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August 09, 2004

Der er et yndigt land


Canada's viking problem is back in the news though hints from the Royal Danish Embassy to Washington suggest there is little cause for alarm.

When borders were drawn between Greenland and Canada in 1973, Hans Island was ignored and since then both Canadians and Danes have claimed the island by hoisting their nation’s flags there. Rumour also has it that visiting Danes leave bottles of schnapps behind for the next troupe of flag-bearing Canadians, who leave bottles of whiskey in return…

Not that this particular piece of Danish/Canadian territory is frightfully high profile. Even Google scratches its head when asked for a map of the place. While the Meatriarchy is sadenned that Canada has chosen conflict with a country with better beer than ours (isn't that anybody except Mexico?) the Geological Survey of Canada's Keith Dewing offers a thought. We could share Hans Island.

To resolve the dispute over who has claim to the island, Dewing suggests Canada and Denmark share Hans Island, which would then be half Nunavut, half Greenland - and a tourist attraction in its own right.

"They should put the border right in the middle. That would be the only place in North America where you could touch Canada and Europe," suggested Dewing.

Hans Island does not appear in on-line maps and if it were not for a lone satellite image I could not be certain quite where it is. I have a request. If the governments of Denmark and Canada are going to pretend to care about sovereignty over this uninhabited spot they could at least have the courtesy to send someone with a digital camera the next time they mount what can only be costly, time-wasting military expeditions to the place.

Cross-posted to The Shotgun

Posted by Ghost of a flea at August 9, 2004 08:24 AM

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