Sixty Joyless De-Britished Uncrowned Commonpoor Years (1949-2009)

Elizabeth II Vice-Regal Saint: Remembering Paul Comtois (1895–1966), Lt.-Governor of Québec
Britannic Inheritance: Britain's proud legacy. What legacy will America leave?
English Debate: Daniel Hannan revels in making mince meat of Gordon Brown
Crazy Canucks: British MP banned from Canada on national security grounds
Happy St. Patrick's: Will Ireland ever return to the Commonwealth?
Voyage Through the Commonwealth: World cruise around the faded bits of pink.
No Queen for the Green: The Green Party of Canada votes to dispense with monarchy.
"Sir Edward Kennedy": The Queen has awarded the senator an honorary Knighthood.
President Obama: Hates Britain, but is keen to meet the Queen?
The Princess Royal: Princess Anne "outstanding" in Australia.
H.M.S. Victory: In 1744, 1000 sailors went down with a cargo of gold.
Queen's Commonwealth: Britain is letting the Commonwealth die.
Justice Kirby: His support for monarchy almost lost him appointment to High Court
Royal Military Academy: Sandhurst abolishes the Apostles' Creed.
Air Marshal Alec Maisner, R.I.P. Half Polish, half German and 100% British.
Cherie Blair: Not a vain, self regarding, shallow thinking viper after all.
Harry Potter: Celebrated rich kid thinks the Royals should not be celebrated
The Royal Jelly: A new king has been coronated, and his subjects are in a merry mood
Victoria Cross: Australian TROOPER MARK DONALDSON awarded the VC
Godless Buses: Royal Navy veteran, Ron Heather, refuses to drive his bus
Labour's Class War: To expunge those with the slightest pretensions to gentility
100 Top English Novels of All Time: The Essential Fictional Library
BIG BEN: Celebrating 150 Years of the Clock Tower

Monday, 2 April 2007

The Falklands War

TWENTY-FIVE YEARS AGO TODAY, on April 2, 1982, the unpopular Argentine military dictator, Leopoldo Fortunato Galtieri Castelli, launched his ill-fated invasion of the British Falkland Islands on the bogus pretense* that the "Malvinas" were a province of Argentina — as they had been according to Argentina from 1820 to 1833, before Britain re-gained control over them. Galtieri's disastrous (and murderous) short term in office would be the last such Military Junta to rule over Argentina.

Of course all wars are unfortunate business (some more unfortunate than others), but as far as this particular conflict went, you probably couldn't ask for anything more perfect, anything more just. Clear unprovoked aggression against a nation's territory and inhabited people, determined democratic resolve that is popularly backed at home with a decisive and bold leader in the name of Margaret Thatcher, and militarily executed with an efficiency of force and time that minimises the casulaties on both sides. The number of dead were less than a thousand, and the troops in the spring war, who went to the bottom of the world to fight it, were home even before the beginning of the summer season. In very short order, the world's majority communists, juntas and fashionable tyrants of the day were put on notice by Great Britain, which contributed immeasurably to global peace and security, reaffirmed the Anglo-American "special relationship" and allowed the Mother Country to withdraw with continued dignity wherever Her Majesty's Realms and Dependents constitutionally desired it.

In the shadow of Suez, the end of Empire and the Winter of Discontent, it was a last, and generally welcomed, patriotic and nostalgic gasp of Pax Britannica.

* Argentina claims it theirs as a result of the 1790 Nootka Convention, whereby Britain renounced all of its South American possessions to Spain. However, the Falklands have been populated with British nationals ever since 1833, which makes Argentina's present sovereignty over the Islands non-existent.


Dundonald said...

How poignant that the 25th anniversary should come at this juncture—one where the impotence of our current political leadership is being put on display before the world. After spending the first few days of the Iranian hostage crisis bellowing like a foghorn, Tony Blair has now substituted bellicose rhetoric with silence.

Let’s raise a glass to the heroes of the Falklands campaign, for it may be the last such endeavour from a land where the past is increasingly a foreign country.

Beaverbrook said...

Yes, Tony Blair is not having a Finest Hour moment. Now, in my opinion, there are two very legitimate ways of going about this. You either come out hard or you come out patient, but you don't go patient after going hard - as Tony has just done, giving the upperhand to the Iranians, who have skillfully called his bluff. It is B.S. that you look weak if you do it patiently, because you can always ratch it up a notch, but you can't ratch it down. Now he's beginning to look like Jimmy Carter.

Scott said...

The fact is, Blair doesn't dare attack Iran for fear of Paris-esque riots across the dense Muslim parts of Britain.

A blockade should have started by now.

Younghusband said...

The Victoria Cross awarded to the Falklands' hero Colonel Herbert "H" Jones is the centrepiece of an exhibition on the Falklands War at the National Army Museum in London right now.
And all the while Becket and Blair mourn the over 900 dead, making no distinction between those of his country who died defending Brits and those who invaded and lost, and yet still claim what never belionged to them in the first place.
There was never an Argentina in 1790. How about considering rewriting your sentnce as:
"Canada claims Gibraltar as its as a result of the 1713 Treaty of Utrecht whereby Spain renounced the territory to Britin."

Younghusband said...

My God, all those spelling errors. It just makes me look like another uneducated boor.
Blame it on the new keyboard.

Beaverbrook said...

Mourning the loss of life on the other side is not what's happening. Britain "regrets" the loss of life on both sides, and I think it is proper that this be done. We can regret the loss of life while believing in the virtue of our cause, which is neither apologizing nor mourning for the loss of life on the other side.

Just as everything in Canada was once British, everything in Argentina was once Spanish. It's called inheritance, and on that basis Argentina is free to pursue legitimate claims. The Falklands were discovered by the English, settled by the French, lost to the British, ceded to the Spanish (except fishing rights), inherited by the Argentines (who did not exercise sovereignty over them), populated by the British, invaded by the Argentines and retaken by the British. So yeah, quite the history, but quite rightly British today, which is now guided by the principle of self determination.

Unrepentant Jacobite said...

No, sir, the Malvinas - not "Falklands" - are STILL rightfully Argentinian. And one day soon, they will be free from British rule, and back with it's rightful owner.

I'll salute the day when the Brits are kicked out, once and for all, from the islands.

Let no Paddies back the Crown!
Viva Las Islas Malvinas!
Viva Argentina!