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Military Bases That U.S. Could Use





Here is a list of military bases in the Middle East, Turkey and Pakistan that are used by U.S. forces or could be used for attacks on Afghanistan and other targets in the U.S. war on terrorism:

BAHRAIN: U.S. Navy base at Juffair, about 5 miles southeast of the capital Manama, provides onshore offices for the Navy's 5th Fleet, which has aircraft carriers, destroyers and other ships stationed in the Persian Gulf and Arabian Sea. The U.S. Air Force uses an isolated royal air base in the desert about 20 miles south of Manama for some warplanes. U.S. Navy cargo planes use an airstrip about 5 miles northeast of Manama to bring mail and supplies to ships at sea.

KUWAIT - Camp Doha, an isolated U.S. Army base along the Persian Gulf coast about 10 miles west of Kuwait City, contains tanks, Bradley fighting vehicles and artillery. Soldiers are based there and troops come through regularly for training. The U.S. Air Force uses two Kuwaiti bases - Ali Salem air base about 45 miles northwest of Kuwait City, and Ahmed Al Jaber air base, about 45 miles west of the capital. The U.S. military won't discuss what sort of aircraft are now in the area, but since the 1991 Gulf war, F-16 and F-10 warplanes, Stealth fighter bombers and Apache, Blackhawk and Kiowa helicopters have used the air bases.

OMAN: Oman gives the U.S. Air Force access to its al-Seeb air base for maintenance of transport and refueling planes. The Gulf of Oman is also host to a number of warships and aircraft carriers taking part in enforcing the ``no-fly'' zones over Iraq. The government has not disclosed how many U.S. personnel are in Oman.

PAKISTAN: The government is believed to have offered five airfields for U.S. use, all along Pakistan's 1,500-mile border with Afghanistan. The largest is at Quetta in Baluchistan Province. The others are a small airfield about 10 miles from Omara on the Arabian Sea that can accommodate 737 Boeing jets; the isolated Kharan airfield near Chigai, where Pakistan exploded its underground nuclear device in 1998; an airstrip at Bareder, about 30 miles from Peshawar in the northwest, which was used by Gary Powers, the U.S. pilot whose spy plane was shot down over the former Soviet Union in 1960; and a small airstrip in Chitral also in northwest Pakistan.

QATAR: The government has been tightlipped about the U.S. military presence, saying there are 1,000 troops but refusing to disclose the number of warplanes. A U.S. military base being built in Qatar is expected to be the largest American base and arms depot outside the United States. Its location and the time of its completion have not been disclosed.

SAUDI ARABIA: Following the 1996 bombing of a U.S. military housing complex in eastern Saudi Arabia that killed 19 servicemen, the United States moved its Air Force contingent to Prince Sultan Air Base, a vast compound in a remote stretch of desert south of Riyadh, the capital. About 4,500 U.S. soldiers and an undisclosed number of warplanes are based in al-Kharj, flying missions over southern Iraq to enforce a ``no fly'' zone. The Saudi government has expressed reservations about its use in the anti-terror campaign - fearing attacks on fellow Arab states could be launched from there - and what role the base might play is still being negotiated.

TURKEY: U.S. action in Turkey would likely be centered at Incirlik air base, a sprawling field that is a short flight from Iraq and Syria. It was used by allied aircraft in the 1991 Gulf War, and some 50 U.S. F-15 and F-16 fighters are there, patrolling a no-fly zone over Iraq. The base is near Adana in southern Turkey. More than 1,500 miles from Afghanistan, it could best serve as a supply or transport base for fighting in that region. Incirlik was built by U.S. Army engineers as a Cold War outpost, and the U.S. planes there are housed in hardened concrete shelters built to withstand bomb attacks. Turkey also has military air bases farther east near the cities of Diyarbakir and Malatya. Airports in Istanbul and Ankara also could be used as transport facilities.

UNITED ARAB EMIRATES: There are no permanent U.S. bases in this Gulf state, but warships and aircraft carriers often dock here for refueling.

YEMEN: The Yemeni government has offered the United States the use of Aden port for refueling warships. Aden was used by U.S. military craft in the past, but not since Oct. 12, 2000, when a small boat was used to bomb the USS Cole as it docked for refueling. The Cole was heavily damaged and 17 U.S. sailors were killed.

Copyright 2001 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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