Accession Number : ADA184793

Title :   Sea Control in the Arctic; a Soviet Perspective.

Descriptive Note : Final rept.,

Corporate Author : NAVAL WAR COLL NEWPORT RI

Personal Author(s) : Egan,Dennis M ; Orr,David W

PDF Url : ADA184793

Report Date : 20 Apr 1987

Pagination or Media Count : 55

Abstract : This paper exposes the ominous Soviet capability to outflank the US Maritime Strategy by exploiting sea control in the Arctic Ocean. This a recent development resulting from a long term effort by the Soviet Union to gain access to the immense natural resources of the Siberian region by constructing an inter-modal transportation system which links the Trans-Siberian Railroad to various northward flowing rivers and port facilities of embarkation servicing the Soviet Northern Sea Route. By building an unprecendented ice-strengthened fleet of nuclear and conventionally powered icebreakers, naval combatants and cargo ships, they have opened the Northern Sea route to virtually year-round operation. This has been coupled to an infra-structure of specialized lighterage and handling systems to more cargo quickly through remote Arctic areas. Although the primary incentives for this development have been economic, the strategic implications are frightening. In the Atlantic, the Pacific and the Mediterranean, concentric circles of Soviet defensive power radiate outward from the motherland but are effectively contained by US and NATO military power. Only in the Arctic van the Soviets project defensive forces virtually unopposed because the West continues to envision the icy polar seas as impenetrable geographic barriers.

Descriptors :   *STRATEGIC AREAS, *MARINE TRANSPORTATION, *ARCTIC OCEAN, *MILITARY TRANSPORTATION, *USSR, MILITARY APPLICATIONS, ACCESS, SIBERIA, NATURAL RESOURCES, DEFENSE PLANNING, ICEBREAKERS, MOBILITY, THREATS, NAVAL VESSELS, GEOPOLITICS, MERCHANT VESSELS, MILITARY STRATEGY

Subject Categories : Naval Surface Warfare

Distribution Statement : APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE