Micro Nations of the World

Image of a map that displays the micro nations of the world.

Who has heard of a micro nation? Have you ever visited the country of Molossia? We assume your answers are no, and no. A micro nation is defined as a small, self-declared nation that exists within larger nations. They print their own stamps, fly their own flags, have their own currency and apply their own taxes – on a much smaller scale. The micro nation of Molossia is located on 1.3 acres of real estate 35 miles southeast of Reno, Nevada and has a population of 27. Of those 27 residents, 6 of them live inside the country and the other 21 live outside the country. By now most of you are probably asking, “How can this be real?” According to Kevin Baugh, resident of Molossia and founder of the MicroCon conference, Molossia is a real place, although some micro nations do not have a physical location and only exist online.

Image of a micro nation's president.

Speaking of MicroCon, it is known as a gathering of micro nation leaders from around the world. The conference was held on April 11th at the Anaheim Central Library, which is near Disneyland in California. A few of the micro nations that were present at the conference included, Molossia, Vikesland, Broslavia and Westartica. Of the four micro nations listed, Westartica might be the most interesting. Westartica is 620,000 square miles of land in Antarctica that no country has ever claimed – it is about the size of Alaska. Westartica has a population of 300, although none of its residents actually live there.

While micro nations do exist throughout the world, they face numerous obstacles from the actual countries that they reside in. A micro nation is not allowed to change established laws of their host nation. For example, Molossia is not allowed to lower the drinking age or refuse to abide by American laws. This makes a micro nation more of a club/organization/association than an actual nation. Regardless of the obstacles that micro nations face, Kevin Baugh encourages skeptics to use their imagination and to be a part of something different.

Credits: NPR, Daily Chronicle

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