Falklands War Archaeology Controversy

11 Dec

In a report today, Scotland on Sunday reveals controversial plans by a TV archaeologist to excavate the battlefields of the Falklands War only 30 years after its end.

Dr. Tony Pollard of Glasgow University is preparing the project and hopes to invite a number of Argentine academics along to assist him. The presenter of the BBC series, Two Men In A Trench, believes the war is in danger of being forgotten and insists his expedition would be a fitting way to mark the 30th anniversary of the islands’ liberation.

Pollard said: “I believe the Falklands have the potential to be an important laboratory for the practice of battlefield archaeology. It was fought in the late 20th century, but with mid 20th century technology and will possibly be the last conventional war that the British army will ever fight. If done properly, a project there could tell us a whole lot about how the archaeological record compares with the many accounts we have.”

Controversially Pollard hopes to invite a team of Argentinian archaeologists to take part in the televised venture. Battle sites to be explored include Mount Tumbledown, Mount Harriet and Goose Green.

The South Atlantic Medal Association 1982, Veterans’ organisation is opposed to the project.

Chairman Mike Bowles said: “I do not believe that it would be appropriate to excavate Falklands Conflict battlefields so comparatively soon after the event and particularly not in 2012, the 30th anniversary year, when many veterans and some next of kin of those who died will be going back to the islands to remember and to pay respects to fallen colleagues and family members.”

The project would have to be approved by the Falkland Islands Government who remain sensitive to visits by Argentines. Relations between the Islanders and Argentina are at a new low following  recent moves by Argentina’s President, Cristina Fernandez, to blockade the islands and obstruct the fledgling oil industry there.




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