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  • this video was made possible by skill share learned for more than 25,000 classes for free for two months at S K A l dot s h slash Real life floor 27 What if the United States purchased Greenland?

  • If you haven't heard, it's kind of been in the news of it recently.

  • But the US being interested in the island is old news.

  • America has had a long history of purchasing land like the Louisiana territory in 18 03 Florida in 18 19 California, Nevada, Utah and Arizona in 18 48 with money and guns in Alaska in 18 67 the U.

  • S has been steadily buying up European properties in North America like it's monopoly for centuries.

  • And since Greenland is in the neighborhood to, there's been an interest for a long time.

  • Greenland is geographically a part of the North American continent, after all, although it's essentially belonged to European powers for a millennium.

  • Currently, Greenland is owned by the Kingdom of Denmark and represents what is by far the largest remaining European possession in the Western Hemisphere.

  • Greenland itself is the world's largest island, and it's roughly 50 times bigger than Denmark itself is.

  • And because of it, Denmark is, surprisingly, the 12th largest country in the world, ahead of some other places that you'd assume would be bigger, like Saudi Arabia, Mexico or Indonesia for a sense of scale on just how huge Greenland is.

  • Here's a map with it placed over the United States, where the southern tip starts in the southern tip of Texas and stretches all the way up past Minneapolis in into Ontario, Canada.

  • Greenland is gigantic, but for all of its massive size, it has an inversely tiny population.

  • The island is home to a mere 56,000 people, most of whom are indigenous in you.

  • It's about one third of Greenland's population lives in the town of Nuke, the largest town which serves at the island's capital city and is home to 18,000 people.

  • Most of the economy is currently based around fishing, while the ownership of Greenland is technically a net negative.

  • Currently for the Danish government, you see, Greenland is an autonomous region that exists inside of the Kingdom of Denmark.

  • This means that Greenland controls their own police, their own immigration and borders, sets their own laws, has their own legal system and essentially governs themselves, while Denmark maintains control over foreign affairs, defense of the island and monetary policy.

  • Greenland couldn't exactly survive without the assistance of Denmark, however, because Denmark currently provides a subsidy to the island to the tune of 3.4 billion kronor per year, or about $505 million.

  • This yearly subsidy accounts for half of the revenue of the local Greenlandic governments, which employs nearly one out of every five people on the island.

  • This means that Greenland is extremely dependent upon Denmark to provide financial assistance.

  • While $505 million is a lot of money for Greenland, it's a pretty tiny amount for the $350 billion GDP economy of Denmark.

  • This then begs the question.

  • Why would the US be interested in paying money for a net negative asset like Greenland?

  • Interestingly enough, the United States has been interested in buying or acquiring Greenland since at least 18 67 when the country purchased Alaska.

  • The US secretary of state of the time, William H.

  • Seward, who negotiated the Alaskan purchase with the Russian Empire, considered the idea of America, also annexing both Greenland and Iceland worthy of serious consideration, he wrote an entire report on the potential benefits of American expansion toe both islands.

  • But in the end he never made an official offer to Denmark.

  • But that wasn't the end.

  • In 1910, a scheme floated around inside of the U.

  • S.

  • Government.

  • Some Danes had approached the U.

  • S ambassador in Copenhagen with a bizarre proposal.

  • The United States, which trade the island of Mindanao in the Philippines, which was a US colony of the time with Denmark in exchange for Greenland and the Danish West Indies.

  • Denmark would then trade Mindanao to Germany in exchange for northern Schleswig being returned to Denmark.

  • As convoluted as that is, it didn't really work out that way because the world decided to fight.

  • World War One in Germany gave Denmark back northern Schleswig for free anyway, but the US wasn't about to give up on buying Greenland just yet, But First America had to buy another Danish property, the Danish West Indies.

  • This was the last and most recent territorial acquisition that America has paid for.

  • In 1917, they paid $25 million for them, or about $500 million in today's money.

  • They became the U.

  • S Virgin Islands in America, grew temporarily satisfied with buying up Denmark's colonies until another world war happened, where America occupied Greenland to prevent it from falling into the hands of the Germans After the war ended, America didn't really want to leave, and they offered Denmark $100 million or $1.3 billion today for sale.

  • Greenland was considered a very strategic location during the Cold War for America to control for a number of reasons.

  • Because a Greenland is located almost exactly at the halfway point between Washington, D.

  • C and Moscow be, it's actually very close to the Soviet Union.

  • Across the Arctic Circle, the largest Soviet port in the Arctic, remains was only 1800 kilometers away, and air bases in 1946 would give American bombers enough range to attack it and see it could be used as a shield to defend the continental US from.

  • And a missile early warning system could detect a Soviet ICBM launch Before they were to ever strike the American mainland.

  • Denmark refused to sell the island in America's first official offer, but Greenland was strategic enough that the U.

  • S.

  • Established the Tooley Air Force Base in the North anyway, which in the 19 sixties grew to have over 10 1000 service members present.

  • And it overshadowed Nuke to become the island's largest settlement at that time, 25% of Greenland's population where American military service members.

  • However, after the end of the Cold War, the strategic significance of both Greenland and the airbase began to decline to the point where today, truly airbase is home to only 600 service members.

  • But that still begs the question, though, as to why America would want to buy the island in 2019, there are a few reasons to consider.

  • First of all, the potential purchase would be the largest territorial acquisition in American history, even over shadowing the Louisiana purchase in 18 03 But most importantly, Greenland is going to become vastly more important later on in the 21st century.

  • It's no surprise that the planet is warming up and the ice sheets on Greenland are in retreat.

  • Part of why there so little people and development on the island is because of the island's geography.

  • I mean, just look at this map.

  • 80% of the entire island is covered by this big sheet of ice, and it's over two kilometers thick.

  • However, it's melting.

  • While the pace of global warming is set toe overwhelmingly become a net negative for humanity in general, it does come with its certain potential benefits.

  • The Arctic has always been a region of the world that's rich in natural resource is.

  • But it's also always been incredibly difficult and expensive to access because of the region, severely cold temperatures and whether the U.

  • S Geological Survey, for example, has estimated that 22% of all the world's undiscovered and accessible oil and gas reserves are located in the Arctic.

  • That's a about 412 billion barrels worth, or over 1.5 times the amount of all the oil located in Saudi Arabia.

  • When the ice melts and the cost of mining goes down, whoever controls Greenland controls the biggest piece of land in the Arctic and controls the biggest claim toe all of that sweet, sweet oil and gas.

  • And if that's not lucrative enough, there's also the Northwest Passage to consider.

  • Here is a map of what the route looks like.

  • For centuries, the sea route has been largely impassable because of sea ice blocking the way.

  • But with a warming climate, the route is becoming navigable during the summer months, and it could potentially become a very lucrative shipping route that could even rival the Panama Canal.

  • But Canada claims sovereignty over most of the passage as internal Canadian waters.

  • The United States and other countries disagree with that, and they consider the route as an international straits.

  • So if America were to come into possession of Greenland, along with Alaska on the other side, they would control both sides of the entrance and exit and perhaps be able to enforce their viewpoint more easily upon Canada.

  • Greenland itself is also for full of rich, rare earth, mineral and metal deposits in their accessibility has only been going up in 2012.

  • The entire island of Greenland have only a single operating mine, but now, in 2019, there are over 100 plan to be constructed.

  • Whoever controls Greenland today is operating it at a net negative, but the investment potential is enormous.

  • Whoever controls Greenland in 100 years from now will be in the best strategic position possible for the future Arctic Resource Race.

  • And some have even called Greenland the most strategic piece of land to control in the entire world for the future.

  • And countries besides Denmark are growing aware of it.

  • In 2017, China offered to buy an abandoned naval base on the island, but Denmark refused.

  • In 2019, the United States made another official offer to purchase the entire island again, but Denmark again refused.

  • This all leads us toe.

  • One common question, though.

  • What is Greenland actually worth?

  • F T.

  • Alphaville placed the estimated purchase price for America at $1.1 trillion largely owing to the expected value of potential oilfields, rare earth mineral deposits in real estates.

  • If that actually happened, Denmark could both immediately pay off its entire national debt and still have over $600 billion to play with.

  • Meanwhile, for America, the $1.1 trillion price would likely just be stacked up upon the national debts, increasing it up to $21.1 trillion at the presence.

  • America would also have to take up the responsibilities of subsidizing the island with at least $500 million a year to keep the island's economy going.

  • The question is, would the cost actually be worth it for either Denmark or America?

  • I'll leave that discussion for the comments now.

  • If America did actually buy Greenland, they most likely have to come up with a new flag, and designing one is harder than you think.

  • Luckily, there's a class on skill share that could help D k n G studios who have actually done design work on Star Wars and back to the future.

  • Teach this fantastic course that walks you through mastering Adobe Illustrator and speeding up your workflow so that you can design your own arts.

  • But this is just one of over 25 1000 classes on skill share, which each teach you something that you can use for your job for school or just for fun.

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  • MOTION GRAPHICS With Kurt's exact and digital illustration using procreate, all of which you can download offline on the IOS or Android APS, you can learn from any of these more than 25,000 classes for free for two months by signing up at S K A l dot s h slash Real life floor 27 then it's only $10 per month.

  • Afterwards, you'll be supporting real life floor while you're at it.

  • And thank you for watching.

  • I'll see you again next week.

this video was made possible by skill share learned for more than 25,000 classes for free for two months at S K A l dot s h slash Real life floor 27 What if the United States purchased Greenland?

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What If America Actually Buys Greenland?

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    林宜悉 posted on 2020/11/12
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