Empire by the numbers
How far does the Empire's reach extend? Laurence Vance at the Lew Rockwell site has reviewed the latest quarterly report from the Pentagon that keeps track of these things: U.S. troops are currently stationed in 144 countries. And 15 territories.
Vance notes helpfully there are 193 countries in the world.
Many more telling numbers are found in an excerpt from Chalmers Johnson's newest book Nemesis — the final volume of his trilogy chronicling the spread of the Empire that began with his pre-9/11 volume Blowback. These figures are my favorite:
Interestingly enough, the thirty-eight large and medium-sized American facilities spread around the globe in 2005 — mostly air and naval bases for our bombers and fleets — almost exactly equals Britain's thirty-six naval bases and army garrisons at its imperial zenith in 1898. The Roman Empire at its height in 117 AD required thirty-seven major bases to police its realm from Britannia to Egypt, from Hispania to Armenia. Perhaps the optimum number of major citadels and fortresses for an imperialist aspiring to dominate the world is somewhere between thirty-five and forty.
The total number of overseas bases of all sizes: 737.