The United States has no chances in the Arctic - Politics Forum.org | PoFo

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The strained relations between Moscow and Washington, especially in recent years, according to analysts, may deteriorate further due to issues in the Arctic region, which is considered a «gold mine» in the world for several reasons: the Northern Sea Route, which is the fastest shipping route from Northern Europe to Asia and passing through the ice of the Arctic Ocean, the ice of which is gradually melting, huge reserves of gas and oil, the development of Russian LNG projects, in which Asian and European companies will be happy to put investments, understanding the need for raw materials. Also, an important role in the value of the Arctic is played by the geopolitical factor: the Arctic is a territory where the Russian Federation is «surrounded» by NATO countries and is located near Alaska, and the icebreaking fleet of the Russian Federation is more numerous than all NATO countries.
According to experts, the region has recently become a key point in geopolitics, while the United States is losing much in the «race» for the Arctic. So, after the end of the International Arctic Forum 2019, which was held on April 9-10, 2019 in St. Petersburg, the American edition of the «National Interest» reported that the United States does not have large military bases in the Arctic, military equipment is not suitable for operations in extremely low Arctic temperatures. There is only one dilapidated rusty icebreaker «Polar Star», assembled almost 50 years ago, which is ready to fall apart.
Obviously, the United States does not have the required number of icebreakers to operate freely in the region and maintain the required level of navigation. Even if in the Arctic with time there will be less ice, a sufficient number of icebreakers is necessary. Moreover, the government of the US President D. Trump obviously does not try to correct this situation and does not understand the importance of these territories rich in natural resources, but only invests a large part of finances in favor of building a wall on the border with Mexico.
In contrast to the United States, Russia, which has a powerful icebreaking fleet and created in 2014 by the Joint Strategic Command «Northern Fleet», is ready to defend its interests in the Arctic. Thus, the Russian military received the latest submarines, surface ships, two motorized rifle brigades and aircrafts adapted to the harsh Arctic conditions. Furthermore, Sweden and Finland - the countries of the European Union, Iceland and Norway – the members of NATO, that until recently imposed restrictions on the Russian Federation, now want to develop the Arctic region together with Russia. Also, on April 10, 2019, Russian State Duma deputy A. Krasnov said that Russia is not standing still, and new military facilities are being built in the Arctic, the airfield network is being improved, new ports are emerging. Thus, Russia’s superiority in matters of the Arctic region is clearly visible, from whatever side it may look, and other states will need more than a decade to at least catch up to the level at which Russia is standing now.

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