America Spends Millions of Taxpayers’ Money in “Battle for the Arctic”
USA – February 15, 2019
After the formal end of the longest shutdown in U.S. history, Congress seems to be so weak that they almost capitulated to President Trump over his proposed bills. The White House announced on Thursday that Trump will sign a compromise bill to fund border security, but he will declare a national emergency to build the wall. Both the House and the Senate passed the bill Thursday evening. This looks more like a Trump victory even though it was very expensive. American taxpayers will pay for it, in any case.
What was also important is that after several weeks of discussions, the bipartisan conference committee negotiating funding for the Department of Homeland Security and other agencies whose funding expires Friday night eventually finished its work, including $1.375 billion for physical barriers at the southern border. Six other appropriations bills must also be taken into account, which were passed to fund the roughly 25% of the federal government that shut down for a record-breaking 35 days.
Apart from the wall issue (and let’s be honest: American society is already bored with the wall issue, just as it is with the witch hunt against so-called “Russian interference”), a number of interesting bills have been adopted for American taxpayers to fund, including “funding for a new Coast Guard Polar Security Cutter.”
The Polar Security Cutter Program is actually the program that was designed to modernize the United States Coast Guards aging fleet of icebreakers. The fleet has aged so bad that it currently consists of only one operational heavy icebreaker, the USCGC Polar Star, and one medium icebreaker, the USCGC Healy. America is considered to be one of the strongest and most powerful nations on the planet, and they only have two working icebreakers.
The program says both ships are planned to be replaced by 3 heavy and 3 medium icebreakers. The new fleet of icebreakers, when it’s ready, will allow the USCG to perform missions in the Arctic such as defense operations and readiness, defending U.S. sovereignty and interests, national security activities and maritime safety, PWCS (Ports, waterways, and coastal security), research, search and rescue, and logistic support and vessel escort.
In terms of technologies, we should also mention the capabilities of these ships: For example, the heavy polar icebreaker should be able to break through 6.5 feet of ice at 3 knots (3.5 mph), independently break through ice that is 21 feet thick, and be able to operate for 80 days without replenishment.
This is just enough to defend American interests in the region, even though such heavy machines might harm the environment and rare species. At the same time, the medium icebreaker should be able to break ice not less than 4.5 feet thick at 3 kts and operate for 80 days without replenishment.
Both types can be considered war machines, as they will be capable of surface defense using removable weapons and will be capable of be fitted with additional sensors and weapons. The ships will be equipped with surface and air search radars, will be capable of communications with other Department of Defense, Coast Guard and National Science Foundation ships and aircraft. It certainly doesn’t look like these vessels will serve scientific interests.
This year the program will receive up to $675 million of funding. And even despite the fact the first icebreaker will be funded by the US Navy, it’s pretty obvious the five other ships will be funded by the ordinary taxpayers. That is half the price of the wall (the estimated amount of money to be spent on it is $1.375 billion). So, why would Washington war hawks want to spend that much money on the Arctic?
The reason is as simple as it is obvious: The Arctic region poses strategic importance for the Deep State and the corporations that support it. A wild kind of capitalism would lead Americans into the new era of the “exploration” of the Arctic, which should rather be called “exploitation.”
With the help of these monstrous machines, America can dig into the natural resources of the Arctic, exploit them and sell them to nations that would never dream of such plans. America wants to become hegemonic in this region that, apart from the obvious harm to the environment, could bring an un-balance in the system of geopolitical coordinates.
This is what Congress stands for today, and they’re not even hiding their plans, and taxpayers will be the ones paying.
“The reality is that the United States has ignored the Arctic,” said Rep. John Garamendi, D-Calif., who has advocated for an expanded icebreaker fleet. “We have forfeited what will be the major sea route between Asia and Europe. Control of the ocean will be ceded to Russia and China.”
Thus, next time you hear about the need for this program, bear in mind you’re being manipulated by the war hawks dreaming of world hegemony, and this is the only thing your money will go towards.