from this list, but no one has addressed those comments. The U.S.'s Camp Lemonnier is located on the south side of Djibouti's airport. I've seen the American flag there.
+3
Level 75
Jun 1, 2024
406 according to the same source. Not that hard to just click....
+1
Level 76
Jun 1, 2024
According to Reuters there are 2500 US troops in Iraq and 900 in Syria. Wouldn't it be better to include these estimates as answers, rather than to omit them altogether?
+1
Level ∞
Jun 1, 2024
Without an official source, no. It's likely to be very out of date and inaccurate.
+1
Level 40
Jun 3, 2024
US bases in Iraq and Syria have been in the news due to them being targeted by Iranian proxies; 2,500 in Iraq and 500 in Syria. This is quite low effort of you, QM.

https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2024/1/27/us-iraq-begin-formal-talks-on-withdrawing-us-led-military-coalition

https://www.reuters.com/world/middle-east/what-are-us-troops-doing-middle-east-where-are-they-2024-01-30/#:~:text=The%20U.S.%20has%20roughly%20900,as%20the%20Al%20Tanf%20garrison.

+1
Level 43
Jun 10, 2024
People despise the US for behaving exactly as a great world power should behave. When you have predominance over such a vast portion of the world as the US does, you begin to behave in ways to advance your best interest. The expansion of US hard and soft influence after WW2 is a direct realization of this from US policy makers. Originating with the NSC 68 memo, US foreign policy became aggressive - leading to both direct military interventions and the creation of military bases around key areas of the world.

The key to all of this is that this is a behavior that is shared among all nations at the top of the world power hierarchy. The Europeans arguing about US imperialism from their studio apartment in dilapidated urban centers would be the first to support their country acting like the US if their nation rose to the top of the global order. The distaste for the US is simply frustration that their countrymen are not as powerful globally.

+1
Level 27
Jun 10, 2024
Surprised Poland isn't here with what's happening just next doors.
+1
Level 23
Jun 11, 2024
Shouldn't Kosovo be listed? They have a huge American base (Bondsteel) and they have a presence at Camp Film City and other places (over 700 US troops in total)