May 2016

Russia’s Northern Sea Route Ambitions

By Vladislav Inozemtsev

Earlier this month, on April 19, the State Commission on the development of the Arctic Regions convened in Moscow to establish a single company to oversee all the logistics operations in the Russian Far North (, April 19). The move came amidst news reports showing little success, to date, in developing either the infrastructure or the cargo flows on the famous Northern Sea Route (NSR) along Russia’s Arctic coastline (The Independent Barents Observer, April 16).

The Role of Sweden and Finland in NATO’s Defense of the Baltic States

By Luke Coffey and Daniel Kochis

Militarily speaking, the three Baltic States—Estonia, Latvia, and Lithuania—are isolated from other NATO members. It would be extremely difficult, but not impossible, for NATO to respond to an incident in the Baltic region without the acquiescence of non-NATO Finland and Sweden. Russia knows this—and exploits this weakness to its advantage. The U.S. must plan for any contingency in the Baltic region, including one that sees Finland and Sweden refusing to acquiesce to a NATO request for support in a time of war.

U.S.-EU Energy Council

The seventh United States-European Union Energy Council met today in Washington, D.C., chaired by U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, U.S. Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz, EU High Representative/Vice President Federica Mogherini, European Commission Vice President Maros Sefcovic and European Commissioner Miguel Arias Canete.

President Obama: The TPP would let America, not China, lead the way on global trade

By Barack Obama

Over the past six years, America’s businesses have created more than 14 million new jobs. To keep this progress going, we need to pursue every avenue of economic growth. Today, some of our greatest economic opportunities abroad are in the Asia-Pacific region, which is on its way to becoming the most populous and lucrative market on the planet. Increasing trade in this area of the world would be a boon to American businesses and American workers, and it would give us a leg up on our economic competitors, including one we hear a lot about on the campaign trail these days: China.