Country Listing

Romania Table of Contents


Foreign Military Relations

Until the Soviet-led Warsaw Pact invasion of Czechoslovakia in 1968, Romania had few military ties to countries outside the Warsaw Pact. After 1968 Romania looked toward the West, China, and Third World countries for military cooperation in all areas. It developed additional sources of arms supplies, besides the Soviet Union, to meet its requirements for national defense; ensured itself diverse political support in the event of an attack or invasion; and developed markets for its arms exports. Political and military officials modeled Romania's new military doctrine on that of Yugoslavia and coordinated defense plans with its independent neighbor. In the 1970s and early 1980s, Romania pursued an active program of military cooperation with China, including licensed production of fast attack craft in its shipyards and exchanges of high-level military delegations. Romania's military ties to China, which challenged Soviet leadership of the communist world, were particularly irritating to the Soviet Union. Romania also expanded its cooperation in defense matters with neutral European countries including Austria and Switzerland. It reportedly trained Nicaraguan military pilots in the early 1980s. In October 1986, the minister of national defense visited the United States secretary of defense in Washington. Romania also had a program of reciprocal warship port visits with the United States, Britain, and France.

Data as of July 1989