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The Arctic is the area around the earth's North Pole. The Arctic includes parts of Russia, Alaska, Canada, Greenland, Lapland and Svalbard as well as the Arctic Ocean. The 10°C (50°F) July isotherm is commonly used to define the border of the Arctic region.

The Arctic is also known as the Land of the Midnight Sun as it is within the Arctic Circle.

The name Arctic comes from the ancient Greek αρκτος, meaning 'bear', and is a reference to the constellations of the Great Bear and Little Bear, which are located near the North Star (which is actually part of the Little Bear).

During the Cold War, the Arctic region was extensively monitored by the United States military, since the first warnings of a Soviet Union nuclear strike would have been indicated by ICBMs launched over the North Pole towards the United States of America.

For military service within the Arctic Circle, the United States Navy issues a service decoration known as the Arctic Service Ribbon.


See also