Having been a war planner in Europe (and fighter pilot with combat experience) let me point out the falicy in the Ron Paul approach and the oversight in aj59 comment above. Planners look at the possible conflict scenarios as contingencies for which advance planning is needed. It is relatively easy to deploy troups or a squadron on fighters to a "hot spot" - what is not so easy is the logistics support needed to conduct sustained operations once they are there. Pre-positioning consumables forward is the only way to prepare since we don't have enough airlift to move them when needed and ocean transport is less timely. A base like Ramstein in Germany provides both a staging location from which short range (slower - smaller) airlift sufices.