When I first heard of the LOST (Law Of the Sea Treaty), it sounded like a bad plot for a science-fiction movie.

In the ’60s and ’70s, when the United Nations organized and led a series of conferences on the Law of the Sea, most considered the idea too weird to be taken seriously.

However, this maritime nightmare is about to become a reality.

The LOST was hatched by a group of internationalists who want to give the United Nations control of seven-tenths of the earth’s surface area. It creates an International Seabed Authority to regulate the vast oceans and everything that happens beneath these waters, as well as everything that travels above or below their surfaces.

In addition, it would – for the very first time – create a revenue stream for the United Nations and give this onerous international bureaucracy true independence from its member nations.

Under the LOST, the United Nations would have the power to tax any and every type of sea-going vessel, as well as any type of ocean research and exploration. In fact, it would give the United Nations absolute control of these activities.

How would the United Nations exercise this control? It could persuade member nations to provide “seakeepers” to do its bidding. However, if that should fail, with its own revenue stream, the United Nations would be free to recruit and maintain its own standing army of paid international enforcers. Many believe that if you can control the great seas and oceans of the world, you control the world!

President Ronald Reagan was not about to give away the ability we now have to conduct activities in international waters. When Reagan refused to support the LOST, it slipped quietly beneath the waves until 1994, when President Bill Clinton dredged it up and signed it.

However, when the LOST went over to the Senate for ratification, Foreign Relations Chairman Jesse Helms told Clinton to get lost. Clinton was followed by George W. Bush, a president cut from the mold of Ronald Reagan, who was willing to work with the United Nations, but unwilling to be controlled by it. The LOST was gone forever, or so it seemed.

It has recently come to light that some members of the Bush administration have been working behind the scenes with a group of international businessmen who want to resurrect this many-tentacled ocean monster. It likely has something to do with the black gold hidden under the sea.

It now appears that its ratification is being pushed by Vice President Dick Cheney, the man who ran Halliburton before being pressed back into public service by President Bush.

Mr. Cheney, say it isn’t so!

Many of Cheney’s buddies in the oil industry see the LOST as a way to recoup the millions they have been denied by our capitulation to the radical environmentalists, who keep us from drilling in our territorial waters. Understandably, they would like to see some protection for the millions they would like to sink into undersea oil exploration in international waters. They mistakenly see the United Nations as that protection.

Since when has the United Nations – largely is controlled by a pack of socialists or outright dictators and thugs – protected our interests?

Even more troubling, the U.S. Navy is quietly pushing for LOST ratification. The Center for Security Policy correctly states that the treaty effectively prohibits two functions vital to American security: intelligence collection in – and submerged transit of – territorial waters.

Why would the Navy sink under pressure for the LOST?

In the 1990s, following the Tailhook incident, the Navy allowed itself to be bullied by a bunch of finger-wagging, radical feminists. Should we be surprised that the Navy now has allowed itself to be torpedoed by a bunch of over-the-hill guys in business suits?

Unfortunately, the threat from the LOST is real and immediate!

Dick Lugar, the new chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, dutifully carried the water for the administration on the LOST, only allowing proponents to testify at a brief hearing. He is hoping to bring it to the floor for a surprise vote before any opposition can be organized.

Judicial Watch and the Sierra Club sued Mr. Cheney to get the records of what went on behind the closed doors of his Energy Task Force. It must be pretty embarrassing, because Mr. Cheney refused to comply with two lower-court rulings and appealed all the way to the Supreme Court in order to keep those records away from the American people.

Perhaps, just perhaps, it was this battle plan for the LOST.

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