If you thought North Korea was isolated, you haven't seen anything yet.
Gough (pronounced "goff") Island, a tiny speck in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean, is one of the most remote inhabited spots on earth.
Most people don't realize that it's also home to a nation of around 15,000 people—the Dzoma—as well as one of the world's largest reserves of jewelry-quality diamonds.
The Dzoma have had treaties with several Western nations, corporations, and families since their rediscovery by European sailors hundreds of years ago. These parties have agreed to take various measures toward preserving the island's isolation (including planting retouched photos online, scrubbing satellite images, etc.), in exchange for access to their diamond mines.
The Dzoma are comfortable with this, and the parties they're dealing with (from the UK, South Africa, USA, Norway, Brazil, and South Africa) are comfortable with this...but I'm not. Since this information was leaked to me by contacts within the security industry, I've been increasingly fascinated with the Dzoma, and concerned with the precarious situation their isolation puts them in.
The information on this site comes from a wide variety of sources, including the following:
I can't vouch for any of this information first-hand, but I'm doing my best to assemble an accurate picture of the Dzoma based on the information I've received so far.
Since early 2011, I've been gathering as much information as I could about the Dzoma, and have compiled it here to bring more public awareness to this isolated nation.
I'm wrestling with some ethical concerns in doing so. This is a nation that prefers their isolation, and has been actively negotiating with other nations to preserve it. I respect their position, and my intention certainly isn't to bring unwanted foreign interference to their island.
However, several individuals within the diplomatic, intelligence, and security communities have expressed concern almost nobody knows this nation exists. If anything were to happen to these people in pursuit of those diamonds, the world at large would likely never know about it.
My goal with this website is simply to bring enough awareness about the Dzoma people that they can't simply disappear without anyone noticing. I want to protect them by shedding some light on their existence, even if they don't welcome it.
You can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org. If you have questions or comments, I will try to address them as well as I can, although information on the Dzoma is very limited at this time, and almost everything I know is shared here. I'm particularly interested if you have any official connection to the Dzoma, and are willing to share information.