Asgardia MP Interview - Navid Basseri

Navid Bessari, an Asgardian Member of Parliament and the Deputy Chair of the Information and Communications committee, kindly agreed to answer some questions about himself, Asgardia and the future of humanity in space. 

When did you become Asgardian and why, what was your motivation?

For the first time, I read something in a technological weblog about Asgardia in October 2016. The idea of Asgardia was extraordinarily matching with my interests. I have always been interested in space exploration since my adolescence and always been fascinated by news about researches on space journeys. Traveling and living in space for many fans like me was only a dream that could be found in science fiction movies.

Also in recent years, my attention was drawn to the subject of future studies.  For most of the people that are working or researching new technologies, it is clear that the human world is on the verge of a major revolution that will affect the various dimensions of societies and expand their boundaries. I was sure that human societies are going to need major changes to adapt to this new world, and I was curious about how new societies would be defined and shaped.

To me, Asgardia was a conjunction of two interests. Participation in defining and building a futuristic society for expanding mankind out of the planet earth. On October 18th, 2016, I joined the Asgardia Space Nation, just a few minutes after reading an Article about this Nation.

What is your vision for Asgardia?

Currently, for many people, the idea of establishing and settling a society in outer space seems strange. This is not an unexpected subject. So far, space travels have been very limited and expensive and there are many technical obstacles for transportation to space. Therefore, it is natural if people prefer to think about small or big terrestrial problems instead of costly and difficult issues like settling in space.  This is a common way of thinking and if someone thinks otherwise, he/she looks odd to ordinary people.

But if we look at the slope of technological progress, the issue of settlement in space is not very strange. The competition for going to space has already begun and it is rapidly expanding.  Also, it is expected that challenges such as resource constraints and unsustainability will lead us to use resources on other planets in the solar system. Technologies like Artificial Intelligence can also help to deploy the human to space more safely.

So, I think that at a certain point in time, going to space would be, not only possible but inevitable for humans. But the way we are going to this is very important. Human civilization can occupy the space and solar system as the way was used in traditional and historical colonial exploitation. In this case, the space and the planets of the solar system will be only a place for the economic exploitation of a few countries or companies. There will be a great possibility of spreading unsustainability and pollution to the entire solar system. Another approach will be the spreading of human civilization to the solar system by using the best democratic experiences of humankind, which is precisely what we are looking for in Asgardia.

In fact, my vision and hope in Asgardia is that we can build a sustainable human society in space, based on advanced technologies, without taking our traditional and historical problems there.

What makes you volunteer your time and effort to the creation of this Nation?

I’ve elected for the parliament as the only representative of Persian speaking Asgardians. Unfortunately, nowadays, for the people of this part of the world, cooperation and participation in Asgardia is not as simple as the rest of the world. So one of the reasons I have more motivation to cooperate more in parliament is that I think the opportunity for the participation of Persian speaking people should not be eliminated.

Of course, personally, collaborating in Asgardia is a new experience for all contributors. People from all over the world have come together in this nation to work for an interesting goal. It is very interesting that most of the people participated in Asgardia, not for personal benefit, but for creating a futuristic society with transcendental goals. I can tell that most of those who work in Asgardia, no matter which country they belong to, are among the most well-intentioned people you can find on the planet.

At the same time, we all hope that what we do now, will have a great impact on human history. Asgardia can be the basis of the right way to spread humanity beyond the planet earth. Participation in such a project is a historic opportunity for all of us.

So I can say from a personal perspective, there are two main motivators for me and my colleagues to contribute to this society. Participation in building a special Nation with special goals. This is so near to the point mentioned by our former prime minister, Ana Mercedes Diaz in our last official meeting in parliament.

Our readers would like to know you better. What can you tell us about yourself?

Born in Tehran in 1973, I grow up in Iran. I studied Mathematics and Computer Engineering at the university and I spent almost all my career in research institutes. I’ve surrounded by lovely family relationships and friends and I am so interested in Cultural experiences, Theoretical Subjects, and History. My friends describe me as someone with a philosophical sense of humor and a great interest in foods! I am supporting animals and environmental protection and open source movement.

What is the biggest challenge that Asgardia has at this moment?

Whether now or in the future, there are many challenges on the way of Asgardia. Some of them are predictable. For example, the challenge of multiculturalism, technology, and recognition by other nations. I believe that all the people who are officially working with Asgardia are well aware of the difficulties on the way forward. However, if I want to name one important challenge, I think I should go for the Economy. I think if we can successfully build a sustainable economy with the model of our nation, then we can have a long-term look to the future. On this situation, time will help us to overcome the problems.

Do you believe Asgardia will be recognized as a nation?

The recognition of Asgardia by other nations depends on two factors: legal issues and reputation. We need professional help to resolve legal issues, which have been already pursuing in Asgardia administration. Some political activities and negotiations are also ongoing. But about the reputation, I believe it should be achieved over time. If we maintain on good continuity, we will end with a level of credibility that other nations cannot deny our existence. There may be some conflicts of interest. However, in my opinion, if we act smart enough, it is not impossible for Asgardia to be recognized by other nations and I am very optimistic about this.  

Would you encourage anybody to be an Asgardian? After all, everyone on Earth belongs to a nation already.

Asgardia is a great opportunity for everyone to be able to contribute on building a futuristic society. This nation is going to build on the best humankind experiences. Therefore, I think we should encourage all the people who are interested in having a role in shaping the future of humanity to join Asgardia.

In addition, participation in Asgardia does not mean the denial of terrestrial nationality. Asgardia can be an ideal example of the cooperation of people from different nationalities, and it is a two-way interaction. Asgardians can introduce the goals and aspirations of Asgardia to their own nations, meanwhile, Asgardia can use the cultural, scientific, and social experiences of the nations that Asgardians belongs to.

Rebekah Berg