The author just scratches the surface of the issues that really matter (is forward basing a harm or benefit). Mr. Vine is on the right path, but meanders around subjects and throw in third rate references and stories, then reference them again and again, as if they mean something. Throughout the book there are references to speeches by sergeants, majors, and lieutenant colonels with no clear idea of their title or position. Any one who has spent more than a day or two around the military knows that rarely are sergeants, majors, or lieutenant colonels privy to or able to discuss the types of details in the book with any type of authority.
Mr. Vine has an impressive amount of research which one day will translate into a great story about the life cycle of US bases in the 20th and 21st centuries. However, he's wasted this voluminous amount of data on an amateurish work that jumps from subject to subject without clearly answering or defining what he's doing. In the final chapter he tries to wrap it all up with a nice thesis statement, but it falls apart because the book was not written that way. It's really a bunch of stories of varying relevancy about US bases with many pointless stories in between. He has several real gems hidden in the book, but they are not brought to light, but glossed over.
The other major blind spot of this book is the failure to include any real information or data from the nations that host US bases abroad. He could have easily tapped into the German, Korean, Philippines, Japanese, or Panamanian government or other primary sources for their studies of what happens when the US military departs an area. Each country has experienced a mass departure of US forces int the past 25 years and there are reams of data in each country looking up, down and sideways and the problem.. I applaud him for the effort, but the book needs more structure and the other side of the coin needs to be explored to make this book of value for future academics, sociologist, government bureaucrats, and those who study the military.