Trump Wants to Buy Greenland, One of EU’s OCTs, from Denmark
It remains unclear how seriously the US President has floated the idea.
US President Donald Trump has brought up multiple times the possibility of the United States buying Greenland, one of the EU’s Overseas Countries and Territories (OCT), from the Kingdom of Denmark.
Trump has been serious about exploring the possibility of acquiring Greenland on the model under which the US bought Alaska from Russia in 1867, leading the White House counsel’s office to look into it, reports in American media say.
Trump’s interest in buying Greenland was first reported by The Wall Street Journal, which revealed that the American President had raised the question during various occasions such as meetings and dinners.
According to the report, researching the possibility led to a division among Trump’s aides, with some deeming it a great economic opportunity, and others arguing that it was a passing fancy.
People outside the Trump Administration have mentioned a Greenland purchase as a possible legacy builder for Trump – not unlike US President Dwight Eisenhower’s statehood for Alaska.
According to one of WSJ sources, at a dinner last spring, Trump told his aides he had been advised to consider buying Greenland because Denmark had financial trouble for having to support the world’s largest island, which is one of the countries of the Kingdom of Denmark (alongside Denmark and the Faroe Islands).
“What do you guys think about that? Do you think it would work?” Trump reportedly asked those present.
According to the source, Trump appeared interest in Greenland because of its natural resources.
America’s first consideration of the possibility of acquiring Greenland goes back to 1867 when Secretary of State William Seward, who brokered the purchase of Alaska from the Russian Empire the same year, showed interest in the idea.
An American attempt to buy Greenland from Denmark is said to have occurred right after World War II, in 1946, during the Presidency of Harry Truman.
Greenland, an autonomous Danish territory, has been home to Thule Air Base, the US military’s northernmost base, located about 1,200 kilometers (750 miles) above the Arctic Circle, since 1951.
It is a radar and listening post with a Ballistic Missile Early Warning System that can warn of incoming intercontinental ballistic missiles and reaches thousands of miles into Russian territory.
Greenland, with a total population of 56,000 people, has been a member of the Association of the Overseas Countries and Territories of the European Union (OCTA) since 2000, a body comprising 22 members. The citizens of Greenland are also EU citizens.
(Banner image: Wikipedia)