'Open For Business, Not For Sale': Greenland Tells Trump It's One Deal He Can't Make


Greenland’s government responded on Friday to the news President Donald Trump had shown interest in purchasing the island, saying it’s “not for sale.”

The Wall Street Journal reported the previous day that Trump at various meetings and dinners and in passing conversations has asked advisers whether the U.S. could acquire Greenland, the world’s largest island.

Further, the president has “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.”

Greenland, with a landmass of approximately 836,000 square miles, is an autonomous territory of Denmark located to the east of Canada, between the Arctic and Atlantic oceans.

The island’s population is approximately 56,000, of whom about 90 percent are Inuit natives.

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Greenland’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs tweeted, “we’re open for business, not for sale.”

Most of Greenland’s economic ties are with Europe. Currently, there are no direct commercial flights to the island from North America.

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One reason Greenland may have Trump’s interest is China’s efforts to establish a presence there as part of a wider push throughout the Arctic region.

“While China already has research stations in Iceland and Norway, the nation is looking to expand its footprint into Greenland with a satellite ground station, renovated airport and mining operations,” ABC News reported.

“Those ambitions have alarmed Denmark — as Greenland is a Danish territory — with the Danes publicly expressing concerns with China’s interest in the world’s largest island.”

U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was slated to visit Greenland in May, but postponed the trip due to rising tensions with Iran during that time period.

“We look forward to rescheduling the Secretary’s visit at a time convenient for Greenland, Denmark, and the United States,” the State Department said in a news release at the time.

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“Secretary Pompeo is pleased to announce that the United States intends, after six decades, to reestablish a permanent Department of State presence in Greenland, and we will work together with Congress and Denmark to make this happen as soon as possible.”

Copenhagen sends $591 million to Greenland annually, which makes up about 60 percent of the country’s annual budget.

Trump is scheduled to travel to Denmark in early September, but the trip is unrelated to Greenland.

The Associated Press reported the United States sought to buy the island following World War II in 1946 for $100 million in gold ($1.3 billion in today’s dollars).

Though Denmark, a NATO ally, turned the offer down, it did sign a defense treaty in 1951 allowing the U.S. to construct Thule Air Base and other facilities on the island.

The United States also looked at buying Greenland and Iceland in 1867, the same year it purchased Alaska from Russia.

Luke Coffey, a foreign policy expert with the Heritage Foundation, reported that Greenland is on a pathway to full independence from Denmark.

Greenland was granted home rule in 1979 and self-government in 2009. Copenhagen still oversees the island’s foreign and military affairs.

“For Greenland, the question is not if it will become independent, but when and how,” Coffrey writes. “Few inside Greenland’s government think it is ready now, but Denmark’s official position is that Greenland can become independent whenever it pleases.”

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Randy DeSoto has written more than 2,000 articles for The Western Journal since he joined the company in 2015. He is a graduate of West Point and Regent University School of Law. He is the author of the book "We Hold These Truths" and screenwriter of the political documentary "I Want Your Money."
Randy DeSoto is the senior staff writer for The Western Journal. He wrote and was the assistant producer of the documentary film "I Want Your Money" about the perils of Big Government, comparing the presidencies of Ronald Reagan and Barack Obama. Randy is the author of the book "We Hold These Truths," which addresses how leaders have appealed to beliefs found in the Declaration of Independence at defining moments in our nation's history. He has been published in several political sites and newspapers.

Randy graduated from the United States Military Academy at West Point with a BS in political science and Regent University School of Law with a juris doctorate.
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania
Graduated dean's list from West Point
United States Military Academy at West Point, Regent University School of Law
Books Written
We Hold These Truths
Professional Memberships
Virginia and Pennsylvania state bars
Phoenix, Arizona
Languages Spoken
Topics of Expertise
Politics, Entertainment, Faith