Skip to main content

Buying Greenland: Trump’s Gaffe With a Point


President of the United States of America, Donald Trump, has entertained the idea of purchasing Greenland from it’s current owner Denmark. Both the Danish and the autonomic Greenland’s governments have promptly dismissed the idea. The spokesman of Greenland’s government stated that "Greenland is not for sale." But is that actually true?

China has been heavily buying in to Greenland and its vast natural resources. The true quantity of the resources is only slowly getting revealed as the continental ice is melting due to the climate change. At Kvanefjeld Chinese companies are planning to begin mining both Uranium and rare earth elements, the production if which China is trying to monopolize. The Chinese companies are also investing in zinc and iron mines on the island.

The Chinese investments in export commodities production in Africa have always been coupled with a complex scheme of co-operation. These deals connect the economic investments to infrastructure projects and political deals to allow the Beijing to wield considerable leverage over the respective host nations. China has already used these connections to force its clients to vote according to Chinese interests in the UN. Some parts of the Chinese built infrastructure can also be used for deployment of the Chinese troops to the region if a need should arise.

Danish democracy and civil society are naturally much more robust than the ones in any African country. After all, the Kingdom of Denmark was established in 980. But even purely economical domination of Greenland would still be a victory to the Chinese government, especially as rare earth minerals will be a crucial strategic asset in the future. Greenland’s deposits joining the Chinese holdings in China, Mongolia, Afghanistan and Africa would make the situation rather dire for the West.

If China was given a possibility to control the ports and airports in Greenland, it would cause serious problems for NATO operations in the northern European theater. The Greenland – Iceland- UK (GIUK) gap has long been the focus point of naval planning for the possible showdown between NATO and Russia in Europe.

A Chinese destroyer in the Baltic Sea

On the other hand Greenland could also be used to stage operations aimed to disable the Russian forces in the Arctic. These forces include the vital nuclear bastion at Kola-peninsula. While China and Russia are reluctant allies at the moment, there is no doubt that at some point in the future the dragon will try to subdue the elderly bear in the neighborhood.

While the USA has a military presence in Greenland, it currently has very little control over the strategically important resources there and Chinese offers may be too tempting for the largely autonomic Greenland government and the cash strapped leaders in Copenhagen.


Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Quick guide to identifying the Russian tanks Part 1: main platforms and T-72 variants

As most of the western nations have reduced their inventories to a few or mostly one type of main battle tank model in their active inventories, the myriad of tank platforms and distinct versions employed by the Russian armed forces may feel overwhelming. Here is a quick guide to identifying Russian MBTs. When you come across an image (or the actual thing), follow the steps to identify it properly.



Family of the tankRussian Armed Forces currently operates, or at least storage, the following tank platforms/families: -T-55 (<2000 in storage) -T-62 (2000 in storage) -T-64 (2000 in storage) -T-72 (2000 active duty, 8000 in storage) -T-80 (2000 active duty, 5000 in storage) -T-90 (350 active duty, 600 in storage) -T-14 (20 in field testing)
So how can you identify what type of a tank are you looking at?
There are two features that can be used to distinguishing the tank families: The roadwheel placement and the exhaust ports. The older and smaller T-55 and T-62 have five roadwheels in their suspe…

T-90M ”Breakthrough” the Armata Russia has to live with

The T-14 Armata was supposedly going to be the next main combat vehicle platform that would replace the dozen or so main battle tank versions currently in the Russian service. The development and testing process of the T-14 has been difficult and the manufacturer Uralvagonzavod will deliver the first five pre-production vehicles in the first half of 2020. It’s quite a far cry from the originally planned production run of 2300 Armata’s by the end of 2020.

First newly-built T-90M tanks with redesigned turrets and engines will be delivered for state tests alongside the initial batch of T-14’s. The T-90M, that shouldn’t be confused with the export version upgrade package T-90MS, is actually very capable package with significantly less complicated problems than the more radical T-14.


The T-90M offers the same firepower and mobility with most likely slightly superior optics and situational awareness compared to the Armata. With the conventional layout, many of the camera, display and stabili…

Quick Guide to Turkish Tanks

The Turkish Armed Forces posses the largest tank fleet in Europe, only dwarfed by the Russian reserve stocks beyond the Ural mountains. The Turkish fleet is a mixture of American and German armor with indigenous upgrades.
The Turkish active tank fleet is currently composed of: - 354 Leopard 2A4 tanks - 397 Leopard 1A3 tanks with 170 upgraded to Leopard 1T standard with new fire control system - 932 M60 Pattons, out of which 104 are aging A1 variants, 658 are A3 TTS and 170 are fully modernized M60T Sabra-models, upgraded with Israeli technology. - 758 M48 Pattons with an unknown distribution of M48A3 and M48A5T2 variants.
Out of these tank models the Leopard 2A4 and the M60T Sabra are the most capable ones. Both are clearly superior to the aging Soviet T-72, T-62 and T-55 tanks primarily fielded by the Syrian Arab Army. Both the Leopard 2A4 and M60T have roughly comparable 120 mm main guns, capable of knocking out all armor in the neighborhood.
Both the Leopard 1 and the M48 show the…