STRATEGIC COMPETITION IN THE ARCTIC Cover Image

STRATEGIC COMPETITION IN THE ARCTIC
STRATEGIC COMPETITION IN THE ARCTIC

Author(s): Florin Diaconu
Subject(s): Politics / Political Sciences, Security and defense, Geopolitics, Peace and Conflict Studies
Published by: Carol I National Defence University Publishing House
Keywords: The Arctic; strategic interests; sea routes; natural resources; strategic competition; military power; sea shelf; Russia; USA; Arctic Council.
Summary/Abstract: Along the past few centuries, the Arctic has on several occasions been the scene for intense strategic competition and/or strategic conflict. First of all, in the Age of Great Geographic Discoveries, several competing European Powers poured a lot of resources into an effort aimed at finding the so-called Northwestern Passage. Later on, in both World Wars,the Arctic was an area used by some of the Western Powers to send arms and ammunition to Russia. In the context of the Cold War, both superpowers tried a lot to operate in and control the Arctic. Nowadays, in a dramatically changed environmental context, access to the Arctic is becoming easier than ever before, strongly boosting the strategic competition of the great powers in the region. Several important actors of the international arena are now trying to expand their presence in the region, aiming at least three major goals: strategic control of vitally important sea routes, strategic control of natural resources in the region, and blocking or containing the presence and actions of their strategic competitors.