In July of last year, we followed up on OODA CTO Bob Gourley’s analysis of the Blueprint for a Blue Ocean with the question What Exactly is the PRC up to in the Arctic? The July 2021 report “Exploring the Relationship between China’s Investment in the Arctic and Its National Strategy” by CNA, provided a federally mandated update on Chinese activities in the arctic and the “Chinese Dream.” Subsequently, OODA Loop Contributor Emilio Iasiello looked at the Arctic and China from the perspective of how cyber espionage is likely supporting China’s arctic aspirations. The Economist also provided an update on how the war in Ukraine is changing the Arctic, concluding that “co-operation with Russia has collapsed—and China is ascendant”. Review the details of the current assessment that “the new Arctic…looks set to pit NATO members against China and Russia” here.
Climate change and climate-induced emergencies and crises are also creating newly contested, geopolitical arenas. In February 2021, OODA CTO Bob Gourley reported on the “Blueprint for a Blue Ocean”: In January 2021, the Department of Navy released their Strategic Blueprint for a Blue Arctic. The document outlines their plan to prepare for an increasingly available and navigable Arctic Region. Signed by the Chief of Naval Operations, the Secretary of the Navy, and the Commandant of the Marine Corps, it looks forward twenty years and envisions the requirements to protect American interests in the Arctic.
China considers the Arctic a critical link in its One Belt One Road initiative and is building polar-capable cargo vessels, liquefied natural gas tankers, and nuclear-powered icebreakers. Both China and Russia have increased their military activity in the region and have made numerous attempts to alter the existing Arctic governance. The recently released “Exploring the Relationship between China’s Investment in the Arctic and Its National Strategy” by CNA provides a federally mandated update on Chinese activities in the arctic and the “Chinese Dream.”
It is increasingly evident that China believes the timing is right for it to aggressively push its national interests. One area that often gets overlooked when looking at China’s expansionism is its interests in the Arctic. China’s interest in the area is not a secret, as it has promoted itself as a legitimate “Arctic State” as early as its 2011 Twelfth Five-Year Plan, and in its 2018 Arctic Policy.
Russia has developed a prototype for an unmanned underwater drone for use in Arctic operations. Potential uses include searches for sunken vessels and objects, natural resource exploration, and more. While the drone is fairly simple in design, underwater drones continue to lag behind their land and air-based counterparts in both
Did you know that, by 2022, more advanced fighter jets will be based in Alaska than anywhere else in the world? “Whoever holds Alaska will hold the world,” declared a US general a few years before WWII and before the US conducted its first-ever mass airlift and aerial bombing operations
The arctic is becoming increasingly militarized as countries, including China, jostle for positions and to protect trading lanes and claims of different sorts. And while Canada has downplayed threats from China, it has complained about Chinese disregard for international rules and voiced concerns that China will repeat escalatory tactics in
NATO pilots participating in the massive Trident Juncture NATO exercise near the Russian border lost their GPS navigation signals. According to the Finnish Prime Minister, Russia is likely to blame. While Finland is not a NATO member, it participated in the massive drill that involved around 50,000 personnel. The PM
While the U.S. launches naval exercises with carriers above the arctic circle for the first time since the Cold War, Canada is reflecting growing threats in their decision to purchase submarine hunting frigates. According to a Lockheed Martin Canada VP, this purchase is part of a larger industry movement toward
The U.S. Navy has sent an aircraft carrier into the Norwegian Sea in the arctic circle, the first time since 1991, as part of a NATO exercise. The change is due both to the expanding accessibility of areas once covered by ice and the increased Russian activity and the area
“The head of naval forces in Europe warned that Russia is preparing an underwater battlespace in the Northern Atlantic and that U.S. naval presence is more important now than any time since the fall of the Soviet Union. Adm. James Foggo said in the second episode of his ‘On the