WILDY, SIMMONDS & HILL PUBLISHING, London, 2018
Canals are fascinating, whether domestic or international. Gouged into the firmament at great expense of capital and human labour, international canals transform the transit route of the oceans, linking that which nature did not.
The Suez, Panama, and Kiel canals are likewise exercises in human imagination that confounded the sceptics of the day about what might be accomplished and what was deemed to be impossible.
Although each international canal is unique in so many ways, common principles at a certain level of generality have emerged in fashioning their respective legal regimes. The challenge is whether the major three international canals will be joined by a fourth.
The Black Sea and the Mediterranean Sea are actually joined by nature in the personage of the Turkish Straits, recognized for centuries to be a key “chokepoint” in the arteries of maritime commerce. So heavy has maritime traffic become in the Straits than an alternative, or parallel, artificial route has been considered desirable since at least the sixteenth century. Half a millennium later plans are advanced to undertake and complete the construction of what is today known as the “Istanbul Canal”.