Friday, December 13, 2013


Canada Plans Claim That Would Include North Pole

US Coast Guard Cutter Healy. Photo by Henry Dick (National Science Foundation), Wikimedia Commons, Public Domain. 

"TORONTO (AP) — Canada plans to make a claim to the North Pole in an effort to assert its sovereignty in the resource-rich Arctic, the country's foreign affairs minister said Monday.
John Baird said the government has asked scientists to work on a future submission to the United Nations claiming that the outer limits of the country's continental shelf include the pole, which so far has been claimed by no one."
EDITOR'S NOTE: It is at best only technically correct that the North Pole "so far has been claimed by no one."  As reported on this site previously Russia planted a plaque on the bottom of the Arctic Ocean as a publicity stunt and has announced its intention to file a claim on the North Pole essentially making the same claim as Canada that its continental shelf extends to,or beyond the Pole. Canada's announcement is simply a politically motivated counter claim. Neither claimant has the scientific data yet to support such a claim, and once the science data is submitted it could take longer than 5 years for the UN to verify the data. Even then that doesn't settle the issue but only opens and guides bilateral or multilateral negotiations. 
 Meanwhile the Canadian claim provides fodder to the Russian grist mill of propaganda preparing their population to fund a vastly expanded military presence in the High Arctic as if Canada's unarmed Coast Guard was somehow a threat to Russian national security. Things are heating up in the High Arctic and we aren't speaking of Global warming. The Bear wants the turf, pretty much all of it and it is looking like the Bear is intending to take it with a combination of heavily financed litigation and serious military muscle specially suited to the region. Canada, the United States, Russia and others have Exclusive Economic Zones (EEZs) recognized under current international law in the Arctic Ocean. It is doubtful that the Bear intends to roll back any of that. But the Bear clearly intends to extinguish international waters in the High Arctic and push its own expanded EEZ right to the boundary with the other Arctic States EEZs. The United States has thousands of miles of Arctic Ocean shore line. Where is the United States in all this? 
The one really operational icebreaker of the U.S. Coast Guard is presently providing services at both poles, supporting Antarctic  and Arctic operations sequentially . The Coast Guard has one other periodically operational old ice breaker functioning on cannibalized parts from a sister ship. The Coast Guard is beginning to openly acknowledge the need for a year round Coast Guard presence in the High Arctic. Of Course the Texas Congressional delegation has been asking for a "persistent Coast Guard presence on the Rio Grande" to help combat Mexican Drug Cartel activity for about the last four years. The budget response to fund either of these expanded Coast Guard presence operations has been , to put it kindly, underwhelming. With the Dragon expanding along our Pacific sea lines of communications and a hungry Bear roaming the High Arctic, and pirates pestering our Indian Ocean trade routes the major English speaking nations continue to shrink their naval / coast guard budgets. 
 Related to Canada's Announcement we found the below linked news feature:

Putin vows to beef up Arctic military presenceBy VLADIMIR ISACHENKOV Associated Press  American Admiralty Books Safety & Privacy Policies       

"MOSCOW (AP) — Expanding Russia's military presence in the Arctic region is among the top priorities for the nation's armed forces, President Vladimir Putin said Tuesday.
Speaking at a meeting with the top military brass, Putin said that Russia is "intensifying the development of that promising region" and needs to have "every lever for the protection of its security and national interests there." 
To Read the full story click here:


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