The Russian Federation is involved in at least three continents (Europe, Asia, Africa) where it owns military facilities. Their infrastructure in foreign territories includes airports, bases, proving grounds, radar stations and navy installations. The process of expanding the military potential has begun in the previous century but strategic investments and contract extensions are being undertaken nowadays. The Russian Federation is aware that global rivalry is unlimited and that the key to maintaining the status of a world power is constant, intensive and unconventional use of influence in several regions at the same time. Only such a strategy makes it possible to enter into negotiations in a privileged position.
While the reality of the Cold War allowed Russia to have an unlimited military presence, primarily in its own spheres of influence, after 1991 the Kremlin was forced to leave bases and strategic facilities in various parts of the world — from Cuba to Vietnam. In Europe this resignation was parallel to the loss of Russian influence and the withdrawal of Russian troops from the former Eastern Bloc countries and some post-Soviet republics. Military degradation was taking place in those bases that were not defunct. Their main function in this period was to mark the Russian sphere of influence, and therefore to be a tool of political involvement and pressure on local authorities, as well as an element preventing NATO’s further expansion into the post-Soviet area.
Military facilities abroad are an element of international competition and a manifestation of superpower ambitions. It is also a proof that the country still takes part in the global game, not staying behind the U.S. or China. The Russian Federation is trying to maintain its influence in the former U.S.S.R. territories and is constantly seeking opportunities to increase its military potential in Asia and Africa, which would enable the development of cooperation with countries in these regions — not only of a military, but also political and economic nature.
The report is a subjective analysis of the military infrastructure of the Russian Federation in selected regions. Countries belonging to the Collective Security Treaty Organization and the former Eastern Bloc were particularly taken into account. In their deliberations, the authors do not raise the issue and do not assess international armed conflicts, Russia’s participation in foreign military missions, relations between particular countries, the use of private military companies or investments by Russian state-owned companies. The report aims to analytically show the military infrastructural potential of the Russian Federation in connection with the international security situation. In addition, the active political and military involvement of the U.S.A., France and China in several continents at the same time is an important element contributing to the expansion of Russia’s military potential.
Dr Agnieszka Rogozińska – Member of the Program Board at the Institute of New Europe. Doctor of social sciences, assistant professor at the Department of National Security of the Jan Kochanowski University of Kielce. Intern at the Polish Library in Paris, the Polish Institute and Sikorski Museum in London, as well as the LUMSA University in Rome and the University of Córdoba. Author and scientific editor of several monographs, author of several dozen articles on the discipline of security science. Her research interests focus on Euro-Atlantic security issues, the institutional dimension of security and contemporary security threats.
Aleksander Ksawery Olech – Specialist in the field of security and international relations. Director of the European Security Programme at the Institute of New Europe. PhD candidate in security sciences at the War Studies University in Warsaw. He gained research experience at the Université Jean Moulin III in Lyon, the Institute of International Relations in Prague, and the Institute of Peace Support and Conflict Management in Vienna. Scholarship holder of the OSCE & UNODA Peace and Security Program and of the Casimir Pulaski Foundation. His main research interests are terrorism, international cooperation for security in Eastern Europe and the role of NATO and the EU in the environment of hybrid threats.
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