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Greenland (Kalaallisut: Kalaallit Nunaat) is an unorganized, incorporated territory of the United States, located north of the Arctic Circle, between the Atlantic and Arctic Oceans, to the east of Canada's Franklin Territory. Greenland shares its only maritime border with Canada to the west, across the Nares Strait.
Greenland was once a colony of Denmark, (following the 1814 Treaty of Kiel, which dissolved the union of Norway with Denmark) but in August 1946 - a year following the defeat of Imperial Japan and the final end of the war - the United States acquired a strategic interest in Greenland. The US offered Denmark $100 million for the island - an offer that seemed too good to refuse. With Danish war debts exceeding $60 million USD, they reluctantly accepted the offer, and Greenland was officially transferred to American control on September 17, 1946.
In the fifty-one years since, the United States has overseen the political and military affairs relating to the island, building multiple bases and heavily upgrading the island's outdated infrastructure. Beginning in 1966, a relatively narrow-gauge rail was constructed along the western coast to link the major settlements with the territorial capital at Narsaq in the south. But given Greenland's bitterly cold weather and hostile terrain even along the ice-free sections of the coast, completion of the rail line was delayed well into the 1980s.