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Man building sovereign nation on remote piece of land in Utah

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(NaturalNews) When the sovereign nation of Zaqistan was founded a decade ago, there were no speeches or fanfare, and its creation was not the result of a revolution or political upheaval. In fact, the occasion went almost completely unnoticed.

There has been some media coverage since then and there has been a recent uptick, but there are no permanent residents in Zaqistan – as of yet, anyway – and very few people even know exactly where it is located.

What is known is that Zaqistan is situated in a remote area of the desert in Utah far from any roads, and that its founder and president, Zaq Landsberg, is reluctant to give directions to anyone interested in visiting simply because he fears they might become hopelessly lost trying to find it.

Zachary "Zaq" Landsberg is a New York sculptor who purchased four acres of desert in Box Elder County, Utah, for $610 on eBay back in 2005. His "conceptual goal" is to turn the desolate strip of land into a real nation, even though he realizes that will probably never happen.

The truth is that Zaqistan is more of an art project than a real attempt to found a nation.

Landsberg explains:

The conceptual goal is I want it to become a real country. I mean, that goal is not going to happen. It's impossible, but going through the motions, (I'm) trying to make that happen.

"Something From Nothing"

Although there are no Zaqistan residents to speak of other than perhaps a few snakes, lizards and jackrabbits, there are a few of the trappings associated with a "real" nation.

For example, there's a flag, a border crossing with a gate, robot sentry sculptures guarding the borders, and even a Victory Arch.

There are also official-looking passports and a motto: "Quispiam Ex Nusquam (Something From Nothing)."

Landsberg is interested in exploring the limits regarding sovereignty and what land ownership really means. "My goal is to, like, probe those little areas," he said.

Although Landsberg pays property taxes to the county, he prefers to call them "tributes." His idea is to make Zaqistan resemble a real nation as much as possible, even though its existence is not recognized by any other sovereign nation to date.

It might seem a little surprising that federal, state or local authorities haven't taken much notice. After all, founding a new nation within the borders of the United States is generally frowned upon. However, since it is a rather insignificant piece of land and a "nation" that poses little threat to anyone, it appears that no one has bothered to become very upset about the whole project.

Landsberg appears to have no real intention of challenging U.S. sovereignty in any serious way, so the powers that be have chosen to leave Landsberg and Zaqistan alone, at least for now.

Establishing sovereignty can be tricky

Other attempts at establishing sovereignty have not turned out so well. One recent example was the April 2015 founding of "Liberland", an attempt by Czech libertarian activist Vit Jedlicka to turn a disputed area of land on the Danube between Croatia and Serbia into a sovereign micronation.

Croatia, which currently administers the disputed land, has rejected the idea that it will ever be awarded to a third party rather than to either Serbia or Croatia. The Croatian authorities have blocked entry to the area and detained Jedlicka on two separate occasions.

In general, the establishment of new sovereign nations can be a tricky business, unless you have a massive army to back up your efforts.

Meanwhile, it is hoped that the authorities will continue to let Zaqistan exist. As far as I'm concerned, the world could use even more micronations, especially ones that don't take themselves too seriously...

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