UK government tries neocolonial grab at Antarctic, while they let Scott’s hut rot


This is a video of Robert Wyatt, singing Shipbuilding, against the Falklands war, on the Old Grey Whistle Test, on BBC TV.

From 70South Antarctic News:

According to the Guardian, the United Kingdom is planning to claim sovereign rights over a vast area (more than 1m sq km (386,000 sq miles)) of the remote seabed off Antarctica.

This claim defies the spirit of the 1959 Antarctic treaty which states that no new claims shall be asserted on the continent. Is the UK claim likely to spark a race for territory in Antarctica?

The UK sees it as an effort to secure resources for the future.

The Foreign Office confirmed the news. “There are five claims in total that the UK is hoping to put forward,” a statement said. “They are in the Bay of Biscay, around Ascension, off the British Antarctic Territory, around the Falkland Islands and South Georgia and in the Hatton/Rockall basin.”

Oh really. Has the Thatcherite rot infected New Labour that much? Does the Brown government really want a 21st century replay of the medieval and 16th-19th century Spanish and French wars, with the two countries much closer to the Bay of Biscay? And how will Basque nationalists like all this?

And how about Africans, living so much closer to Ascension island?

Was one bloody Falkland war not enough?

And how about Ireland, Denmark, etc. and Rockall?

Here is a video of the Irish Wolfe Tones – Rock On Rockall. Lyrics are here.

Recorded 2/27/2007 at the Buffalo Irish Arts Society.

Oil billions at stake as UN examines British claims to Rockall: here.

Why does not the British government take better care of birdlife in its present colonies (see also here)?

Talking about islands and colonialism: why does the British government continue with its injustice against the Chagos islanders?

Meanwhile, in the Antarctic, the British government lets the hut of explorer Robert Falcon Scott rot away.

The article in the Guardian explains:

The Foreign Office, however, has told the Guardian that data is being gathered and processed for a submission to the UN which could extend British oil, gas and mineral exploitation rights up to 350 miles offshore into the Southern Ocean.

Yeah right. If the global warming (see also here), so encouraged by Tony Blair’s boss George W. Bush, continues and the Antarctic ice melts, they hope for money grabs by BP and Shell, and to hell with the Antarctic environment.

However, the Guardian article continues:

Karen Sack, head of oceans for Greenpeace International, said little was known about the environmental impact on marine life of drilling and exploration at great depths. “What we don’t know is what kind of impact these [prospecting] activities are having right now. We have more maps of the moon than we do of the deep sea. Whenever there’s deep-sea fishing there’s always new species identified. We would hope [states] would leave the [Antarctic] wilderness as it is.”

Large Iceberg Breaks Off Pine Island, Antarctica: here.

Conflicting claims in the Arctic: here.

CHILEAN and Argentinian MPs gathered in the Antarctic on Thursday to stake territorial rights after Britain laid claim to a wide swathe of ocean bottom off the frozen continent: here.

10 thoughts on “UK government tries neocolonial grab at Antarctic, while they let Scott’s hut rot

  1. Irish Government to help preserve base
    by Kris Molle — last modified 2007-11-06 14:50

    The Irish Government, led by President Mary McAleese has announced they will help fund efforts to preserve an Antarctic base used by famous Irish explorers Ernest Shackleton and Tom Crean.

    The Government has made a 53,000 Euro donation towards the New Zealand Antarctic Heritage Trust which will help maintain the base .

    President McAleese said “Their endless curiosity, and bravery, their love of life and love of this earth, have left us an enduring challenge to know our world profoundly, to respect it utterly and to take responsibility in our time for the times yet to come.”

    Source:

    The Press Association

    http://www.70south.com/latest-antarctic-news/irish-government-to-help-preserve-base

    Like

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