Sabre rattling abounds on a weekly basis from the delectable El Presidente in Buenos Aires. But why now and should we worry?
The preposterous Argentinian claims are frankly risible. Britain, France and Spain all landed on the islands at varying times in the 17-19th centuries. The only people to ever inhabit them have been Brits, and from long before modern Argentina was even founded. No Argentinian seemed to give a toss about the Falklands until the second half of the 20th century. The population of around 2500 are almost exclusively British. If you believe in the principle of self-determination - it’s all there in Chapter 1 Article 1 of the UN Charter - then the Argies have no viable claim, despite their 'tortuous logic’.
The 1982 Falkland’s War is widely believed to have been an attempt by the then Argentinian military junta to divert popular national attention away from the dire situation the country was in at that time. When they lost, it did for them.
Now in 2012, the situation is very different but very similar at the same time. The Argentinian economy is in an even worse state. The country is in the toilet. So far, so similar. However, the
Argentinian army is emasculated, the navy almost non-existent and the air force reduced to a shadow of its former self. The military is technologically still living in the 1980s. Frankly, the flight of RAF Typhoons at Mount Pleasant, the Type 45 destroyer, HMS Dauntless, now stationed off the islands and the odd submarine would be able to sort them out in an afternoon.
Since 2007, oil exploration has been taking place in The Falklands. Funny coincidence. That same year, the Argies started making noises. And in 2010, exploratory drilling began. Then more finds in 2011. Another funny coincidence. The Argentinian Government upped their campaign that same year.
It’s so transparent; a political diversion and a desire for some of the spoils.
Afternote: And this today, which amounts to a naked attempt to try and establish an air link under the direct control of Argentina for later leverage. So childishly obvious. Playground politics.