Геополитические интересы России в Арктике

Буянов Валерий Степанович
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It ought to be stated, that Russia's activities in the Arctic zone not always seem justified by its national and geopolitical interests. It might be referred to, say, sale of Alaska to theUnited States of America in 1867. The deal cost the USA $7.2 million, or 14.32 million roubles of that time. Well, the Americans «extorted» from Alaska the noncomparable sums, considering oil production, gold and other minerals mining. Alaska's military strategic importance cannot be overestimated nowadays. Russia has found itself I unfavorable position after signing the June 1990 USSR — USA agreement on the sea space demarcation line, by which 70% of the Bering Sea water basin were to transferred to the United States. Russia's activities in the Arctic and its claim for considerable part of the Arctic waters are met with growing opposition by other countries, including the nonArctic. Over 20 states have already declared their readiness to directly participation in developing the Arctic ocean shelf. The advanced countries, such as the USA, England, Germany, Japan, Norway, have already worked out technologies for an oil and gas recovery in the ice conditions from the depths of over 2 kilometers. The Chinese bought from Ukraine the world biggest non<nuclear ice breaker, Xuelong (The Snow Dragon), and decided to build new ice breakers. Denmark, Norway and other states give lots of funding to the scientific field researches in the Arctic. 3. The United States and its allies, aiming at limiting Russia and using the legal uncertainty of the huge Arctic territories, are increasingly active in their support of internationalization of its waters and shelves, claiming, it «…is the region where the law has no force and which is able to become the source of a conflict because of speeding up «race for the North Pole». The western media, duplicating the thesis of inevitability of aggravated struggle for the Arctic, picture Russia in dark tones; it, they say, wishes to capture this region, though has no resources, nor technologies to develop a shelf, while the Russian North inhabitants are the bunch of drunkards deprived of the blessings of the civilization and, complemented by the others, destroying fragile northern nature. 4. Russia's northern borders should be (and are going to be) strengthened. By 2020, the additional measures are planned to safeguard economic and political interests of the country in the region. They include building up the military bases or establishing the «Arctic special troops». There is a document envisaged strengthening the Federal Security Service border guard forces, improving the Russian Arctic border coast guard service and employing the necessary military grouping of general purpose. The planned measures are more than substantiated by the Arctic recent speedy militarization. Canada declared to set up by 2012 the Arctic Navy, including 6 to 8 icelass battleships. The European Union develops its own military structures in the Northern Europe and increases its military presence in the Arctic. The NATO stages its military exercises in the territory of Norway and the adjoining Arctic waters.



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