According to a story from the Wall Street Journal on Thursday, President Donald Trump has repeatedly asked his top aides “with varying degrees of seriousness” how he could buy Greenland. Setting aside the fact that this story posits that Manhattan as “the world’s most famous island,” we don’t have to be talking about how our country’s president is shopping around for his own Louisiana Purchase.
This four-bylined story reports that Trump apparently floats the idea of acquiring Greenland (emphasis mine) “in meetings, at dinners and in passing conversations.” And, surprise surprise, some of his advisers are supporting the concept!
From the Journal:
In meetings, at dinners and in passing conversations, Mr. Trump has asked advisers whether the U.S. can acquire Greenland, listened with interest when they discuss its abundant resources and geopolitical importance and, according to two of the people, has asked his White House counsel to look into the idea.
Some of his advisers have supported the concept, saying it was a good economic play, two of the people said, while others dismissed it as a fleeting fascination that will never come to fruition. It is also unclear how the U.S. would go about acquiring Greenland even if the effort were serious.
Greenland is a mostly autonomous part of Denmark — the Danish government handles foreign and national security matters. And Trump is going to Denmark is September, but the Journal reported that the trip is unrelated to his fascination with the island of about 57,000 people.
The most interesting — and I use that lightly — part of the Journal’s reporting is that the sparsely populated (and melting) island is important to American national security. An old defense treaty between the U.S. and Denmark allows the American military to maintain “virtually unlimited rights” in the country, including Thule Air Base, which is about 750 miles north of the Arctic Circle.
I could see Trump and his allies eventually positing the idea of acquiring Greenland in an effort to Better Secure The Homeland. But it’s unclear how long it will take the president to get there or “how far the president might push the idea” of buying another country.