The Russian exclave of Kaliningrad is a political and geographic anomaly. Separated from Russia and situated on the Baltic Sea, the region is surrounded by NATO-member states Poland and Lithuania. It’s closer to Berlin and Prague than it is to Moscow and St Petersburg.
Throughout the Cold War, Kaliningrad was as a dagger pointed at Scandinavia and Central Europe. That part of the Baltic coast was one of the most heavily militarized regions in the USSR. The exclave still has great military and strategic value for Moscow, especially given Russian president Vladimir Putin’s appetite for stirring up trouble with his neighbors.
Full article: Russia controls this vital strategic exclave in the heart of NATO-allied eastern Europe (International Business Times)