“Frozen Frontiers, China’s Great Power Ambitions in the Polar Regions” –CSIS

Adapted from a 2021 Chinese environmental evaluation report submitted to the Secretariat of the Antarctic Treaty. Source CSIS

The Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) has an excellent overview of Chinese interests in the polar regions.

Chinese activities in the Arctic have gotten a lot of coverage, but their activities in Antarctic have been underreported and are, I believe, of much greater concern long term. Their coverage of China’s efforts in Antarctic is at the end of post. It is less extensive than that of China’s Arctic activities, but is perhaps the best I have seen.

China’s activities in the Arctic are just a part of their progress toward making Russia a client state. The relationship is not one of equals, it is very unbalanced, akin to Fascist Italy’s relationship to Nazi Germany. Ultimately Russia will be a victim of China’s determination to recover any territory that was once part of China. There is a lot of Asian Russia that China thinks should be theirs.

China is pouring assets into Antarctic, including potentially dual use facilities. They are setting themselves up to claim parts of the continent once the current treaty expires. This is probably going to put them in conflict with the US and some of our allies.

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