Bogus Obama-Bashing: Map Used in Claim that Obama is Giving Away Oil Rich Islands to Russia
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I just saw a reference to an article, Obama State Department set to cede oil-rich Alaska islands to Russia on a recent Facebook page. The first thing that made me think that this may not be true is the map.
Click here for larger image.
The article says, in part, "Obama’s State Department is giving away seven strategic, resource-laden Alaskan islands to the Russians. Yes, to the Putin regime in the Kremlin. … The seven endangered islands in the Arctic Ocean and Bering Sea include one the size of Rhode Island and Delaware combined. The Russians are also to get the tens of thousands of square miles of oil-rich seabeds surrounding the islands. The Department of Interior estimates billions of barrels of oil are at stake." They say it was done in secrecy! You can read the entire article here.
So, I did a bit of checking. Turns out that this is just more outright Obama-bashing - totally bogus. The truth is that the islands in question have never been in U.S. territory. They were not purchased with Alaska and are not ours to giveaway, cede or sell.
Congresswoman Foxx says in, Fact or Fiction: Does the United States have plans to cede Alaskan islands to Russia?, "No. A popular email forward claims that the United States owns several islands and rock formations (Wrangel Island, Herald Island, Bennett Island, Jeannette Island, Henrietta Island, Copper Island, Sea Lion Rock and Sea Otter Rock) in the Arctic Ocean and Bering Sea and plans to cede them to Russia. This is an urban legend. The U.S.-USSR Maritime Boundary Agreement, signed by the United States and the Soviet Union on June 1, 1990, defines our maritime boundary in the Arctic Ocean, Bering Sea, and northern Pacific Ocean and each of the islands and rock formations listed above fall on the Russian side of the boundary. Furthermore, none of the islands or rocks were included in the U.S. purchase of Alaska from Russia in 1867, and they have never been claimed by the United States... more.
The U.S.-USSR Maritime Boundary Agreement, signed during the George H.W. Bush administration, makes it clear that these islands, that Obama is supposedly ceding, are in Russian territory and not U.S. territory - they are not ours to cede!
True as that may be, hype often outshines fact and maps seem to help the hype even though, at close inspection, they do exactly the opposite.
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