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LAW, FORCE AND DIPLOMACY AT SEA

Law, Force and Diplomacy at Sea

Author(s)                 Ken Booth
Publisher Routledge
Date 2014
Pages 231
Format pdf
Size 4.3 Mb

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   I once heard a story about a poor woman from the industrial north of England who was taken to the seaside. She had never seen the ocean before. Thrilled, she walked across the sand and stood in the water. For the first time in her life, she said with wonder, she had finally seen something of which there was enough for everybody. Two generations later, this story seems like ancient history. Today, the oceans are used and abused, and claimed and occupied at an unprecedented rate. Even the seven seas cannot now match human need, and greed. Were the poor northern woman to retrace her steps across the same beach today, she would probably look out, with her feet smeared with tar and with an oil rig spoiling her view, and immediately realize that there is no longer enough ocean for everybody - unless wisdom and sensible management are allowed to prevail. In the rapidly changing maritime environment of the last decade, management and control have been the logical responses to the heavy pressures on the use of the sea. These pressures and responses inevitably have long- and short-term implications for those accustomed to use the seas in traditional ways. Navies, obviously, cannot be unaffected. And it is this confrontation between the desire of most states for greater national control over adjacent parts of the ocean and a 'fairer' distribution of the maritime resources beyond, and the continuing desire of the traditional naval powers to be free to use the sea to the maximum of their naval and economic ability, which has produced the tension that provides the setting for this book. Clearly, there are serious implications for naval strategy in the growing trend towards national and international jurisdiction over larger parts of the troubled maritime common...

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