Tuesday, August 07, 2007
Russian flag at North Pole—so?
Using a robotic arm, a Russian submarine planted a flag in the seabed at the North Pole last week. Under ordinary international law, because the North Pole is under the open sea, Russia would have no more claim over that area than the US would have on the Pacific Ocean between the Aleutian Islands and Hawaii. And in 1969, the US planted a flag on the moon. Did people flip out then? It didn't mean the US has a territorial claim to the moon or any part of it.
But this is different. There is a UN convention on the exploitation of buried resources in the Arctic by the nations from which the continental shelf extends into the Arctic Ocean. Canada's upset because Russia's way ahead of them. It's there own fault, though, if they haven't gotten the technology together that they need to press their own claims.
Meanwhile, I wonder if Russian MTV is sporting a new signature photo.