About the Lithuanian Armed Forces

About the Lithuanian Armed Forces

The Lithuanian Armed Forces have changed completely since the country regained its independence in 1990. Lithuania has been put to the test in the establishment and development process of its Armed Forces. Within this process, two basic challenges have already been met, and the Armed Forces are still facing the third.

The first challenge was taken up during the earliest years of the reestablished independence. At that time, Lithuania was striving to set up new structures and to develop a military capability in order to be able to ensure the territorial defence of the country.

The newly born Armed Forces gained confidence and international recognition after their first mission abroad in 1994, when a platoon served as part of the UN protection force in Croatia.

With the decision to seek membership of NATO, the Armed Forces accepted the second challenge, to adapt to the requirements set for NATO membership. It took almost ten years to turn gradually into an interoperable Alliance force able to participate in NATO-led and other international operations. It was also a time for learning and adapting to the collective defence thinking and planning.

At the present time, the Armed Forces are facing their third challenge, transformation. National efforts at transformation are directed towards the preparations for state defence and expeditionary warfare.
While the transformation of the Armed Forces is a continuous process, our vision is to have motivated, capable and modern forces, which will defend Lithuania, and, moreover, contribute to the collective security of the whole transatlantic area.