A recent announcement of a DXpedition to the Principality of Seborga briefly raised the hopes of The Deserving that a New One was one the horizon. HA3HK announced an operation from the small enclave in Italy using the callsign T03HK (Tango Zero Three Hotel Kilo), but within days announced he would not be using the daring T03 call.
The Principality of Seborga, also known as a micro-nation, has claimed independence since the early 1960's, due to being overlooked in the Act of Unification for the Kingdom of Italy in 1861, and has even had an informally elected prince, Prince Giorgio Carbone, know locally as 'Your Tremendousness'. We point out the prince's titular title in order to avoid any confusion with the leader of the Lost Island DX Society, Cousin QRM. The LIDS have actively encouraged the promotion of micro-nations for classification as separate DX entities, and the Principality of Seborga certainly adheres to the requirements.
The decision by HA3HK to not use the T03 call (an unassigned ITU prefix) is purported to be motivated by the encouragement of the Seborga ruling council and his desire to adhere to Italian law. Given the proliferation of '300 Watt' amplifiers in Italy, this seems akin to worrying about a smoking ban in the middle of a forest fire, but adherence to law and order is always safest.
Sources close to the Serborga administration have given the Fi-Ni Report exclusive background on why they discouraged HA3HK from using the T03 callsign.
When the Seborga town council learned of the planned DXpedition, they began researching ham radio and in particular the peculiar world of DXing. After reviewing stories in QST, the DX Magazine, and other sources with reports of DXpeditions, they began to comprehend the full impact of the possibility of the Principality of Seborga becoming a New One. While the international recognition of Seborgian independence was attractive, the town council feared the small enclave could not withstand the inevitable invasion of Finns, Germans, English, and American DXpeditioners desiring to activate the newly declared DX entity. Last fall, a bus load of errant Estonians on a weekend drinking binge had broken down in Seborga and nearly destroyed the village square in their revelry and terrorized the local livestock to the point where milk and cheese production was down almost 50% for the following month. On the bright side, they did manage to exhaust the previous year's vintage of a particularly nasty local Cabernet Sauvignon that the residents had begun using as a degreaser.
The local council officially proclaimed that they did not want to antagonize the Italian government and thought the T03 DXpedtion might be considered an act of aggression, hence they discouraged HA3HK from using his desired callsign. HA3HK has announced that he will adhere to the Italian rules for operation by a visiting amateur, including the use of a I-prefix for the operation. There are rumors, though, that he has invited a contingent of ES amateurs to join him on the operation. No word on if they have accepted.