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Arctic Security

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There is renewed attention on the Arctic region in this new era of 'great power competion'. Both Russia and China are increasing their involvement in Arctic affairs. The region has become an area of competion due to the effects of global warming. Climate change has opened up new navigation routes for shipping, the fishing industry, and greater access to mineral resources. In addition, the Arctic has an increased importance as a region for military power projection.

The Arctic region spans eight countries and three continents. It is the home of four million people from several different nations.

News Reports about Competition in the Arctic

August 2021. "Send the Coast Guard into the Cold", Proceedings, U.S. Naval Institute. A case is made for creating a U.S. Arctic Command and letting a Coast Guard admiral lead it.

July 27, 2021. "USAF to Increase Arctic Investment as Strategy, Wargames Outline Needs in Region", by Brian W. Everstine, Air Force Magazine.

July 14, 2021. "Russia's 2021 National Security Strategy: Cool Change Forecasted for the Polar Regions", by Elizabeth Buchanan, RUSI. The latest national security document from Russia signals a shift in its strategic priorities. A troubling development.

June 11, 2021. "The Phantom of Arctic Misgovernance", by Joshua Tallis, War on the Rocks. This article examines the governance and security institutions that provide for stability and security in the Arctic region.

June 9, 2021. "DOD Announces Center to Collaborate, Advanced Shared Interests in Arctic Region", DoD News.

March 30, 2021. Partners, Competitors, or a Little of Both?, by Jim Townsend and Andrea Kenall-Taylor, Center for Naval Analysis (CNAS). Topics include the origins of great power competition, Chinese and Russian priorities in the Arctic, security implications, and recommendations for Russia-China cooperation in the Arctic. PDF, 22 pages.

SOC and the Arctic

July 24, 2021. "Arctic Special Operations", by Brig. Gen. Shawn Satterfield, Royal United Services Institute. A presentation by the commander of Special Operations Command North (SOCNORTH).

June 10, 2021. "A Permanent Detachment of SOF in the American High North to Answer Near-Peer Adversarsies' Modernization and Deployments", by Zachary Lavengood, Modern War Institute at West Point.

June 8, 2021. "Competing in the Arctic Through Indigenous Group Engagement and Special Reconnaissance Activities", by Colonel Kevin D. Stringer, Modern War Institute at West Point. Stringer provides a look at how US Army Special Forces can better compete with near-peer adversaries in the polar regions by concentrating on regular engagement with indigenous peoples and focusing on special reconnaissance.

March 19, 2021. "U.S. Army Arctic Strategy - 2021", SOF News. The U.S. Army has announced its new Arctic strategy that outlines how it will generate, train, organize, and equip its forces to secure U.S. national interests and maintain regional stability.

March 17, 2018. "Arctic Edge 18 and SOCNORTH", SOF News. Special Operations Command - North conducted an exercise that encompassed long-range movements in severe weather conditions over treacherous terrain.


Coast Guard Polar Security Cutter (Polar Icebreaker) Program. Background and Issues for Congress, Congressional Research Service, CRS RL34391, July 1, 2021.

Changes in the Arctic: Background and Issues for Congress, Congressional Research Service, CRS R41153, February 2021, PDF, 140 Pages.

Report to Congress: Department of Defense Arctic Strategy, Department of Defense, June 2019, PDF, 19 pages.


April 23, 2021. "Nordic Defense Policy and Arctic Security", Brussels Sprouts, CNAS.
One hour long podcast featuring Svein Efjestad, Janne Kuusela, Andrea Kendall-Taylor, and Jim Townsend.

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