The self-proclaimed Prince of Sealand, Paddy Roy Bates, is putting his fiefdom-the world’s smallest country-up for sale.
I sure was excited when I read this and immediately began wondering what type of ruler I would be of my own country; benevolent leader, kindly lord, iron-fisted dictator?
But then I found out that the world’s smallest country has no citizens. In fact, it doesn’t even have any land.
Sealand consists of two World War II era concrete towers built seven miles off the coast of England. Originally designed as an anti-aircraft base, its presence in international waters allowed for Bates to take over and nationalize the structures 40 years ago. The enigmatic new ruler issued currency, stamps, designed a flag, and even wrote a national anthem.
Bates then fought off a challenge by the British Courts, as well as an invasion by a multinational force complete with prisoners of war and diplomatic intervention.
Now Sealand and its storied history can be yours. Sort of. Since one cannot technically “sell” a country, interested parties can purchase a “transfer of tenancy.”
Starting price is a staggering £65 million. That’s a lot of money for a very little country.