Saturday, August 29, 2015

Sino-Russian Axis Plundering The Arctic

by JASmius

There's an old saying: "Where there's a will, there's a way."  It's not a particularly profound adage, since, for example, I have a powerful will to be a metal-bender like Magneto and yet I've never managed to so much as move a paperclip with my mind.  And it certainly never manifested itself in my high school social life.

But it is sometimes applicable in the real world.  A prominent example is the race to extract vast stores of natural resources from the top of the planet.  And in this endeavor, the Russians and ChiComms are displaying a great deal more will than is Barack Obama:

Already criticized for what many call a weak response to Russian expansionism in Europe, Barack Obama may be losing a far more important battle with Russian strongman Vladimir Putin: the conquest of the Arctic Circle and its huge deposits of strategic resources.

Many lawmakers, military leaders and analysts, according to the New York Times, believe the United States is lagging in preparing for the new environmental, economic and geopolitical realities facing the region.

“We have been for some time clamoring about our nation’s lack of capacity to sustain any meaningful presence in the Arctic,” Admiral Paul F. Zukunft, the Coast Guard’s commandant, told the Times....

The United States Navy rarely operates in the circle, the Times reports, but Russia and other nations are establishing key strategic beachheads in a bid for control of territory.

And how. The Russians are building ten new search-and-rescue stations on top of reopening all their old Soviet-era Arctic military bases, and deploying a fleet of forty-one ice-breakers.  How many of the latter do we have?  Two.  And we will soon be passed up in that category by Red China, which has deployed one (Xuelong) and is nearing completion on another, with more on the way, despite not being, unlike us, an Arctic nation.

The will disparity is quite easy to explain.  Most of the treasure trove of strategic resources in the Arctic are in the form of fossil fuels - oil and natural gas.  Our enemies are properly and justifiably very interested in extracting those resources and taking them for themselves, whereas Barack Obama's ideological hostility to same and hopelessly stubborn infatuation with non-energy schemes like wind and solar makes the Arctic, in his mind, irrelevant.

The U.S. "isn't in the game" because it's a game The One isn't interested in playing (Royal Shell not withstanding, and I think he'll "rectify" that "mistake" quickly).  As far as he is concerned, the Arctic is Vladimir Putin's lake.  Which raises the intriguing question of what he's going to dissemble about this week as he becomes the first sitting president to venture north of the Arctic Circle.

Maybe he's going to shaft Royal Shell on the Chukchi Sea drilling project personally. T'would fit with his "being the president I've always wanted to be" motif.

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