No, Nicaragua Did Not Invade Costa Rica Because of Google Maps

Remember how Nicaraguan troops totally accidentally violated the territorial integrity of Costa Rica because Google Maps got the borders wrong? Turns out it was just a run of the mill military incursion, and Nicaragua is refusing to back down.

It sounded like a great story—gosh, our infantile reliance on technology for the most basic functions has extended to the military realm, and hilarity has ensued! On the other hand, why would the Nicaraguan army just randomly be roaming around its borders as shown on Google Maps? And if it was really all a misunderstanding, wouldn't they turn around and leave, instead of setting up shop? From the New York Times' Robert Mackey:

Accidental invasions happen, but they generally last no more than a few minutes or hours - just long enough for someone to turn the map the right way round and sheepishly withdraw to their own side of the imaginary lines that keep the world at peace, more or less. But Nicaragua's troops have now for three weeks been in what most of the world recognizes as Costa Rican territory.

In fact, far from withdrawing the troops, Nicaragua has ignored a request from the Organization of American States to do so, and instead dispatched a delegation of top military officers and legislators to visit them on the disputed frontier.

Turns out the Nicaraguan army deliberately invaded Costa Rica to settle an ancient territorial dispute, and when someone asked them why, they offered the "dude, check Google Maps—it's legit" defense. But they were basically just being dicks about it. Accidental invasions based on map errors generally don't lead to nationalist rallies in support of the troops like this one, from Wednesday:

No, Nicaragua Did Not Invade Costa Rica Because of Google Maps