Tuesday, July 28, 2015

Solomon Islands

A British protectorate from the 1890s, the islands became independent in 1978 and then spent years tearing themselves apart over ethnic stupidities – the old story of “I’m tall, you’re short, that makes me better than you”. Australian peacekeepers stepped in to keep the handbags and the heads apart, though they couldn’t stop the continued spitting. People will always find somebody to hate if you give them the opportunity. The detail isn’t worth the writing down; you can look it up for yourself if you are so minded. Big-Endians and Little-Endians once more (here they are called Isatabus and Malaita Eagles).

There are something like a thousand islands that make up the archipelago, a mixture of unscaleable mountains and unwalkable coral atolls, which, combined with earthquakes and tsunamis (the last was in 2007) mean that the islands don't need human stupidity for life to become unliveable, though the humans are making a pretty good effort to keep up with the gods. An annual estimated GDP of $1.046 billion places the islands two hundred and third in the economic list of world nations, which is quite an achievement in a world that generally claims to have only two hundred and four countries (at least, that was the number that competed in the 2002 Olympic Games).

Marks for: 202

Marks against: 1.046 billion


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