Two more steps in the Long March

The US may get a front row seat to a real world lesson on having a capable Navy that is about to be taught to our former friend and still ally the UK. By way of background: Inexpensive, abundant energy is key to building a successful economy. Spaniards have endured an extremely bad economy for many years. Spain, under Franco, was fascist, and did not thrive. On the other side of the ocean, Argentina thrived, fell, then turned to fascism to fuel its economy. Last year Argentina, sparked seized (“nationalized”) the fuel company YPF, controlled by Spain’s Repsol. By May, 2012, Spain struck a conciliatory tone […]

UK Opens Falklands Archives

Maj W sent this in: “Falkland War Files Released.” Falklands Invasion ‘Surprised’ Thatcher — BBC The 1982 invasion of the Falkland Islands by Argentina caught Margaret Thatcher by surprise, newly released government papers have shown. The then-prime minister only saw it was likely after getting “raw intelligence” two days before the Argentines landed. Papers released under the 30-year rule show Mrs Thatcher was acutely worried about retaking the islands. One historian said the documents were among the “most powerful material” declassified in the last three decades. I look forward to sifting through pages, Thanks, Maj W!

A New Fight Brewing in the South Atlantic?

By way of a link at MMM, Red State brought this to our attention: Holy shit! — “Argentina to blockade Falkland waters in dispute over oil rights.” “Argentina has declared that it is taking control over all shipping between its coast and the Falklands, in effect awarding itself the power to blockade the disputed islands. “According to a decree issued by President Kirchner last night, all ships sailing through the waters claimed by Argentina must hold a permit. The measure seems likely to deepen a row over conflicting claims to oil beds lying inside the Falkland Islands’ territorial waters. “Argentina […]

The Battle to Recapture South Georgia

Within a week of the Argentine invasion of the Falkland Islands on 2 April 1982, a naval task force had been assembled and dispatched from Great Britain. It contained not only the major combatants of the Royal Navy– two carriers, plus destroyers, frigates and three submarines– but the all-important amphibious assault ships without which a landing was unthinkable. Also included were “STUFT,” Ships Taken Up Front Trade; these were civilian container ships, North Sea ferries and even SS Canberra, a luxury liner, all hastily modified to accept men and material. The last transported a large part of the landing force, […]

The Defense of South Georgia

In light of recent events in the Northern Arabian Gulf, I thought it might be appropriate to call your attention to another occasion where a hostile Navy decided to “bow up” on the Royal Marines, 25 years ago today. Things went a bit differently for the Argies, however. Near the Falkland Islands was another island, known as South Georgia, that was uninhabited except for a team of scientists from the British Antarctic Survey, stationed at Grytviken. However, the Argentines had decided to make a point on South Georgia. Their point would not be as well-taken as the one made by […]

Falklands War; Recommended Reading

I have a short reading list below, four book that I think are not only well written and authoritative, but when read as a set paint a reasonably complete picture of the whole conflict, from the strategic to the tactical. But before I list them, let me address one other issue. The Royal Navy and Royal Marines, with whom we have stood and fought side by side for many years now, are taking it on the chin over the mess with Iran. Lots of bloggers have pointed out that they should have fought it out (correct), that Nelson is probably […]