Handbook of the Politics of the Arctic
Show Less

Handbook of the Politics of the Arctic

Edited by Leif Christian Jensen and Geir Hønneland

The Arctic has again become one of the leading issues on the international foreign policy agenda, in a manner unseen since the Cold War. Drawing on the perspectives of geo-politics and international law, this Handbook offers fresh insights and perspectives on the most pressing issues, grouped under the headings of political ascendancy, climate and environmental issues, resources and energy, and the response and policies of affected countries.
Buy Book in Print
Show Summary Details
You do not have access to this content

Chapter 28: Where East and West converge: the US embrace of collaborative security for the Arctic

Barry Scott Zellen


Over the centuries, interest in the Arctic and the commercial and strategic potentials of its sea lanes and natural resources has been persistent, from the fur-trading empires of Rupert’s Land and Russian America to our own times. However, climatic conditions have prevented the region’s full potential from being achieved, holding back its development and limiting its contribution to the world economy, making it neither a rimland or a heartland but something more closely resembling what geopolitical theorist Mackinder called ‘Lenaland’ – after the isolated Lena River valley in Russia which captured the unique geostrategic insularity of the Far North, making it possible for the Cold War’s two armed and often hostile superpowers to come face-to-face along their long ice curtain with very little risk of war, in great contrast to the Central Front in the once-divided Germany where a million men stood armed and ready for war for a generation. This long isolation dates back before the dawn of mankind and accounts for the region’s unique fauna, like the polar bear and beluga whale, blending into an environment defined by ice and snow for millennia.

You are not authenticated to view the full text of this chapter or article.

Elgaronline requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books or journals. Please login through your library system or with your personal username and password on the homepage.

Non-subscribers can freely search the site, view abstracts/ extracts and download selected front matter and introductory chapters for personal use.

Your library may not have purchased all subject areas. If you are authenticated and think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

Further information

or login to access all content.