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U.S. Military Bases Abroad and Anti-Base Social Movements: Rationalist and Constructivist Explanations for Base Policy Change

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Abstract:

Maintaining military effectiveness through forward deployment is one of the most significant aspects of U.S. strategy to address international security challenges. There are many U.S. military bases abroad, and key policy decisions include base establishment, reduction, and elimination. Determining troop levels and base functions are also important. Furthermore, there are policies on the environment, on military prostitution, and on legal treatment of U.S. soldiers who commit crimes in host states. Which actors create, maintain, and change these policies? When, why, and how do they do so? International relations scholars say that state actors decide what is best for military effectiveness and determine base policies. Alternatively, powerful interest groups that benefit from the military presence may influence base policies. These explanations, however, leave many empirical puzzles unanswered. One must take into account anti-base social movements? efforts in changing base policies. I will explore the interaction between states, pro-base interest groups, and anti-base social movements, to ask if social movements have impact on base policies.To capture the interaction between these actors, I will examine the roles of persuasion and social conformity. Persuasion is a process in which actors? perception of their interests, as well as their preferences, change. Social conformity is an actor?s acceptance of a position due to social rewards and punishment, in the absence of persuasion. Persuasion and social conformity are two social processes that could produce base policy change. I will compare these constructivist explanations with military effectiveness and interest group explanations, which are rationalist explanations. They are rationalist as they assume utility-maximizing actors with fixed interests and preferences, engaging in material cost-benefit calculation and strategic bargaining.I will study the anti-base social movement in Okinawa, Japan, during the 1990s, to see which explanation is best to understand the base policy outcome.
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Name: International Studies Association
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http://www.isanet.org


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URL: http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p98475_index.html
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MLA Citation:

Kawato, Yuko. "U.S. Military Bases Abroad and Anti-Base Social Movements: Rationalist and Constructivist Explanations for Base Policy Change" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the International Studies Association, Town & Country Resort and Convention Center, San Diego, California, USA, Mar 22, 2006 <Not Available>. 2013-12-17 <http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p98475_index.html>

APA Citation:

Kawato, Y. , 2006-03-22 "U.S. Military Bases Abroad and Anti-Base Social Movements: Rationalist and Constructivist Explanations for Base Policy Change" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the International Studies Association, Town & Country Resort and Convention Center, San Diego, California, USA <Not Available>. 2013-12-17 from http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p98475_index.html

Publication Type: Conference Paper/Unpublished Manuscript
Abstract: Maintaining military effectiveness through forward deployment is one of the most significant aspects of U.S. strategy to address international security challenges. There are many U.S. military bases abroad, and key policy decisions include base establishment, reduction, and elimination. Determining troop levels and base functions are also important. Furthermore, there are policies on the environment, on military prostitution, and on legal treatment of U.S. soldiers who commit crimes in host states. Which actors create, maintain, and change these policies? When, why, and how do they do so? International relations scholars say that state actors decide what is best for military effectiveness and determine base policies. Alternatively, powerful interest groups that benefit from the military presence may influence base policies. These explanations, however, leave many empirical puzzles unanswered. One must take into account anti-base social movements? efforts in changing base policies. I will explore the interaction between states, pro-base interest groups, and anti-base social movements, to ask if social movements have impact on base policies.To capture the interaction between these actors, I will examine the roles of persuasion and social conformity. Persuasion is a process in which actors? perception of their interests, as well as their preferences, change. Social conformity is an actor?s acceptance of a position due to social rewards and punishment, in the absence of persuasion. Persuasion and social conformity are two social processes that could produce base policy change. I will compare these constructivist explanations with military effectiveness and interest group explanations, which are rationalist explanations. They are rationalist as they assume utility-maximizing actors with fixed interests and preferences, engaging in material cost-benefit calculation and strategic bargaining.I will study the anti-base social movement in Okinawa, Japan, during the 1990s, to see which explanation is best to understand the base policy outcome.

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Okinawa's Anti-Base Social Movement in the 1990s: Movement Mechanisms, Countermovement Efforts, and the Policy Outcome


 
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