John Kerry Sails into a New Falklands Conflict in London

The new U.S. Secretary of State set off alarm bells in London over his comments regarding the U.K.'s disputed possession of the Falkland Islands

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Jacquelyn Martin / Reuters

Reporters ask questions during a news conference with U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Britain's Foreign Secretary William Hague at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office in central London on Feb. 25, 2013

If there’s one thing every incoming U.S. Secretary of State learns fast, it’s that Britannia is a needy and insecure partner, constantly seeking reassurance that America loves and values her, occasionally threatening distance, but only to cling more tightly than ever. John Kerry began with all the right moves on his first official trip abroad since starting his new job earlier this month, landing in London before any other national capital and lavishing praise and gratitude on his hosts. He even produced a winsome little anecdote during a Feb. 25 press conference with U.K. Foreign Secretary William Hague that testified to a lengthy association with the U.K. As a young boy, he got lost in London Zoo, recounted Kerry, a touch misty-eyed. He wanted to thank the person who found him.

During that childhood adventure, the dangerous beasts were safely behind bars. In the gilded splendor of London’s Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO), Kerry found himself nose to nose with the uncaged British press. They weren’t mollified by his declarations of affection. He’s not Hillary, doesn’t have the X factor — or the XX factor — that make her a crowd puller across Europe.

And there was a key omission in his opening remarks. He name-checked topics discussed with Prime Minister David Cameron over breakfast and in several hours of close talks with Hague: all the hot spots of the Middle East, Afghanistan, U.S.-E.U. trade, the agenda for the next G-8 summit in Northern Ireland in June. But of the Falkland Islands — never call them Las Malvinas in the U.K. — and the increasingly bellicose rhetoric issuing from Argentina, Kerry made no mention.

The FCO organizes press conferences like weddings, visitors on one side, hosts on the other, and inevitably the first question that came whistling from the British side of the aisle was about the Falklands’ planned March 10 to 11 referendum. Islanders will be asked, “Do you wish the Falkland Islands to retain their current political status as an overseas territory of the United Kingdom?” That they will answer with a resounding “Yes!” is not in doubt. That’s the sort of enthusiasm Brits wanted from Kerry too. Instead they got this:

Let me be very clear about our position with respect to the Falklands, which I believe is clear. First of all, I’m not going to comment, nor is the President, on a referendum that has yet to take place, hasn’t taken place. Our position on the Falklands has not changed. The United States recognizes de facto U.K. administration of the islands but takes no position on the question of parties’ sovereignty claims thereto. We support co-operation between U.K. and Argentina on practical matters.

As Kerry left the building, en route for a quick event with the U.S. ambassador and thence to the airport to the next stop of his nine-country tour, London’s Evening Standard newspaper was already printing the headline that is likely to define the London leg: “Visiting John Kerry Refuses to Back Falklands Vote.”

Bigger bear traps await over the next few days, especially in Rome where a Friends of Syria summit scheduled for Thursday may not proceed after Syria’s opposition National Coalition said it would not attend in protest at “the international silence on the crimes committed every day against our people.” Hague, due to participate as well, conveyed a degree of skepticism about whether the summit could be salvaged. Kerry struck a more bullish tone — the Syrian opposition would not be “left dangling in the wind,” he said, and the U.S. was intent on “changing the calculation of President Assad on the ground.” Pushed by the U.S. and beastly British media to flesh out that statement and comment specifically on the prospect of arming the opposition, he retreated into a thicket of double negatives and evasions. “The moment is ripe for us to be considering what more we can do,” he said, adding that “we are not coming to Rome simply to talk.” If the main parties to the discussion fail to show up, that will raise questions about what he’s doing there at all.

68 comments
MarieShanahan
MarieShanahan

I understand your comment, Madam, but must dispute the part of the Americans being "cold or calculating" toward Britain- or at least the people of both countries.  President Obama got into more trouble for being rude to Britain than just about anything else.  I hope that there is enough left of "us" - forget any notions of the "special relationship" - but us:  The USA and UK, to fight for.  We see you as family, not allies.  There are just as many angry and insulted Americans over these antics as there are Britons.


We stand with you.  We're still here.  Please don't forget that the Obama will be leaving office in two years.  But this also means that he has two years to turn this thing around.  I hope he really apologizes and that there's a way back before he leaves office.  Britain deserves all of that any more.

JoannaMay
JoannaMay

It seems that John Kerry was poorly briefed in not realising the effect of his statements before the British press pack. Time's article paints the British in an an unflattering light, but in truth the British press does obsess about the "special relationship" with the US, which the rest of the British public does not. Most of us British people know that the US ruthlessly pursues its own self-interest, and cares little about us. It is somewhat ironic that the British, in seeking support for the Falklands, are actually not pursuing their own interests, but that of the Falkland Islanders. The Falkland Islanders govern themselves, under the protection of the UK. They seek to retain the right to self-determination, and everyone knows they will vote overwhelmingly in the referendum for that situation to continue. The Argentinians are seeking to bully them into submission. It is a cheek for the Argentinians to characterise this as a situation of "colonialism". The original inhabitants of what is now Argentina were colonised and displaced by Europeans - much as occurred in the good old USA.

BritBob
BritBob

Argentina keeps harping on about the UN, well Argentina terminated peaceful sovereignty negotiations with the UN under resolution 2065 in April 1982 and instead chose to settle its claims of sovereignty by its illegal invasion and its unlawful disregard for UN resolution 502.  Ban Ki-Moon stated on 12th November that, 'I don't think Security Council members (UK) are violating 'relevant' UN resolutions.'  Ban Ki-Moon also confirmed that the Falkland Islanders DO have the right to self determination.

Britain claimed the Falklands in 1765. The islands were uninhabited for long periods. Vernet the Argentine hero obtained permission from Britain to set up a seal business on the islands but he later switched allegiance to Argentina when he was made governor - an illegal act.

In 1850 Britain and Argentina signed a peace treaty, known as 'the Convention of Settlement'. Although the treaty did not mention the Falklands by name, it is a principle that in a peace treaty any matters not mentioned are fixed by the treaty in the state in which the treaty was signed. The purpose of the treaty was to 'restore perfect relations' and to 'settle ANY outstanding differences.'  The Argentine's had protested about the British presence on the Falklands right up to 1849 but did not make another sovereignty protest until 1941 - under international law sovereignty cases are usually considered defunct if there is a gap of 50 years or more between sovereignty claims.

SeanMoore
SeanMoore

While Kerry's statements are interesting, a better question is could the UK take back the Falklands like they did in 1982 if Argentina invaded?  I understand there is a larger military presence in the Falklands now than there was in 1982, including RAF assets, so it would be more difficult for Argentina to take the islands.  But if they succeed, the Royal Navy is a diferent force than it was in 1982.  Does the RN even have fixed wing aircraft anymore?  If not, replicating the successful 1982 landing in Falkland Sound in 1982 without fixed wing air cover seems difficult if not impossible.  In 1982 the US supported the UK, but did not send any troops or planes.  I suspect the US would provide similar help in any new conflict.  But if the UK thinks the US would provide air assets or troops in any new Falklands conflict, I don't see much support from American taxpayers.

cheshirecatsmeow
cheshirecatsmeow

Kerry is a piece of liberal crap. Detritus from the VietNam war.

LeinsterMan
LeinsterMan

I recently met US navy personnel in Dublin when there was the Notre Dame v. Navy game. And I told the Navy personnel that your country really needs to figure out who its allies are. Some of the supporters from Annapolis, those old enough, remembered the war thirty years ago, and said they all supported the UK then and now. Your country so needs to catch itself on and stand by the convictions of democracy, especially to your most important military ally, the UK. If your country starts to go it alone and not support the UK on the Falklands well, then I don't see why the UK should get involved in these foreign wars in the middle east. And if the UK pulls out of being your ally, I pretty sure Canada, Australia and New Zealand will follow suit. They are independent nations but at least they have some idea of loyalty to the UK, as opposed to the USA right now.

LeinsterMan
LeinsterMan

I gave up and stopped reading this article after the first sentence with this portrayal of the UK as some sort of needy, wimpish wet blanket. Let's make this clear to you, TIME, its editors, and the Obama administration. The issue of the Falklands is far more important to the UK (and the Commonwealth) than this side show, the war on terror. If you hadnt realised after 30 years since the last war on the Falklands, the UK would in the event of any threat against its citizens throw every means at its disposal to defend the people on the islands who wish to remain British. It is very insulting to Britain that this 'great ally' (USA) with the 'special relationship' takes this ambivalent attitude, especially on the core issue of defending democracy which the US constantly goes on and on about. And yet when push comes to shove your country actually tries to appease Argentina, just as Reagan did (initially). Where is the much trumpeted moral fibre of the United States? What has happened to it? Yours, disgusted in Dublin, Ireland.

CesarAntonioLemos
CesarAntonioLemos

QUE SE VA A NEGAR  KERRY SI TANTO LOS NORTEAMERICANOS COMO EL DELIRANTE DE EL MINISTRO DE INGLATERRA CAMERON SON JUNTO A KERRY LOS CAPITANES DE LAS NAVES PIRATAS DE NUESTROS SIGLOS POR LAS CUALES SE TIENEN QUE APOYAR  ENTRE SI EN CUBRIR SUS DELITOS DE LESA HUMANIDAD EN AFGANISTAN,IRAQ,SIRIA Y MUCHO MENOS NO DEJAR DE APOYAR LA ADMINISTRACION PIRATA EN EL ATLANTICO SUR Y EN MALVINAS  NO PODEMOS ESPERAR DE EEUU CUANDO NOS TRAICIONARON EN LA GUERRA DEL 2 DE ABRIL DE 1982

BritBob
BritBob

The fact is Argentina's claim to the islands is based on proximity and 5 settlers ,who had only been on the islands a few weeks, chosing to return to South America in 1833.

Argentina terminated peaceful sovereignty negotiations with the UK in April 1982 and instead chose to settle its claims of sovereignty by its illagal invasion and unlawful disregard to UN resolution 502. Ban Ki-Moon confirmed on 12th November 2012 that the UK was not in breach of any 'relevant' UN resolutions over the Falklands and that the islanders DO have the right to self determination.  Argentina has no legal claim to the Falklands otherwise they would have taken their case to the Courts of International Justice. Who knows, perhaps in 20 to 30 years time the Falkland Islands may become an independent nation. It's their choice not Argentina's.

mrbomb13
mrbomb13

Presidential Candidate John Kerry (2004) = Flip Flopper

Secretary of State John Kerry (2013) = Doublespeak Flip Flopper

...what's changed?

vstillwell
vstillwell

Geesh. These historical claims to tiny islands is getting old. If the people of the Falklands want to remain British, so be it. I would think after all the garbage Britain has been drug through supporting us these last 15 years, we should be more than happy to support them in this. Frankly, the only ones who have a claim to those islands are the people living on them. 

Mark_AnthoNYC
Mark_AnthoNYC

Wow. There is still a sensitivity surrounding the Falklands war? Really? How long ago was that? Get over yourselves Brits.

j.villain1
j.villain1

>"If there’s one thing every incoming U.S. Secretary of State learns fast, it’s that Britannia is a needy and insecure partner, constantly seeking reassurance that America loves and values her,"

You can replace Britannia with Israel in that sentence.

RufusTrotman
RufusTrotman

Dear Catherine, the thing is that the UK are very observant. Possibly more so than you're used to.


They see USAF operations on one British Overseas Territory, and they remember the monsterous act that gave the US their nice uninhabited atoll to build a base on, on a different British Overseas Territory in the Indian Ocean.

They saw Clinton (her of the XX factor) offering her services to mediate, when there was no possible way that she couldn't have known that the UK is committed not to discuss soverignty without the consent of the people who have lived on the Falkland Islands since before the USA had a Pacific coast.


They see the President trying to refer to the Falkland Islands as the Malvinas, and somehow managing to get the Maldives instead. And by the way, if you shouldn't refer to the Falkland Islands as the Malvinas in the UK then you really really shouldn't refer to them so if you ever go to the Falkland Islands.


They've seen more than twice as many servicemen shipped home in boxes as were lost in the Falklands conflict as a result of Britain supporting the USA in Afghanistan and Iraq (I guess that's the needy and insecure side of our nature).


They see allies of the US treated far more shabbily than neutral or even hostile countries, and it seems the closer the alliance the worse the treatment.

They see this pattern and ask themselves, why are we supporting them in wars that are getting our countrymen killed when they won't even support us in area of policy where they already do very nicely out of us already.

NickyHarts1
NickyHarts1

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BritBob
BritBob

The Falkland Islands were claimed by Britain in 1765 - Argentina did not inherit the islands from Spain. Settlements came and went and for long periods the islands were uninhabited. The Argentine hero Vernet obtained permission from Britain to set up a colony on the islands but was then made governor by the Argentine's - an illegal act. In 1833 the British asked Vernet's garrison to leave but the majority of the settlers chose to stay. Only 5 chose to return to Argentina and they had only been on the islands a few weeks - the basis of Argentina's claim.

Argentina terminated peaceful sovereignty negotiations with the UK under UN resolution 2065 in April 1982 and instead chose to settle its claims to sovereignty by its illegal invasion and unlawful disregard for UN resolution 502.

On 12th December 2012 the Secretary General of the UN put to bed two Argentine claims, namely that the UK was in breach of UN resolutions and that the Falkland Islanders do not have the right to self determination. When being interviewed by a reporter from the Argentine newspaper Tiempo Argentina about the forthcoming Falklands referendum, Ban Ki-Moon said, 'I don't think Security Council members are violating relevant UN resolutions' and ' The impression is that people who are living under certain conditions should have access to certain level of capacities so that they can decide on their own future.'

LeinsterMan
LeinsterMan

@SeanMoore There's two big 'if''s here. 1. That Argentina would attempt an invasion and 2. They would succeed. Both scenarios are unlikely. Regarding the first of these; Argentina doesn't have the political will to try it nor the military hardware to take on such an operation. The political backlash the country would receive for precipitating another war, one which would inevitably be more costly than the last, would mean the country would be shunned by the entire global community. In practical military terms, if they did attempt it, to land an amphibious force,  such a task force would be identified long before it left the mainland. The British have listening and radar stations at three locations on the islands and these would detect an invasion force well in advance, while simultaneously the islands would be reinforced by 16 Air Assault Brigade within 48 hours (Paras, Ghurkas, Royal Irish Regiment).  One single submarine off the Argentinian coast could fairly well reduce Argentina's air capability, mostly based at Rio Gallegos airfield with tomahawk cruise missiles, and the four Eurofighters would be enough to hold off any air attack long enough for more Eurofighters to land at Mount Pleasant Airfield (MPA). Certainly 'if' Argentina did manage to take MPA, then certainly they would have ownership of the islands as the UK doesn't have carriers or carrier fixed wing aircraft which could provide cover for an amphibious landing. However its quite likely that the UK would attempt an assault as despite lacking air cover, the assets in the Argentinian airforce would be likely to have been decimated in any event. The UK's amphibious force is strong consisting of the assault ships Albio, Ocean and Bulwark and Royal Marines could be dispatched at short notice. So basically it would be a no-brainer by Argentina to even attempt it.

RufusTrotman
RufusTrotman

I think it's an issue of which bit of the American government you're dealing with. The Navy (and the entire Department of Defence) knows who their friends are.

The State Department seems to be the primary culprit for shafting their allies. Case in point: Alexander Haig (the then SecState) was going to pass the British plans to recapture South Georgia to Argentina in 1982 to demonstrate the "neutrality" of the US to Argentina.

fgodoy55
fgodoy55

@BritBob that's what we call "Disinformation". Thank you for your example. Now, if you wish to give an accurate opinion go and study the issue properly. Regards.

CesarAntonioLemos
CesarAntonioLemos

@BritBob TE QUIERO RESPONDER UNA COSA Y ES UN ERROR TUYO SEGURO SOS UN CHILENO TRAIDOR DE LA EPOCA DE PINOCHET PERO TE LLEVO A UNA HISTORIA CON FUNDAMENTO LOS PRIMEROS POBLADORES ARGENTINOS EN HASTA EL FINAL CUANDO APARECIERON LOS PIRATAS ASESINOS BRITANICOS A LAS MALVINAS NO ESTUVIERON SOLO UN PAR DE SEMANAS TUVIERON MUCHOS AÑOS DESDE LA INDEPENDENCIA ARGENTINA DE 1810 EN ADELANTE LUEGO QUE LOS REYES DE ESPAÑA RECONOCIERON NUESTRA PROCLAMACION DE INDEPENDENCIA LAS MALVINAS ESTABA BAJO BANDERA ESPAÑOLA Y CUANDO ARGENTINA SE INDEPENDIZO DE LA COLONIA ESPAÑOLA LOS ESPAÑOLES NOS ENTREGARON LAS ISLAS MALVINAS GEORGIAS Y SANDWICH DEL SUR AVERIGUA EN ENCARTA Y LA HISTORIA DE MALVINAS Y NO FUERON LOS PRIMEROS EN DESCUBRIRLOS LOS INGLESES FUERON LA COLONIA FRANCESA PERO EN 1833 LUEGO QUE FRACASARA LA INVASION A BUENOS AIRES QUE FUERON EXPULSADOS POR LOS PROPIOS CIVILES DE LA CIUDAD Y EJERCITO ARGENTINO NO SE QUISIERON IR CON MANOS VACIAS FUERON DIRECTO A LAS MALVINAS DONDE HABIA POCOS HABITANTES EN ESA EPOCA.LAS MALVINAS SON Y SERAN SIEMPRE ARGENTINA

CesarAntonioLemos
CesarAntonioLemos

@vstillwell LOS ISLEÑOS TIENEN DERECHO A QUEDARSE PORQUE SON PROPIETARIOS DE SUS CASAS Y VIVIENDAS Y SERAN RESPETADOS SOLO CON UNA SOLA CONDICION BAJO BANDERA ARGENTINA Y REPUBLICANOS SIN TENER QUE MANTENER A LA REINA CON SUS RECAUDACIONES NI JURAR POR ELLA PERO NO PUEDE SER UNA NACION NO CUBRE LOS ANTECEDENTES NI LA CANTIDAD DE POBLACION ADEMAS LOS ISLEÑOS DEBERIAN ESTAR AGRADECIDOS DE LOS ARGENTINOS PORQUE LUEGO DE LA FINAL DE LA GUERRA DEL AÑO 1982 ELLOS RECIEN HAY FUERON RECONOCIDOS POR LA REINA Y PARLAMENTO INGLES COMO CIUDADANOS DE PRIMERA ANTES ERAN OLVIDADOS SOLO PARA ROBARLES LAS RECAUDACIONES DEL PBI Y LA RIQUEZAS NATURALES QUE TENGAN ENCUENTA ESO EN EL REFERENDUM Y USTED

DeweySayenoff
DeweySayenoff

@vstillwell As of 2012, there were less than 3000 residents of the Falklands.  The United States has never demanded or forced the UK to support us in any of our adventures.  If they regret doing it, so be it.  But since the Falkland islands have no strategic value, no commercial value, no tactical value, are no security threat (unless you consider wool exports a threat to national security) and basically are a bunch of rocks in the South Western Atlantic populated by sheep herders, this particular urination contest between the UK and Argentina is basically little more than a nationalistic grudge match complicated by a meaningless UN position. (Since when has the UN had any meaningful impact on world affairs?  1950's Korea?).

I agree that the islanders should be allowed to decide their affiliations, but if push comes to shove, let the British and Argentinians murder each other by the tens of thousands in order for these 3000 or less people to live under the flag of their choice.  At least the U.S., and the world, can point to someone ELSE for a change decrying the use of violence and wasted lives in an utterly pointless conflict.

LeinsterMan
LeinsterMan

@Mark_AnthoNYC errr yes, there is... because 1000 men on both sides lost their lives in a conflict that was over in the space of 8 weeks, and that's an intense series of combat actions. Perhaps if you cared to read about the war you would actually know something about this conflict before issuing this sort of statement.

alan74
alan74

No sensitivity - UK won. Unlike USA in Iraq,Afganistan etc. want to make sure we keep it that way - as long as the Falkland Islanders want it that way.

RufusTrotman
RufusTrotman

@Mark_AnthoNYC Since the Argentinian invasion? Thirty one years in April.

Since the last time Argentina claimed soverignty despite the fact that they lost the war, the Falkland Islanders not wanting to be part of Argentina and their only practical arguement being basically "it's near us, so it must belong to us"? About thirty-one hours.

crygdyllyn
crygdyllyn

@RufusTrotman  As an American, I am embarrassed by our foreign policy behavior. The US takes the support of allies for granted. Regarding the Falklands, Argentina lost whatever claims it may have had when it went to war and lost. Issue decided - done. The US, I think, is trying to keep good relations with South American countries. What our ignoramuses in the State Department don't understand is the Chile, Brazil, Peru, etc either don't care or would like to see Argentina be put in its place. The US should declare open support for the referendum, and whatever its conclusion. Kerry was right in not taking a position on the sovereignty, but he should have endorsed the referendum process. 

dami
dami

britbob .. amigo te escribe un argentino y creo con todo respeto me dirijo hacia usted que esta muy equivocado en lo que dice.. las malvinas son argentinas sin duda alguna por una cuestion perimetral de nuestras tierras.. el derecho a la autodeterminacion no puede ser valida porque no cumplen los requisitos de normas mundiales para formarce como pais.. asi mismo la argentina esta comprometida a respetar sus costumbres y culturas pero siempre bajo la bandera de esta gran nacion que es la argentina... que piensa usted si pocas millas marinas de su pais le colonisaran desde otro pais sin querer retirarce ni aceptar el dialogo y pretender siempre la guerra para mantener la postura.. lo que ha echo inglaterra es puro colonilismo.. las malvinas fueron son y seran de la argentina le guste o no... y dejeme decirle algo.. antes de la colonisacion de españa sobre las islas habitaban gauchos e indigenas que si les llamaban a nuestros pimitivos habitantes y a ellos se les fu arrebatadas las tierras injustamente.. vivian en paz del ganado y las cocechas

fgodoy55
fgodoy55

@BritBob that's the british propaganda, re writing the story as many times did. Now. If you wish to understand the issue go And study It properly, from a scientific point of view And you will see why UN give place to Argentina's claim nowaday. Stop desinformating And trying to manipulate US oppinion. Regards.

j.villain1
j.villain1

@BritBob  

Would that be the same Moon who called last week for bombing Iran in violation on the UN charter?

RufusTrotman
RufusTrotman

@LeinsterMan @SeanMoore The UK doesn't have carriers at the moment, but there are two under construction but it's largely a moot point, in order to capture the islands MPA (which is built and hardened to full NATO specifications) would have to be destroyed. Argentina doesn't have anything except aircraft that could do that, the aircraft that they do have would almost certainly not come back (between the Eurofighters, the distance, their poor maintenance history and the large and expansive array of surface to air missiles that are around it, and even if they did make it back it's a fairly safe bet that their airbases would have been thoroughly shot up.


On a note of encouraging international understanding, it's probably worth making a few corrections to some things that have appeared in the Argentine press over the years: Ghurkas will take prisoners, and will treat them strictly according to international rules concerning prisoners of war. They won'r eat you, and they don't drink blood.

The legendary joke that some Falkland Islanders famously told  in 1982 (within earshot of some of the Argentine occupiers) does hold true though: 

"How can you tell if you offended a Ghurka yesterday?"

"When you get up in the morning, shake your head. If it doesn't fall off then you're probably all right."

RufusTrotman
RufusTrotman

Forgive my curiosity, but which bit is the disinformation?

The fact that >10 settlers chose to return to Argentina in 1833, when the garrison was requested to leave?

That the talks that the UN requested in 1966(?) continued until 1982?

That Security Council Resolution 502 calling for a complete withdrawl of Argentine forces was ignored by Argentina?

What Ban Ki Moon has said on the record?

Or that the UK offered to take the matter to the ICJ on numerous occasions (which were turned down by Argentina)?

jerry48
jerry48

@DeweySayenoff" The United States has never demanded or forced the UK to support us in any of our adventures." ARE YOU KIDDING ?

 what did the US do when Japan attacked HAWAII ??? ( no commercial value there back then ! it was not even full US territory ! ) the FALKLANDS were british territory and the Brits had to protect it !  end of story !

Mark_AnthoNYC
Mark_AnthoNYC

@LeinsterMan @Mark_AnthoNYC I know enough about the conflict and yet it's a footnote in the many wars of the 20th century. Maybe it's a significant event for the Brits, especially given that the entire 2nd half of the 20th century is a story of the death of colonialism. But for everyone else the fact that this is even on the radar anymore is laughable, hence Secretary Kerry's comments

This is like when the US went into Grenada...no one really cares anymore, except for the people on the island itself.

DeweySayenoff
DeweySayenoff

@alan74 Despite your dig at the U.S., we ARE getting out because the people in Iraq and Afghanistan don't want us there.  That wasn't the case when we went in.  And we had some decent reasons for invading, even if it turned out that one of them was entirely made up.  And how many wars have we actually STARTED in the last 10 years?

Not one.

How many have we ended?

One of two, and the second one will be wound down by 2014.

This begs the question: What would you folks be doing if the Falklanders decided to be under Argentinian control instead?  You're talking about opening a conflict that started 31 YEARS AGO.

 One wonders if this is less about supporting those who want British rule and more about the fading glory of, and setting of the sun on, the once mighty British Empire.  Nationalistic pride?  Find a better excuse for us to get involved.  You're all grown up.  We're not going to stop you if you want to go to war over this.

But at least we'll be able to point at ANOTHER country for engaging in utterly pointless and senseless warfare.

fgodoy55
fgodoy55

@crygdyllyn @RufusTrotman force doesn't give rights, treatments does, in Malvinas case there is any treatment. It is a case of usurpation. People living there are descendent of/or illegal planted population by alien force. Regards.

BritBob
BritBob

@fgodoy55 You need to study the facts of the matter and not rely on Argentine propaganda.

You are also wrong about the UN Ban Ki-Moon spoke to a reporter from the Argentine newspaper Tiempo Argentino on 12th November 2012 about the forthcoming Falklands referendum. The Secretary General confirmed two matters, namely that the UK was not in breach of any 'Relevant' UN resolutions over the Falklands and that the Islanders DO have the right to self determination. Here's what he said,

'I don't think Security Council members (UK) are violating relevant UN resolutions.' and 'The impression is that people who are living under certain conditions should have access to certain level of capacities so THAT THEY CAN DECIDE ON THEIR OWN FUTURE.'

BritBob
BritBob

@CesarAntonioLemos @jerry48 @DeweySayenoff Pirates?

If someone was illegally occupying my land I would take the matter to court. So why doesn't Argentina go to the Courts of International Justice and seek a judegement?

Answer - they have no case.

And the Falkland Islanders DO have the right to self determination.

CesarAntonioLemos
CesarAntonioLemos

@jerry48 @DeweySayenoff DEFENDIERON POR SUS RIQUEZAS LOS PIRATAS INGLESES Y LO DE  HAWAII ERA POR LA MISMA GUERRA QUE LE DECLARO ESTADOS UNIDOS AL IMPERIO JAPONES Y NO TIENE NADA QUE VER UNA COSA CON OTRA NO HAY EN HAWAII BANDERA JAPONESA NI GOBIERNO JAPONES EN MALVINAS HAY INVASORES TANTO DEL REINO UNIDO COMO LOS PROPIOS HABITANTES QUE NO SON DE ORIGEN DE  LAS ISLAS SON USURPADORES PERO IGUAL LOS DEJAMOS Y LES DAMOS DERECHO HACER REPUBLICANOS Y CON HOSPITALES DE PRIMER NIVEL Y TAMBIEN CONSTITUCION AUTONOMA PROPIA JUNTO A LA CONSTITUCION ARGENTINA Y BAJO BANDERA ARGENTINA Y CIUDADANOS CON LOS MISMOS DERECHOS QUE TODOS LOS ARGENTINOS

alan74
alan74

Magaret Thatcher cared about Granada - (apparanly) it was one of the few times her and Ronald Reagan fell out. If you thought the Falklands War was unimportant look at the results apart from the obvious liberation. Even the Argentians realised their Military govt was not infallible and before long the Generals were gone. Then like a domino affect other military govts in S Amerrica (Brazil) fell. Detah of colonism has given way to villagers in Pakistan/Afganistan been killed by drones. Don't celebrate death of colonism by murdering wedding parties. The UK is guilty of many crimes but don't think any country (USA) is innocent.

LeinsterMan
LeinsterMan

@Mark_AnthoNYC Oh so it's just a footnote is it? You do know it's the only conflict in which a ship was sunk by a submarine since the second world war resulting in the deaths of over 300 Argentinian sailors. Or perhaps you think it's a footnote, that the UK sent 20,000 servicemen 8000 miles in 100 ships and landed an amphibious force in an action which your own Ministry of Defence regarded as completely impossible. Comparing this to the US invasion of Grenada shows how little you know about the war. 

cheshirecatsmeow
cheshirecatsmeow

The death of colonialism was a disaster. Releasing the unwashed hoards to self government and death.

Tipsilon
Tipsilon

@DeweySayenoff @alan74 You don't seem to be aware of what is going on down there. Nobody is suggesting that Britain will initiate a war - only that it would defend those islands if they were attacked by Argentina. Given the recent Argentinian chest-beating about how they want they islands - and while they've turned away cruise ships which have visited the islands and other unfriendly acts,  they insist they have no intention of resorting to force - it's not surprising this is a political concern. The British position is based upon supporting the right of self-determination of the Falkland Islanders; if they decided they no longer wished to be associated with the UK, the UK government would support them in that.

poliphobic
poliphobic

@DeweySayenoff @alan74 

At least be honest with yourself. You are leaving Afghanistan , like others before you , because you have realised that you can never win and that it's all so pointless and too costly in lives and money to continue.

BTW - I do believe you did invade that sovereign country and thus did start a war.


alan74
alan74

I don't remember you being invited into Iraq/Afghanistan? How many wars have you ended? The Falklands war was the only war I have supported since the second world war as people were actually liberated. Uk soldiers have died supporting the USA in their pointless wars. No country is above nationalistic pride and I agree should be avoided. Either you agree to self determination or you don't. Even the USA Monroe document excluded the Falklands as there was no indiginous people - only the residents there now can be classed as indiginous

RufusTrotman
RufusTrotman

For some reason I can't insert the entire text of the document with the big heading "INSTRUMENT OF SURRENDER" that brought the Falklands conflict to a close, but needless to say it's not the heading you'd associate with a cease-fire.

RufusTrotman
RufusTrotman

Remind me, how far south of the Colorado River did Argentina exist in 1833? And what happened to the Patagonians who lived there?

If the UK peacefully "usurped" Argentina in the Falkland Islands (and that's a big if) then what was the Conquest of the Desert (read ethnic cleansing of the inhabitants of what is now the southern half of Argentina) decades later?