Just after midnight of June 14th, 1982, the Commander-in-Chief (Fleet) sent a message to London addressed to the British Prime Minister, Margaret Thatcher; ““Major General Menendez surrendered to me all the Argentine Armed Forces in East and West Falkland, together with their impedimenta. Arrangements are in hand to assemble the men for return to Argentina, to gather in their arms and equipment, and to mark and make safe their ammunition.
“The Falkland Islands are once more under the Government desired by their inhabitants.God Save the Queen.”
After a 74 day long war following the invasion of the Falkland Islands in April, the British Task Force, against many expectations, had defeated a larger army and recovered the South Atlantic archipelago. Argentina was humiliated, and nearly 1000 young men had lost their lives.
Now, in this the 30th year since the Falklands War, it would seem that the 14th of June would be the moment for remembrance and commemoration.
Instead, the sub-sub-Committee of the United Nations known as the Special Committee for Decolonisation (C24) has chosen this day to listen, yet again, to Argentina’s spurious claims to the British Islands. Every year this biased Committee, made up with an imbalance of Latin American countries, sits and listens to Argentina, and ignores the one group that it should be listening to, the Islanders themselves. The people of a non-self governing territory which this discredited Committee has a duty to support.
The British Government does not officially attend these annual propaganda sessions, although the Falkland Islands’ Government does. This British Government has argued that the C24 is an irrelevant and costly organisation that has not achieved anything in the last 20 years.
Its insensitivity in choosing a day of remembrance to give Argentina its annual UN soap-box suggests that the Government of David Cameron is right. Time the C24 was closed down.