This article focuses upon the most recent trends in nuclear deterrence and strategic stability. It addresses the contemporary developments in three interconnected domains: first-strike, crisis and arms race stability. It traces the evolution of strategic stability studies, highlights the most fundamental contribution in the three above-mentioned study areas, and attempts to explain the change in contemporary nuclear deterrence. During the Cold War the superpowers developed international practices and unwritten rules of nuclear deterrence. Political practices emerged together with extensive studies of nuclear deterrence, which were based on a rational choice approach and game modelling. Contemporary international relations (IR) faces revival of nuclear deterrence studies. While some scholars are rediscovering the Cold War IR analysis models and adapting them to contemporary realities, others are looking for new analytical possibilities. This article focuses upon interlinkages between firststrike, crisis and arms race stability, and attempts to explain how changes in strategic environment can help better understanding the contemporary nuclear deterrence. It discusses whether and under what conditions nuclear parity, first-strike stability, arms control and crisis equilibrium can guarantee the strategic stability and military balance. It also addresses the qualitative or quantitative change in the conflict or crisis perception, and its implications on contemporary deterrence.
The paper aims at identifying relations between the events which influence Lithuanian-Polish strategic cooperation, defining principal aspects of cooperation dynamics, and analysing recent challenges in relations between Lithuania and Poland. For the purpose of analysis the following objectives have been set: 1) to analyse the development of strategic partnership and political dialogue in bilateral relations; 2) to evaluate the importance of security, defence policy, and economic projects in cooperation between the states; 3) to assess the aspect of ethnic minorities in the context of bilateral relations. The authors of the paper seek to review the principal internal and external factors which affect bilateral cooperation between Lithuania and Poland. The following methods of analysis are used in the paper: public statements made by officials, document analysis and discourse formed by the media. The key areas of analysis are the development of political dialogue, strategic cooperation, security and defence policy, economic and energy cooperation, and questions of ethnic minorities in bilateral relations. Presently in the field there is a lack of thorough investigation of similarities and differences of strategic cooperation between Lithuania and Poland.