While the Belt and Road features two components (land and sea), the fact is that they are inextricably connected. Rails, ports and other civilization-building practices have given this design a power and flexibility to adapt to every nation’s chosen developmental pathways.
Washington’s policy of truculence in the Arctic has resulted in alienation of badly-needed allies and the firming of resolve by Russia and China to continue development of the Northern Sea shipping route.
The dream of Governor Gilpin and Tsar Nicholas II to unite both worlds new and old with rail will occur, as long as the west chooses to take history seriously and not sleepwalk into world war once more.
The gradual militarization of the region is a reality. There are two options here. One is turning the Arctic into a hotbed where a spark could kindle a big fire. The other launching a full-fledged dialogue to address security issues related to the region.