Cold Politics
November 29, 2002 2:00 AM   Subscribe

Cold weather politics? The antarctic treaty was written in 1959 and adopted in 1961 and has been signed by 27 countries. It has helped to keep the antarctic region a real no-mans land where science instead of politics is the target. And of course it looks quite nice as well.
posted by sebas (9 comments total)
Inspired by blue_beetle's comment
posted by sebas at 2:01 AM on November 29, 2002

The pictures in that last link were simultaneously fascinating and stunning .... very cool post
posted by ElvisJesus at 5:58 AM on November 29, 2002

Antarctica isn't all science and sunshine...
posted by Fabulon7 at 6:29 AM on November 29, 2002

Antarctica isn't all science and sunshine

New slogan for the Antarctica Tourist Council
posted by ElvisJesus at 6:47 AM on November 29, 2002

What's kept politics largely out of the Antarctic is a lack of readily expoitable natural resources. (Except maybe for fresh water in the form of ice -- let some regional fresh-water shortages become global ones and see how long before the squabbling starts.)
posted by alumshubby at 7:17 AM on November 29, 2002

Dammit, sebas, I thought you meant the treaty looks nice! I clicked on the link expecting to see it lovingly hand-lettered by a professional calligrapher on vellum, and instead I got a bunch of penguins. Sheesh. (All kidding aside, an excellent first post!)
posted by languagehat at 8:15 AM on November 29, 2002

Thanks language, reading the post again it indeed seems like the treaty looks great ;)
posted by sebas at 8:53 AM on November 29, 2002

Those were heady days back in the 40/50/60's. Grand sweeping human-race-advancing-days. We got the UN (it has issues, but it's a great idea), We got Antarctica (my kind of continent), We got Israel (again, more trouble, but a noble idea), We got Space Exploration and so very much more. In the 70/80/90's we got.... ummm, a Kyoto Treaty nobody wants to sign? Ummm... maybe the internet? Have all the noblest of human ideas been acted up? Is there nothing left?

Breathe deep, mine eyes, the frosty saga of eternal suns
From unseen depths and dreams undreamt,
I sing the gleaming cantor of unvanquished space
By thought I embrace the universal
With wings of mind I sail the infinitude
Glory! 'tis the stars which beckon man's spirit and set
our souls adrift! -- Anonymous

posted by blue_beetle at 12:40 PM on November 29, 2002

Well, it looks a nice place - but in a century or two, when mineral resources get scarce, I'm sure Antarctica will be no longer off-limits (just as Alaska is about to be now). As a major continent. it's bound to have oil, gas and mineral reserves (Scott, after all, found coal there) . As alumshubby said, only the sheer impracticality of exploiting this region keeps the politics out of it.
posted by raygirvan at 6:14 PM on November 30, 2002

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