The world is not short of hotspots: Syria; North Korea; Libya; Ukraine … But one of the hottest is also one of the coldest – the Arctic, which is rapidly becoming the front line in a new Russian game of expansion.
On Franz Josef Land, an ice-covered, desolate archipelago well into the Arctic circle, Russia has just opened a new military base. If Nato is to respond, which it must, then Britain, positioned at the gateway to the Arctic Ocean, will be at the heart of the showdown.
This little known geo-political battle began almost 20 years ago, when Vladimir Putin came to power. The following year, 2001, Russia submitted an application to the United Nations asserting that a vast unclaimed area of the Arctic Ocean, including the North Pole, should be subject to Moscow’s oversight. Initially rejected, the bid was resubmitted two years ago, and if successful would see Russia’s boundaries enlarged…
Read more at The Telegraph.