Tag Archives: U.S.

The Arctic Circle: China’s Emerging ‘Polar Silk Road’

DW Documentary (April 1, 2023) – Following the rise of China’s power in Africa, are we on the verge of seeing a Chinese Arctic? Certainly, the country is seeking to expand its influence in this geopolitically important area. The US is worried, while Russia smells business.

But what are China’s plans for the region? In 2013, the “Yong Sheng” made history: It was the first Chinese cargo ship to reach Europe via the Arctic. This promising route, which Beijing soon dubbed the “Polar Silk Road,” made the “Yong Sheng” a symbol of Chinese ambitions in the far north. Increasingly self-confident, China is now expanding its sphere of influence bit by bit in the Arctic – a place of high geopolitical significance.

The country’s influence is spreading, with projects that include investments in gas resources in the Russian Arctic on the Yamal Peninsula. In January 2018, China initiated the “Polar Silk Road” project. Now, the country is pursuing a rapprochement with Iceland and Norway through businessmen. China maintains a research station on Spitsbergen and has even started to define itself publicly as a country “close to the Arctic” – a status from which China hopes to derive new rights.

The Arctic seems a long way from Beijing. But Chinese president Xi Jinping has understood how important this region is. China’s need for resources is driving Xi Jinping to negotiate with the major Arctic powers, who largely view him with suspicion. The new geopolitics of the Arctic are playing out not only in world capitals and in the media, but also on the ground: Emissaries, entrepreneurs, and mediators are traveling to the strategic region.

This group includes Chinese nationals as well as Norwegians, Icelanders, Swedes and Americans. China is expanding. After “Chinafrica,” will we now also speak of “Chinarctica”? China, it is said, has time on its side. And in the meantime it is openly dreaming of superpower status. The Americans are worried, the Europeans are hesitant and the Russians are eager for investments. But what are China’s real goals?


Energy / Technology: How Close Is Fusion Power?

For the first time, US scientists have achieved a fusion reaction with net energy gain. But the dream of limitless zero-carbon energy is still a long way from reality.

Video timeline: 00:00 – What powers the universe 01:04 – ITER: the biggest experiment in human history 04:28 – What is fusion? 06:38 – Replicating the sun 08:38 – The US breakthrough 13:46 – The investors 20:40 – A new class of magnet 24:30 – Dream or reality?

The FT’s Simon Mundy meets scientists and investors in the UK, France and US, to see how close we really are to commercial fusion power.

Read more at https://on.ft.com/3GJl1JF

Foreign Affairs: The U.S. Vs China Military Bases (WSJ)

Wall Street Journal – The U.S. operates hundreds of foreign military bases. China has only one, but military experts say Beijing is also leveraging over 90 commercial ports. WSJ unpacks what’s on these bases and the countries’ differing strategies to expand their global footprint.

U.S. Lifestyle Rankings: The Best Places To Live In 2022

The 10 Best Places to Live in the U.S. in 2022-2023:

1. Huntsville, Alabama
2. Colorado Springs, Colorado
3. Green Bay, Wisconsin
4. Boulder, Colorado
5. San Jose, California
6. Raleigh and Durham, North Carolina
7. Fayetteville, Arkansas
8. Portland, Maine
9. Sarasota, Florida
10. San Francisco

Housing costs are rising fast and there aren’t enough homes on the market nationwide to meet demand, and anyone looking to move is acutely aware of the competition and high cost to buy or rent a home. The Best Places to Live rankings factor in how the cost of living compares to the area’s median household income, but U.S. News & World Report also broke out the data into its own ranking.

Culture: France-Amérique Magazine – April 2022


April 2022

Pretty in… Green

For Earth Day, April 22, France-Amérique is going vert! Did you know the color green was perceived as evil before it was adopted by environmentalists as a symbol of hope and happiness? The environment is also at the heart of #SaccageParis, a French campaign raising awareness on littering, and the work of photographer Ben Thouard, who captures the sheer power of the waves in Tahiti. Also in this issue, read our interview with the former head of U.N. peacekeeping, Jean-Marie Guéhenno, our investigation on the myths and facts of immigration in France, and our illustrated feature on the Coulée Verte in Paris, the urban park that inspired New York’s High Line!

Read more

Analysis: Threats To U.S. Democracy, Pandemic Economies, Video Games

A selection of three essential articles read aloud from the latest issue of The Economist. This week, how to think about the threat to American democracywhich economies have done best and worst during the pandemic (10:33) and whether video games really are addictive (17:34).

Morning News: Biden-Xi Summit, Europe’s Trains, South Korean Photo-Ops

The meeting between superpower presidents was cordial and careful, but it will take far more than a video call to smooth such frosty relations.

Europe once had an enviable international rail network—one it must revive if the bloc is to meet its climate targets. And the costly and sometimes dangerous lengths South Koreans are going to for flattering photographs.

Political Analysis: The U.S.-China Tussle Over Taiwan

Taiwan has long been a U.S.-China flashpoint, but its tech and military capabilities have come into sharper focus under the Biden administration. WSJ travels to three places on the island to explain how both superpowers could determine Taiwan’s future. Photo: Wally Santana/AP

Analysis: Why China Is Dominating The U.S. In Electric Cars (Video)

The global electric vehicle market is heating up and China wants to dominate. The country has invested at least $60 billion to support the EV industry and it’s pushing an ambitious plan to transition to all electric or hybrid cars by 2035. Tesla entered the Chinese market in 2019 and has seen rapid growth.

China sold roughly one million more EVs than the U.S. in 2020. But there are signs the U.S. is getting more serious about going electric. President Joe Biden announced a goal to reach net-zero emissions by 2050 and investments in green infrastructure. Watch the video to find out how China came to dominate the market and whether it’s too late for the U.S. to catch up.

World News: How To Deal With China, Mexican Border, Global Happiness

A selection of three essential articles read aloud from the latest issue of The Economist. This week, how to deal with ChinaBiden’s border bind (12:01) and how the pandemic has changed the shape of global happiness (27:34). Zanny Minton Beddoes hosts.