Tuesday, 20 March 2012

Thanks, Sir Nicholas Ridley, for the Falklands War


Following on from the carrier blogpost, this is a great, fair, article about the Falklands including detail I didn't know, such as the Argentinians built Stanley airport...

I also didn't know, but am hardly surprised to find, that the spark for the conflict in the 80s can be traced to infamous Thatcher goon Nicholas Ridley, generally associated with the term NIMBY  (among many other classics which belong only  in the imagination of Daily Mail readers)

from the article above

That November, Margaret Thatcher sent a Foreign Office minister, Nicholas Ridley, to the Falklands to sell the deal.

Falklanders have long memories, especially for perceived betrayals, but Ridley's visit is remembered with particular bitterness. Ridley was a self-confident, not particulary empathetic minister, the kind of Whitehall figure some older Falklanders do mocking impressions of to this day.

Fowler attended a public meeting with him in Stanley: "It was fairly late in the evening. He was being heckled. He got cross. And he said, 'If you continue with this intransigence [against leaseback], on your own heads be it. We will not be sending a gunboat.' "

Less than 18 months later, Argentina invaded. For this reason, the Thatcher government is less fondly recalled in the Falklands than British conventional wisdom would have you expect. "It was her mismanagement of the situation that caused the invasion," says Mike Summers, one of the islands' eight elected politicians. In Stanley, there is a street called Thatcher Drive, but it is short; H Jones Road is longer.

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