We have a massive military. We have bases around the world. We have by far and away the largest military in the world. And the main reason this is is not because of threats to “American interests” but because defense spending is how Republicans (and Democrats too) distribute tax money to their constituents. It’s an ugly truth, but it is the truth.
Yes the “defense” of the country is expressly enumerated in the Constitution. DEFENSE. Not empire. Empires are costly for the citizenry of a country,