Author: Stephen Lezak

Just a few years ago, many observers dismissed this as bluster or symbolism, akin to Russia planting a flag on the North Pole in 2007—14,000 feet below the surface of the Arctic Ocean. But in the last decade, cargo volume along the Northern Sea Route grew by a factor of 15, driven in large part by new gas production on the Yamal Peninsula.“This is absolutely not about mere symbolism,” Klaus Dodds, professor of geography at Royal Holloway, University of London, told me. “This is the Federation making—I think—a very rational decision, which is that in the face of continued sanctions…

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