Frozen Beaver, What’s Next Lunar War?

In 2005, the Canadian military launched Exercise Frozen Beaver to claim Hans Island, a hunk of rock off the coast of Greenland that’s long been claimed by both Denmark and Canada.  

The Wired article below talks about how competition over the now thawed arctic and it’s once unreachable oil deposits.  Perhaps more interestingly, this could foreshadow sovereignty claims on the moon.

http://www.wired.com/science/space/magazine/15-12/st_essay

It could get crowded up there, and the rules for lunar landgrabs will likely be patterned on what is happening now in the far north. “The recent Arctic events are relevant,” says Joanne Gabrynowicz, an international space law expert at the University of Mississippi. “The seabed, high seas, Antarctica, and space are, as a matter of law, global commons. What happens in one can be argued to be legal precedent in the others.”

…In human history, anywhere there’s value, there are eventually property rights.

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1 Response to “Frozen Beaver, What’s Next Lunar War?”


  1. 1 Dave K. November 29, 2007 at 3:50 pm

    Random thought…

    For those that have watched the Lessig video from the TED conference Matt posted under Free Culture, imagine if the property rights claims prior to the advent of the airplane were still in place as we land grab on the moon. Invisible ‘Cones of Ownership’ would stretch up through the atmosphere out into space. There would be a resulting ‘Lunar Belt’ on earth consisting of plots over which the moon’s orbit would pass. Would the plot’s owners then be entitled to some percentage of revenues generated on the moon?


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