Saber Rattling Down, way down, South

So once more the Argentinian gov’t is talking, blustering, about the Malvinas and generally making themselves irritating to all right thinking (Tory) Englishmen. This short article from DIQ, one of the several excellent military info/show groups based in the UK (who needs spies when you have Janes and these guys?), was eye opening.

As the 30th anniversary of the Falklands War arrives over the horizon like a rather fearsome storm cloud, the media hysteria in both countries is slowly building to a fever pitch. The British media, going through a periodic bout of jingoism, is awash with scaremongering over the state of the island’s defences; while the Argentine media is dominated by heated debate about the ‘militarisation’ of the islands and British imperialism. As this author has already discussed, the frequent articles released by men such as Admiral Sandy Woodward warning of the immense military vulnerability of the islands have very little grounding in reality. The military balance in the South Atlantic is very strongly rooted in the favour of the UK and this is unlikely to change in the near future. Of arguably much greater significance to the Falklands debate are the political and economic factors that dominate the current tensions. As will be shown there is neither the political will nor the economic capability for Argentina to attempt any kind of military action against the islands.

Okay so the Brits stole the islands for a coaling station a century and a half ago, get over it for crying out loud. Okay so there’s oil there I’m sure the UK will work a win win deal, they’re almost as good at that as they are at winning wars. Thumping the drums of war seems a way of life for the Argentine’s vacuous Gov’ts it’s a way of distracting attention from the Gov’ts many failures. An article in AWST (aviation Week and Space Technology) last week discussed the technical, tactical and professional aspects of such a face down and thee fact is that even a senescent UK military could take down the Argentines with little trouble.

But in the long run the economic war outlined in the DIQ article is more threatening, though unlikely to cause any short term change. The fact is that the islanders like their life,and the Brits will protect their own. In the short term oil and gas may even make the island grow, but if the recent past is an indication the islands youth will move away and unless something draws new blood back eventually there will be a ghost town and the Brits will withdraw voluntarily.

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