Russia has taken advantage of instability throughout the Middle East and U.S. retrenchment to rebuild ties with governments and regimes across the region. These efforts include: arms sales, military training and cooperation, and technology transfers.
Moscow has capitalized on vacuums created by U.S. policy mistakes in the Middle East and Washington’s retreat from global leadership. Russia has expanded military relationships with a variety of counterparts in the region.
Russia’s military power is most visible in the Middle East, where it has established its ability to deploy an expeditionary force and serve as a party to conflict resolution efforts. As the world’s second largest arms exporter, Russia has aggressively pursued weapons sales around the world for financial gain and to project its political, economic, and military clout.