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Thursday, 18 October 2007

Laying Claim, Laying Waste

Excuse me for being naive, but I thought Antarctica was the last best hope for "mankind" (the moon being already targeted for military expansion in future): a place no one could own, no nation could exploit. I stand corrected. It's been reported that the UK is laying claim to vast tracts of Antarctica and surrounds, in order to secure oil and mineral rights - resources that in the 21st century will become increasingly required to sustain industrial expansion. So many things are wrong with this action, I won't even begin to argue a coherent case against the land grab. But I will say this - when will coherent, calm and capable people begin to argue the case against national interest? Almost every evil on the world stage, and every good that is halted or hindered, is related to an act made in some nation's "national interest". And yet, we are all victims of bleeding across porous borders. I am concerned that the late century ahead will feature increasingly bizarre alliances and struggles over far-flung bits of land and undersea beds to establish dominance over other economies. Oh, so like the last few centuries, then. How this ties in to Labour's ethical and green agendas, heaven only knows.
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