[Ed. – Denmark doesn’t want China to build the air strip. It would be near the U.S. Air Force’s Thule Air Base, so obviously we’re not enamored of the idea. That said, the way to handle this is the way Trump was born to: ratchet it up until China hollers “Uncle!” and wonders why they ever had such a stupid idea. The folks in Greenland are well aware that being under the de facto protection of the United States is a highly beneficial situation they want to keep, and letting China in is a big gamble. They just need to see the price they’ll pay in the loss of their peaceful status quo, if the U.S. has to start bustling around with a bigger, more prickly and aggressive footprint in order to keep China in check in Greenland, of all places.]
With less than 60,000 people spread across more than 830,000 square miles, Greenland relies heavily on air transport to move supplies and people up and down its coast.
So when the local government issued a solicitation to build three new airports, the move made sense from a business perspective. The project would be expensive, but would improve commerce and make life on the island easier for its residents.
Then a Chinese company — owned by the government in Beijing, and once blacklisted by the World Bank — put forth a bid, and a simple request for proposals transformed into a project with international diplomatic ramifications.