The Treaty on Principles Governing the Activities of States in the Exploration and Use of Outer Space, including the Moon and Other Celestial Bodies (commonly known as TPGASEUOSMOCB?) is an agreement among nations that forms the basis of international space law. It entered into force on October 10, 1967, and remains in force today (although some U.S. House Republicans are demanding that President Obama abrogate the treaty in exchange for raising the debt ceiling – “treaties are for wusses.”).
The treaty expresses the Pollyanna notion that space (the final frontier to Trekkies) is the common
heritage of mankind and that the exploration of it shall be done for the benefit of the entire world and the nations therein. Extra-terrestrial spokesbeings have not as yet weighed in on this declaration; it could prove amusing.
All parties to the treaty have agreed not to place nuclear weapons or any other weapons of mass destruction (including Justin Bieber recordings) in Earth orbit. Nor will they place such forbidden items on the Moon or any other celestial body (including but not limited to planets, asteroids and supermodels) or otherwise station them in outer space. In a nod to Wayne Lapierre and his merry band of second amendment groupies, AK47s, Saturday Night Specials and other weapons of not-quite-mass destruction are not forbidden.
The treaty exclusively limits the use of the Moon and other celestial bodies to peaceful purposes such as church socials, love-ins and group sing-alongs. The jumping of cows over the Moon and other celestial bodies was not addressed.
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