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The U.S. is Late to the Arctic Game

As long as we’ve got some other Arctic news today, there’s also an interesting op/ed in Ontario’s Peterborough Examiner about the “acute embarrassment” of how far behind the United States is in developing a policy for the region at the level of Russia, Canada, and Denmark:

Faced with competition from its old cold war rival in Moscow, Washington may be more than willing to cut a deal that involves both defense and resource sharing.

Last spring U.S. Council on Foreign Relations Fellow Scott Borgerson proposed just such a deal. He suggested a “joint management” arrangement for the Northwest Passage similar to the 1817 Rush-Bagot agreement that demilitarized the Great Lakes.One key element of a deal would be agreements to preserve and manage the Arctic environment in the face of stepped-up international commercial use. – that’s worth pursuing.A Canadian Arctic proposal should be waiting for the next U.S. president when he or she steps into the White House. It would send a signal that Ottawa’s once world-class diplomatic skills have been tuned to 21st-century realities.