In bygone days, one breed of camp followers trafficked in death. These civilians scoured blood soaked battlefields after a fight and scavenged what they could from the dead - boots, coats, belts - whatever they thought they could sell.
Photo from AP news file
Today, our polar ice cap is dying. Modern day camp followers, nations seeking oil, fish, diamonds, and time saving shipping routes, stalk the Arctic to claim land becoming uncovered as the melt proceeds.
The entire ecosystem from polar bears to the native Inuit people will suffer as the global warning spreads. But business interests, I don’t think so. According to a recent AP story, the US Geological Survey estimates the Arctic has up to 25% of the world’s undiscovered oil and gas reserves.
Russia, Canada, Denmark, Norway, and the United States seek to profit, ironically in the hunt to produce more of the substances that are killing the planet.
Twenty years ago, Norway’s Hand Island was a little-known speck of rock in the middle of nowhere.
Today, Canada and Denmark circle it with warships. Who will win control of the island isn’t important in the long run. What difference will it make in a hundred years when we’re all sprouting water wings?