One way or another Britain spends over £60 million on the defence of the Falkland Islands. Money well spent defending the sort of principles that Britain is famous for, and, at the same time, utilizing a training ground that is not only unique, but unavailable in Britain. Were else is it safe to test fire a missile or two? In Britain the neighbours would complain. But then the neighbours do tend to complain down in the South Atlantic too.
Hardly unreasonable, in the light of these constrained times, that members of the Commons Defence Committee should embark on the long trip in a military aircraft to check out where the money goes. Pure coincidence that they get to the Falklands just before the 30th anniversary of the 1982 invasion of this British Overseas Territory by Argentina. Honest !
Needless to say, Argentina doesn’t see it that way.
Another provocation, they say, to be added to the training of Prince William, in a uniform, and the deployment of HMS Dauntless, the Royal Navy’s newest Type 45 destroyer. Let’s not mention the nuclear submarine. No, let’s not.
” The UK has rejected Argentina’s calls for talks on the islands’ sovereignty. The UK has transformed the Malvinas into the cornerstone of a system of military bases thousands of kilometres from London to control the South Atlantic, inter-oceanic routes, and the approaches to Antarctica,” said a Foreign Ministry spokesman today.
The Falkland Islands archipelago has been claimed by Britain since 1766, and occupied continuously since 1833. Argentina’s attempts to take the islands with a military force in 1832 and 1982 weren’t successful, and their armed forces were not around long enough on either occassion to count. So Argentina’s Foreign Ministry is correct in at least one respect, the UK has indeed rejected Argentina’s calls for talks over the Island’s sovereignty.
Been ignoring them since 1833 in fact.