Global warming makes Russia militarize the Arctic
There has not traditionally been a lot of military presence in the Arctic, given as how it's mostly ice and seals. But now that the ice is melting, it's just mostly seals, and those little buggers are shifty. So Russia is sending in the troops.
"Our northern border used to be closed because of ice and a severe climate," said Anton Vasilev, a special ambassador for Russia's Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
"But the ice is going away we cannot leave 20,000 kilometres unwatched. We can't leave ourselves in a position where we are undefended," Vasilev said, in an interview with the Interfax news agency.
This is clearly not just about the effects of increased global warming, but about how we can increase it more in the future. Russia is trying to stake its claim on Arctic oil and gas resources, so the fact that they're now sending two brigades of marine infantry up there — the biggest military force deployed to that region — smacks of protecting what they hope will be their investment. But apparently it's the climate-change-induced ice depletion that made it possible.
How do you think the Sarahs Palin of the world would react if we told them global warming is leading to an increased Russian military presence in the Arctic? I mean, on the one hand, they don't think climate change is a genuine concern. On the other hand, they probably still believe that communism is a real and immediate threat to the American way of life. Now the real threat they think is imaginary is contributing to the imaginary threat they think is real. How do you know who to believe??
Get Grist in your inbox