NEWSWATCH New York Times: As the Arctic Thaws, New Temptations
The New York Times comments on Russia’s attempt to use the United Nations to expand Russian territory in the Arctic, accompanied by expanded Russian military activity in the region.
As the Arctic rapidly thaws and surrenders access to its awesome wealth of energy and precious minerals, it is inevitable that nations in the far north will stake claims over huge exclusive economic zones …
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Russia’s bid was a resubmission of an earlier claim … rejected by the United Nations in 2002 for insufficient evidence …
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… Russia’s evident readiness to play by the rules, however, is not the full story. … Putin has also called for a greatly increased military presence …. Earlier this year, Russia conducted large military maneuvers there, and many Soviet-era bases have been reactivated under the newly formed Arctic Joint Strategic Command. The hard-line deputy prime minister in charge of the arms industry, Dmitri Rogozin, traveled to the North Pole earlier this year and proclaimed it a “Russian Mecca.”