200 years ago began the race for Antarctica

a crucial year of the 200th anniversary of great geographical discoveries made by Russian sailors. How many know where the island Volkonsky, Yermolov, Kutuzov, Barclay de Tolly, Rajewski, Miloradovich, and together — the island of the Russians?

In fact, these Islands are in the middle of the Pacific ocean. That’s the kind of dal snuck the expedition of Bellingshausen and Lazarev on the only wooden sloops without GLONASS or GPS. But today, for example, even the Russified Google maps Russian names there. Conspiracy? No. At least, not necessarily. Just at some point, and many in Russia were somehow surprisingly lightly to this heritage.

more important for us, a group of like-minded people from Russia and South America, was to open the monument to Bellingshausen on the mainland, which is visible on any map of the world, in Antarctica, at the Russian polar station “Bellingshausen”. This project we made 5 years. Thanks to the sculptor Alexei Leonov. Thank you to the patrons. Thanks to the Russian polar explorers who conducted a unique operation: hammered under a monument of piles in volcanic soil, has brought they found many kilometres from station a stone pedestal. Thank you who came to the opening of the picture — Chinese, Koreans, Germans, Uruguayans, Chileans. And they, today, continue to wonder: how is it Bellingshausen undertook such a voyage then?! The word and explorers, and diplomats.

– Me that never ceases to amaze? 200 years ago. Fragile wooden boats. And came! How is that even possible?!

– Me too, it’s still amazing. Apparently, people were such that were of metal, and sailed on wooden boats. Now people a little less. Previously, they sought to discover new lands and for this he spared neither themselves nor their lives, said Victor Veledin, head of the Russian polar station “Bellingshausen”.

– It is impossible to imagine. Sometimes it is not clear what difficulties were in it time, — said Hans-Ulrich Peter, an ornithologist of the University Friedrich-Schiller, Jena (Germany).

January 28, the opening of the Bellingshausen and Lazarev — 200 years. And attempts to reduce this discovery — and they are — this is serious. It is a reflection of this race, which is the opening of Antarctica Russian only spurred. A detective around the race is updated so far. But what is there to look but snow and ice?

There is a saying that a country can be considered a great power if it has three programs: space, nuclear and Antarctic. 200 years ago began the race for Antarctica. Bellingshausen saw it in your log about Antarctica writes the British Navigator Edward Bransfield. A year later the first land of Antarctica landed an Englishman, by the time of the American, Connecticut. If you think about it, the next time that such a race is already in the twentieth century around the space program.

in Antarctica this year little snow. Particularly well visible contrast in neighboring Russian Uruguayan station “Artigas”. If and further will go, where accessible will be clearly available here oil, gas, diamonds. But where is the reason and what are the consequences?

– the scientific world of the Antarctic stirs the thought of the mosquitoes. Catch all the mosquitoes active. It’s because of global warming?

– Not only because of warming. Due to the fact that listed. Began on the English stations. Found mosquitoes where they should not be. And here the same thing happened, apparently, brought, — told one of the employees of the station.

Tell you about what we get to Antarctica. The South of South America, the coast of the Magellan Strait. On Tierra del Fuego and Cape horn. And here — the Chilean city of Punta arenas, considered the capital of the region Magellanica and Antarctica, but who also recently swept the riots.

It is not modern art — it’s stones smashed shop Windowss in Chile. Here they are the investigation of the recent riots. However, this is an internal matter of the Chileans, but the clash between the different States in this part of the world was also. And how.

“Antarctica at the beginning, after opening it, of course, was a tasty morsel, everyone wanted to stake out there own some territory. And even led to serious exacerbations of the interstate,” — said the Russian foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov.

he Fired.

– Yes.

the opening of the Bellingshausen whole continent gave rise to much race.

At the cemetery in Punta arenas, we show the mass grave of German sailors, who on the way to the Antarctic have fallen in battle with the British in the First world war. Here is the grave of the one who under the guise of world war II was placed on those Antarctic lands, which are also claimed by the same Britain, but also Argentina, Chile posts.

That arrival in these waters of the Bellingshausen included the task of showing the flag. For the first time on the map of hostilities these places appear at the end of the XVI century. English pirate Francis Drake, after whom is named the Strait intrudes here and ruins of the Spanish settlement. The Queen of England gives him the title of Admiral, and sir. On the way to Antarctica for the first time appear strengthen.

Interesting. When in Punta arenas to Board the plane to Antarctica, no Chilean exit stamps, we are not put in the passport. For Chileans discovered by Bellingshausen Antarctica — just a continuation of their territory.

If we beat geopolitical chess, the pilots informed us that we pass Cape horn. However, no matter how you look out the window, nothing to see — mostly cloudy. When the Navigator rounded Cape horn, it became clear that Tierra del Fuego is not the beginning of the southern continent.

the Disputed Islands the Falklands-Malvinas, which was an Anglo-Argentine war, and even South Georgia. It is from these areas of the country extend the meridians and “cut” Antarcticu into slices.

“Yes, indeed a number of countries in the last century — Britain, Norway, Chile, Australia, New Zealand — stated its claim to part of the mainland and the surrounding waters of the southern ocean, called sectors, triangles,” — said Sergey Lavrov.

let’s Not forget that 200 years ago the first saw Antarctica, discovered mankind Russian Explorer Fabian Gottlieb von Bellingshausen in General, the Russian expedition of Bellingshausen and Lazarev.

the Drake passage is over, and our plane is landing on the Antarctic island of king George, which, unfortunately, even in Russia infrequently recall that Bellingshausen named it Waterloo. But fortunately, scientists can study here not politics, but science.

In Antarctica, a huge bowl of the GLONASS system. Other interesting twists and turns. In response to the construction of the Russian Orthodox Church his chapel closer to the pole opened the Ukrainians and Bulgarians. But the Chileans and Argentines on the continent, the open Bellingshausen, keep not only chapels, but also banks and even school. Why?

In the South of Chile — the worship of everything connected with the culture of the local Indians. More precisely, the cult of memory of these amazing tribes, gave rise to the whole direction, as we would say today, in design. Because when it came to the colonization of the land, these Indians were taken to Europe by the reformation, and when they realized that they want to return to a familiar way of life, not to let them die. And colonization was already extended and on: from the shores of the Strait of Magellan, the views of Antarctica.

According to the Chilean version, if not the whole of Antarctica, the Antarctic Peninsula is a continuation of the Chilean Andes. The Argentines claim the same Peninsula, but had something to say. And in 1978 away from the shores of the Straits of Magellan to Antarctica among other was sent to a married couple: he was the Argentine military, she is a young woman nand 7th month of pregnancy. And soon in Antarctica appeared Emilio Marcus, the first citizen of Argentina born on the white continent. Since these cases are more and more.

by the Way, their citizenship to the boy immediately offered the British. REGO’s parents refused, but in London was very worried. The fact that, according to London, the first person born in Antarctica was a girl, born on South Georgia in the early twentieth century.

To the 80-th years of the same steel to meet the Chileans. And, of course, poor lady and poor children, but this is an argument. The Chileans, the Argentines say: look, it’s not just our land — where our citizens are born.

fortunately, for the past 60 years as all territorial claims in Antarctica frozen by the Antarctic Treaty. But Moscow and Washington at the signing of the contract made a reservation that as the discoverers can claim at all on the entire continent.

“that is the mainland, was established by the Bellingshausen and Lazarev for the first time, after them there was carried out expeditions of the British, the Americans, but we were pioneers and were the first to prove that the mainland, and not the accumulation of ice,” — said Sergey Lavrov.

the Russian foreign Minister does not accidentally said what I said. Because there are who is now trying to put the opening of the Bellingshausen questioned, saying that it was he who suggested all Americans.

well, in preparation for a trip to Antarctica, we held an international workshop in the framework of the forum “Russia — Latin America” in St.-Petersburg state University. And we looked into the vault of the Central naval Museum of Russia.

the Expedition was in fact the Bellingshausen and Lazarev, and here in the vaults of the Central naval Museum spyglass Lazarev. However, this is from a later period. But on a nearby rack — the spyglass, which was definitely Bellingshausen during the voyage. And, anddey, just through it he saw Antarctica. Another issue is that later in the logbook Bellingshausen write that he saw “mother ice.” This causes skeptics to doubt, as he saw the ice or is it a continent? Enough to see a dictionary of the then period in order to find out, then, “mater” meaning “the mainland”.

“the Soviet Union and the United States at the time, together made a statement about categorical rejection of any claims”, — said Sergey Lavrov.

– it Turns out that the position of Russia and America to Antarctica is one of those examples where complete unanimity between Moscow and Washington?

– Yes. But in the end everything peacefully, and, I think, as you suggested, this experience should be used in modern conflicts.

Antarctica today is really a zone of peace and international cooperation.

I’m not here for the first time. And every time I really like the atmosphere of the Arctic brotherhood. Even Pinochet was here. With the Soviet Union had no relationships. And Soviet polar explorers he came. You really are all equal?

“Yes,” said the ornithologist from Germany.

on one side you have Uruguayans, Chileans, and who else on the perimeter here?

– Beyond the hill — Chinese, located opposite the Koreans, a little further – the Argentines. For a glacier — station “Arctowski”. Polish. Across the Strait is a Brazilian station “Feras”, — said one of the employees of the station.

– You call the state, some of which Russia is not always smooth, but is everything okay?

– Here — Yes, because here is another situation.

– That is, the continent — exception?

– Yes.

– the Rest of the planet can live the way you live in Antarctica?

– It would be good.

– If the whole world lived in Antarctica, we would be living on another planet?

– of Course. SweatWMD in Antarctica nature is the main enemy, without the help of neighbors to cope with the difficulties that arise. So all understand it and live very amicably and a family.

fortunately, behind and 90-ies, when Russia its presence in Antarctica has sharply reduced. But even with frozen territorial claims this station and “bid posts”. A well-established path on the far South — always a great policy. Since the time of Bellingshausen.

“the Diplomats have largely helped the organization of this expedition. Around the route of our ambassadors, General consuls was puzzled by the orders to provide assistance, including the supply of provisions, in equipping binoculars, telescopes. And, of course, the fact that this expedition took place without any incidents, no one died, no one got sick from scurvy, this largely reflected the emphasis that the government, including the diplomatic service, in the way provided for these people”, — said Sergey Lavrov.

But the sailors did not remain in debt. On the way from Antarctica to Moscow crossed the Andes and appear where in the New world established the first monument to polar Explorer Thaddeus Bellingshausen.

Palm trees and Bellingshausen? Yes. All right. South America, that’s where replenishing stocks, Bellingshausen starting their journey to Antarctica. And here is returned from the far South. This put a monument in Montevideo, but Uruguay then entered Brazil. But Brazil rules so king Joao VI, actually Portuguese, but he fled to South America from Europe after the Napoleonic invasion. And just when there appears Bellingshausen, king decides to return to Europe. And then the Russian sailors were required to be and diplomats.

They come from South America two weeks earlier than the king, to the ocean the news of the return learned it from the Russians. And it was by the expedition of Bellingshausen and Lazarev in Europe, returns from Brazil to the Russian Embassy.

Purely Russian history in Antarctica is, of course, the station “Vostok”, where many kilometers of depth take out cores of ice formed hundreds of thousands years ago. Look how the planet is heated even when there was no industry. And it was heated! And this science, and a large economy: what then will the crops… Not so much in Antarctica. Although there are now things are changing.

– I’m not a scientist, but pointed out that lichens have become much more and moss.

Is it because of global warming — said the employee of the Russian station.

Green Antarctica. Who would say! Since five years ago, there was snow.

– When the snow lies, it is not visible underneath. But lichens have been activated.

But you can’t beat nature: the mountains, the glaciers grow. So the warming is not so simple. Well done Bellingshausen and Lazarev I found this continent-the lab.

If Antarctica was not, it would have to come up with. Thank you Bellingshausen and Lazarev, that 200 years ago they discovered this continent. Indeed, in the interests of all mankind. The place where peaceful good-neighbourliness, cooperation and development in the science, what we often even do not guess and do not dream. This is the place where you can dream.