the day we went to war

Posted: June 18, 2012 in This is the Voice of Lefty Reason

Thirty years since the Falklands War with Argentina; hundreds of young Britons and Argentines lost their lives over the sovereignty of a couple of wind-lashed islands over 8000 miles from the shores of this country. Thatcher’s jingoistic rabble-rousing sent the troops down south and the flag waving, patriotic send off encouraged us all to feel like a bit of a jolly was to be enjoyed. It turned out far from a jolly for the bombed, maimed, drowned, burned and killed. The Argies were largely conscripts with little formal training and very poor equipment as the might of the British Special Forces bore down on them in their foxholes; the sight of the bedraggled young South Americans being herded up was a defining image. I bet the youths on both sides couldn’t have found the islands on a world map before their “masters” ordered them to go and fight. The protagonists sat at home in London and Buenas Aries and bashed out media sound-bites about the conflict; very easy to stir it up when safe and sound at home. Today the issue still hasn’t gone away and politically savvy Argentinians are attempting to whip up the jingoistic stupidity that results in hideous, pointless deaths miles from home. At least this time Thatch isn’t around looking for ways to increase her popularity. It is said that the result of the two wars of the eighties cemented Thatch’s place for the next decade. The second war of the eighties, you ask? 1984; The miners strike, a story for another day.

  1. Karen says:

    Sadly, my husband’s friend who was in the navy didn’t come back from this war. At 20 years old he died – not in battle – but because of an accident onboard ship the day after the war had ended. Some equipment broke loose, crushed him against the side of the ship and he died of his injuries. The patriotic flag waving is one thing, but the reality for some families is a completely different story. Very sad.

    • strainsview says:

      huge waste – my argument is not, and never will be, with those who have to go and do the “dirty work”; it is, and always will be, with those who take glib decisions without having to go themselves.

  2. Barney says:

    Deffo food for thought, it won’t come too another war again I’m sure the world has moved on thank God. Just a quick one to remember Junior Missile Man Stewart aged 17 killed in action on HMS Argonout during the Falklands war, not old enough to vote, but old enough to die for his country.

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