Falkland Islanders Should Vote ‘no’ in Referendum on British Sovreignty

This is a guest post by Marxist Lennonist

Voters in this week’s Falkland Islands sovreignty referendum should vote No to maintaining the diplomatically untenable, colonial and actually undignified status quo. Even if there was no territorial dispute, to be a polity separate from the United Kingdom, yet having its defence and foreign policy set by Whitehall, would be absurdly anachronistic, anomalous and, yes, colonialist – even if reaffirmed in a referendum. In the actual situation, in which this village sized polity stands in stark contention with the entire continent of South America in which it is situated, Cameron’s high handed refusal to engage with Argentina’s demand for peaceful talks, which this referendum is meant to rubberstamp, becomes increasingly absurd.

A No vote would not mean immediate Argentine annexation, and certainly wouldn’t mean the return of Galtieri’s brutal rule. How could it – now that the Galtieri junta have not only lost power but have been imprisoned for their many crimes on the initiative of Argentina’s current progressive, leftist, pro-human rights government. This same democratic government has ruled out war and aggression in pursuit of the Argentine claim to the Islands.

Instead it is demanding talks on the sovreignty issue, out of which, if entered into in good faith by all parties, any number of outcomes could conceivably emerge. None would involve denying the human rights of the Islanders, driving you from your homes or forcing you to forswear your British heritage, as nobody serious and certainly not the Argentine government are demanding that. But the constitutional status quo is not necessary for those legitimate rights to be protected; and the massively expensive garrison David Cameron continues to maintain is not only a burden that Britain as a whole can scarce afford in a time of austerity but a perverse and utterly unnecessary means of relating to the rest of the continent, while by sending a nuclear vessel, Britain has violated the long-standing Latin American status as a nuclear-arms-free region under the Tlatelolco Treaty.

For a settlement of 3,000 people to maintain a hostile relationship with the rest of its continent backed up by such overweening military hardware, and for oil to be prospected for in contested waters in the interests of British business, will not suddenly become acceptable to South America, including the rising world power Brazil, and the wider ex-colonial world, just because of a Yes vote in the referendum. The status quo would endure a little longer, but nothing else would change either, including the hostile relationship with the Islanders neighbours. The whole exercise will be dismissed as a stunt – all the more so given that even as the vote was called Falklands’ politicians said they already knew the result!

3,000 people – every man, woman and child of the Falklands population – is just a third of George Galloway and the RESPECT Party’s parliamentary majority over the nearest runner-up in Bradford West, a single constituency out of 650 in Britain. To expect that a settlement this small, smaller than the average English village, has the right to indefinitely direct such military resources as are currently garrisoned in the South Atlantic, when there is no threat to their basic human rights and a peaceful democratic government in Argentina asking only for talks as the alternative to this militarisation, is to make an unwise bet on the indefinite continuance of a policy of post-imperial hubris.

In fact, it would be in Islanders’ own real interests to vote No, to reject an outdated status quo and the militarisation that goes into sustaining it, and instead begin to bring the long running dispute to a beneficial conclusion both for the Islanders and the people of mainland South America.

And perhaps it wouldn’t be such a bad idea to associate more closely with the mainland – while Europe is mired in failed, brutal austerity and continuing recession, and Britain’s position as a military power continues to decline, Latin America has become the most hopeful, happening region in the world, where huge progress is being made to deepen democracy and lift millions upon millions out of poverty, and a more humane world is being proven to be possible. The tidal wave of grief, across national borders and indeed beyond the region all over the world, for the tragic passing this week of the leading figure in this process, Hugo Chavez, is powerful proof of that. Argentina itself has become a major part of this process; President Cristina Fernandez and her government have taken an international lead against the crooked bankers that continue to cause such chaos and misery around the world, including in Britain, and have recently won several major battles with the vulture funds of international finance. And alongside this rejection of financial criminality and striving for social uplift, the deepening of human rights and minority rights is central to the programmes of left governments both in Argentina and the left across the continent.

Therefore is nothing to lose or to fear in rejecting a status quo that will be untenable in the long run in any case, and everything to gain in starting a new and friendlier relationship with the up and coming neighbourhood of which the Islands are fortunate to be part. Vote No in the referendum to reject militarisation and reach out to a region at the forefront of building a better world for humanity.

188 comments on “Falkland Islanders Should Vote ‘no’ in Referendum on British Sovreignty

  1. AndyS. on said:

    It is at least progress that the right of the Kelpers to self-determination is recognised rather than Argentine imperialism attempting to assert itself by another illegal invasion.

  2. Manzil on said:

    A good article, totally agree.

    If you can’t even muster enough of a community to even provide further education facilities, and send your children half way around the world to boarding schools, you’re evidently not, actually, a community. No one suggests that Antarctic research stations have rights to self-determination requiring the complete subordination of foreign policy. And that’s what they’re akin to – appendages of the UK.

    Argentina would, I’m sure, negotiate on the basis of respecting the islanders’ autonomy. Those who didn’t want to stay could always come to Britain. Either would be a workable solution – the only loss would be to Britain’s resource claims in the South Atlantic and its post-imperial prestige.

  3. Marxist Lennonist on said:

    #1 Read the article, its not a concession to the Cameron line on “self determination” and in fact gives reasons for predicting that if this referendum turns out to be the status quo stunt its planned to be that won’t be recognised or solve anything long term. Thats why a “No” vote would be far preferable and open up the possibility of any number of mutually beneficial solutions. Btw you’re not really suggesting the Cristina’s calling for talks, and opposing the sending of the nuclear sub, is “agressive imperialism”, are you…

    #2 Very well put Manzil.

  4. Why would any government want to negotiate sovereignty with another country like Argentina that as written into it’s constitution that all negotiations must lead to full Argentine sovereignty???
    British sovereignty is what the Islanders want FOR NOW so no negotiations are needed.
    Argentina would do well to deal with Rampant Inflation,paying up bond holders who are suing Kirchner in the American courts releasing accurate financial information instead of lieing to world bodies (recently censured by IMF)
    Who the hell would want to be ruled by this lot.

  5. These Argentines might be taken a little more seriously if there names were not KIRCHNER,TIMERMAN,KOHEN.
    What we have here are a people no different to the Islanders,Argentinians are SETTLERS from Europe via Spanish Pirates the difference being Argentinians have great difficulty accepting there history The Islanders do not

  6. Marxist Lennonist on said:

    Andy,

    “Argentina would do well to deal with…paying up bond holders who are suing Kirchner in the American…recently censured by IMF”

    A funny argument for a socialist blog

    “Who the hell would want to be ruled by this lot”

    Someone who didn’t trust the IMF and its austerity agenda perhaps?

  7. Rockhopper on said:

    Actually, the obvious solution would be for tha Fakland Islands to annex Argentina. Argentina would have the unity Argentines are said to want and would be much better governed as well.

  8. Iestyn ap Robert on said:

    British SSBN’s do not need to leave the north Atlantic to be effective along the length of Argentina. They need go no further south than the Canary Islands to threaten Buenos Aires itself, so how you can claim that the UK has vilated the Tlatelolco Treaty is a mystery. You have no evidence of this.

    As for the Falkland Islanders vote. That is a matter for them. They already have strong and longstanding links with the mainland, with Chile and Uruguay. The only problem is Argentina. I fail to see how voting “no” will make Argentina’s unfounded claim go away. The Falkland Islanders have reached out to Argentina countless times, but are ignored, because Argentina refuses to accept their existence.

  9. Andy: Argentina would do well to deal with Rampant Inflation,paying up bond holders who are suing Kirchner in the American courts releasing accurate financial information instead of lieing to world bodies (recently censured by IMF)

    Incidently, how would the Falklands Islands economy fare without the support of Britain?

    Andy: self determination is the answer

    Ok, let us withdraw British troops, British economic support, British administration, and let the islanders stand on their own two feet.

  10. Martin woodhead on said:

    Been there talked to any islanders have you?
    I doubt you have. The garrison is a company of troops 4 fast jets a search and rescue helicopters and a patrol ship. Hardly a vast military force when compared to th threat.

    Argentina’s minister of Defence called on the UK “to sit and dialogue” over the Falklands/Malvinas sovereignty and warned that the British military presence in the South Atlantic “is the only element that upholds the usurpation of that part of our national territory”. mercopress.

    Basiclly argentina can do one socailists supporting a facist cause

  11. Iestyn ap Robert:
    British SSBN’s do not need to leave the north Atlantic to be effective along the length of Argentina. They need go no further south than the Canary Islands to threaten Buenos Aires itself, so how you can claim that the UK has vilated the Tlatelolco Treaty is a mystery. You have no evidence of this.

    In fairness, if British SSBNs wanted to threaten Buenos Aires they wouldn’t have to go as far as the Canary Islands (from there they could hit anywhere in Argentina). Buenos Aires is within range of the one SSBN with a known position, HMS Vengeance, which is docked in Devonport for a refit.

    Given the traditional complete lack of any evidence that accompanied the allegation (they didn’t even recycle Humourous Hector’s powerpoint presentation of the wrong type of submarine, aircraft from the wrong airforce and sinister monitoring stations (which actually looked very much like Cable and Wireless phone masts) this year), I think it could be safely ignored…

  12. Manzil on said:

    Andy:

    The Islands are neither Britains to give nor Argentinas to take,self determination is the answer

    That’s a slogan, not a solution.

    The islands aren’t self-sufficient. They are utterly dependent on (British) outside support – economic, administrative, military etc. As I mentioned, they can’t even school their children. Before 1982, the islanders all popped to Argentina to make use of their education and health care!

    As regards self-determination, there is no threat that they would not be able to run their own affairs and enjoy a great degree of autonomy within the context of Argentinian sovereignty.

    But self-determination does not extend to committing Britain in perpetuity to a neo-colonial relationship eight thousand miles away in the South Atlantic – one that is obviously motivated by strategic and resource interests completely peripheral to the supposed rights of the islands.

  13. Martin woodhead on said:

    Actually economically and administration wise they run themselves. defence wise they would be if Argentina did continue to make threats.
    The Falkland islanders are happy the UK is happy to support them.
    The staggering cost is 0.2%of the defence budget for that we can destroy the entire argentinan air force and navy and they know it.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Netherlands_Antilles
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/French_Guiana#Economy

    Are other remains of empire and get left alone only argentina wants to revisit the 19th century land grab era. they need to grow up and sort out Argentina a country which has been mismanaged for decades.

  14. Manzil on said:

    Martin woodhead: Actually economically and administration wise they run themselves. defence wise they would be if Argentina did continue to make threats.

    But Argentina is not happy with the situation. Which means that the £46 million a year of British military expenditure can’t simply be externalised from the equation. Invoking rights to self-determination without the ability to realise it is so much meaningless rhetoric.

    Of course, £46 million is a drop in the ocean, compared to the estimated 7 billion barrels-worth of oil and gas currently being developed. But I’m sure that has nothing to do with UK intransigence.

    We do, after all, respect the rights of small islands to absolute self-determination regardless of our own interests – everywhere from the Falkland islands to the Chagos archipelago.

    Oh, wait.

    What would the reality of Argentinian sovereignty mean? Does it mean the Falklands wouldn’t be able to run their own affairs (which would be self-financing without the military presence)? Would they have to speak Spanish? Would they lose their right to British citizenship?

    Of course not. The only loss would be Britain’s – to its economic and strategic claims in the South Atlantic, and its impression of itself as an ongoing, post-imperial ‘world power’.

  15. Marxist Lennonist:
    Andy,

    “Argentina would do well to deal with…paying up bond holders who are suing Kirchner in the American…recently censured by IMF”

    A funny argument for a socialist blog

    “Who the hell would want to be ruled by this lot”

    Someone who didn’t trust the IMF and its austerity agenda perhaps?

    Donb’t be a joke take a look at Argentina and you tell me would you want to live under that womans rule if so British Airways fly daily to B.A to a country where 25% of the population survive on $7 per day.

  16. Manzil on said:

    Andy: Who the hell would want to be ruled by this lot.

    Andy: Argentinians are SETTLERS from Europe via Spanish Pirates

    Iestyn ap Robert: British SSBN’s do not need to leave the north Atlantic to be effective along the length of Argentina.

    Martin woodhead: Basiclly argentina can do one socailists supporting a facist cause

    Martin woodhead: we can destroy the entire argentinan air force and navy and they know it.

    Martin woodhead: they need to grow up and sort out Argentina a country which has been mismanaged for decades.

    Andy: would you want to live under that womans rule

    Why the sudden proliferation of gung-ho vicarious boasting about Britain’s big, hard, virile… military capability, alongside the petty, essentialist, defamatory comments about Argentina?

    Does every discussion about the Falklands have to be directed by our reptilian brain-stem?

  17. Andy Newman: Incidently, how would the Falklands Islands economy fare without the support of Britain?

    Ok, let us withdraw British troops, British economic support, British administration, and let the islanders stand on their own two feet.

    They are self governing there economy runs at a surplus Britain looks after defence and foreign affairs

  18. Manzil,

    And your answer for Argentine sovereignty is???? location perhaps or just because Argentina is a country that as tantrums and believes it should get something every time it cries for it a little like a child would

  19. Manzil,

    What don’t you get in that The Islanders DO NOT want Argentine sovereignty something that was taken of the table where negotiations are concerned with there illegal invasion in 1982.
    Perhaps you could tell us all how we awarded the Germans similarly after World War2??

  20. Martin woodhead: The Falkland islanders are happy the UK is happy to support them.

    Well we are engaged here in a debate about British “self-determination” of whether we want to go on subsiding and supporting the falkland islands.

    If the argument is about falklands “sef-determination” why the assumption that Britain should commit a single penny or a single soldier to that cause?

  21. Andy: What don’t you get in that The Islanders DO NOT want Argentine sovereignty something that was taken of the table where negotiations are concerned with there illegal invasion in 1982.
    Perhaps you could tell us all how we awarded the Germans similarly after World War2??

    In the unlikely event that you want an answer to your bellicose thuundering, consider the reasonable analogous case of the AAland islands, where the wishes of the islanders were taken into consdieration, but not allowed to prevent a reasonable and conflict avoiding resolution between sweden and finland.

    http://untreaty.un.org/ola/media/info_from_lc/POB%20Aalands%20Islands%20Exhibition%20opening.pdf

  22. Manzil on said:

    Andy, it is evidently going to be difficult to discuss this with you.

    In three comments you have referred to Argentina having “tantrums… like a child”, invoked the Nazis, and called me “pro-Argentine” like it was some terrible curse.

    I respect the 1960 UN resolution on colonial independence, which affirmed, “Any attempt aimed at the partial or total disruption of the national unity and the territorial integrity of a country is incompatible with the purposes and principles of the Charter of the UN”, regardless of the right to self-determination. Unless you honestly think the Falklands are a constituent part of British nation.

    The legitimate rights of the islanders to manage their own affairs are entirely compatible with Argentinian sovereignty or with shared sovereignty. My right to freely participate in cultural and political life does not guarantee membership of a particular state through which to exercise that life.

    There is a difference between national rights to self-determination and the islanders’ situation – ie. the former is actually independently sustainable, whereas the latter is dependent on external support and therefore cannot be dealt with in isolation from that support. And the islanders’ right to self-determination does not extent the islanders a right to determine British policy.

  23. Martin woodhead: Been there talked to any islanders have you?

    no, and I don’t give a toss what they think.

    Interestingly I have met a lot of St Helenans, but no Falklanders, the difference is that St Helena does not have the same economic support as the Falklands, and so its people have to come to the Uk to work.

  24. Andy Newman: Well we are engaged here in a debate about British “self-determination” of whether we want to go on subsiding and supporting the Falkland islands.

    If the argument is about Falklands “sef-determination” why the assumption that Britain should commit a single penny or a single soldier to that cause?

    The UK only supports them with defence and foreign affairs The Islanders have made it quite clear that when the oil flows they will be more than happy to pay for defence them self,we would have no fewer aircraft or no fewer solders if the army and there equipment was not based on the Islands they would simply be based elsewhere

  25. Martin woodhead: The garrison is a company of troops 4 fast jets a search and rescue helicopters and a patrol ship. Hardly a vast military force when compared to th threat.

    rather a lot to defend 1600 adults.

    Andy: They are self governing there economy runs at a surplus

    So a defence spend of £46 million has no impact on the sustainability of the Falkland economy?

    You seem to be unware of the way government subventions can be obscured.

  26. Manzil on said:

    Andy: The UK only supports them with defence and foreign affairs The Islanders have made it quite clear that when the oil flows they will be more than happy to pay for defence them self,we would have no fewer aircraft or no fewer solders if the army and there equipment was not based on the Islands they would simply be based elsewhere

    How generous of them. So it’s their oil, is it?

    To do with as they please, and buy themselves a national existence? Like a South Atlantic emirate.

    Andy Newman: You seem to be unware of the way government subventions can be obscured.

    Especially when you consider that the island government is the largest single employer.

  27. Andy: The Islanders have made it quite clear that when the oil flows they will be more than happy to pay for defence

    I wasn’t aware that the British Army, RAF and Royal Navy were up for hire by anyone perpared to pay for their use.

    Deployment of the British Arned forces is a question for Britain to decide, based upon Britain’s own perception of its national interest.

    If the Falkland Islanders wnat a democratic say in british foreign policy, they shoud come and live in britain.

  28. Manzil,

    Manzil,

    As I said I respect your PRO Argentine views and what looks like your anti Conservative stance,lets not forget a Labour government would have the same policies also there are MANY Argentines that do not support The Kirchner regime but unfortunately they are classed as traitors and many have had there life threatened so once again yes Argentines are no better or different than The Falkland Islanders They are an IN PLANTED people from Europe by way of Spanish pirates,I did not invoke NAZIS I rightly pointed out we did not award The Germans for creating a war as should The Argentines not be for the illegal 1982 invasion where The united nations security council instructed them to leave immediately which they did not.
    Banki Moon in November clearly stated that The United Kingdom WAS NOT in breach of any major UN resolutions unlike The Argentine government who lies and cheats there way through life recently being censured by The IMF for providing false information a country that does not honour it’s debts a country that is gagging the freedom of speech slowly but surely it’d OK saying you would be happy with someone like Kirchner in No.10 try selling that to The British public I think they would crucify you.

  29. Andy Newman: I wasn’t aware that the British Army, RAF and Royal Navy were up for hire by anyone perpared to pay for their use.

    Deployment of the British Arned forces is a question for Britain to decide, based upon Britain’s own perception of its national interest.

    If the Falkland Islanders wnat a democratic say in british foreign policy, they shoud come and live in britain.

    So you answered your own question our elected governmant see fit to have a garrison on The Falkland Islands end of story

  30. Martin woodhead: Actually economically and administration wise they run themselves.

    Yet the Isles of Scilly, which have a similar sized population and are only 40 miles from Cornwall has a very precarious economy, is dependent upon many administrative and govenment function being performed in Cornwall and London, and receives considerable implicit subsidy.

  31. Manzil,

    The oil is located in Falkland Island waters just like North sea oil was located in The north Sea or are you suggesting Argentine Territorial waters should just be extended throughout The south Atlantic just to please them????

  32. Andy: our elected governmant see fit to have a garrison on The Falkland Islands

    yes, and we are debating whther or not the British government shoudl change their mind, which would be a question of the British government, regardless of the wishes of the Falkland Islanders.

    Andy: surely it’d OK saying you would be happy with someone like Kirchner in No.10 try selling that to The British public I think they would crucify you.

    You clearly have a very luird imagination, does you mum know you are on the Interent when you should be doing your homework.

  33. Andy Newman: yes, and we are debating whther or not the British government shoudl change their mind, which would be a question of the British government, regardless of the wishes of the Falkland Islanders.

    You clearly have a very luird imagination, does you mum know you are on the Interent when you should be doing your homework.

    LOL thank’s for the insults,what does that say about the person you are? Did I insult or offend you?

  34. Manzil on said:

    #31. I don’t think your rabid talk about the dastardly Kirchner and Spanish pirates (rather irrelevant to the national rights of the Argentinian people) really merits a response, other than to ask why you mention the Conservatives. I assure you, Labour’s own record of imperialist hubris offends me no less.

    Andy:

    The oil is located in Falkland Island waters just like North sea oil was located in The north Sea or are you suggesting Argentine Territorial waters should just be extended throughout The south Atlantic just to please them????

    Don’t be stupid. The issue is precisely whether “Falkland Island waters” is a legitimate concept.

    Specifically, whether it is appropriate for the islanders to assert their complete ownership (remember we’re not talking about self-determination of people now, but ownership of resources) over the oil and gas, against the wishes of the Argentinian people, in order (as you have suggested!) to fund the military defence of their neo-colony, against the wishes of the Argentinian people.

    Do you see why that might be somewhat controversial?

  35. Manzil,

    But you have not answered the question which is your support for Argentine sovereignty what is your argument and proof? The Falkland Islands are not in Argentine Territorial waters they are in Falklands Island waters located 1000 miles from Buenes Aries and 400 miles of The Argentine coast.
    Can I also suggest you listen to the rhetoric from Argentines against The British once again they see them self as something different instead of what they really are European immigrants planted by Spanish Pirates just like they say The Falkland Islanders are. So please explain why The Islanders must live there life for or against the wishes of The Argentine people,Argentina have in there constitution that they, Argentina have full sovereignty rights over The Falkland Islands so why would anyone want to sit and negotiate with a country that claims sovereignty when they do not have it or should have it?? So Argentina is saying we will negotiate but there is a pre determined outcome which is Argentine sovereignty take a look at Argentine claims to land belonging to Chile and Uruguay you could say they have history for claiming others land.

  36. ARGENTINA

    Cristina Kirchner / Official
    •Even before she was elected president of Argentina, Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner carried the haze of corruption. In the most famous case, an emissary from Hugo Chavez, the president of Venezuela, was discovered at the Buenos Aires airport carrying a briefcase stuffed with $800,000 in cash, destined, he later told the FBI, to support Kirchner’s presidential bid. Kirchner denied the allegation. Within Argentina, many question the huge fortune Kirchner and her late husband Nestor amassed since taking public office. Her declared personal wealth stands at $13.8 million, up from $500,000 when the couple first entered national politics. Kirchner cites income from real estate and hotels the couple had purchased to explain the 2,600 percent return on the couple’s investment purse. Corruption watchers complain that her government has neutered government oversight, giving auditing posts to cronies compromised by conflicts of interest. The result: corruption cases take an average of 14 years to work through the system, according to the non-profit Center for the Study and Prevention of Economic Crimes, and only 15 in 750 cases have led to convictions.

    YOUR WELCOME TO HER-Hugos best friend by the way and his fortune since being in power is estimated at $2 billion.

  37. Despite undeniable evidence this is not about any verification of claim. It is about (amongst other issues) the principle of the islanders identity.

    The British have started, and ended, wars over ‘nothing more’ than principles in the past.

    A publicly announced declaration of the populations wishes is far preferred to the alternatives being pushed by some of the more outspoken members of the countries involved.

  38. wS,

    But the Islands issue is only brought up by Argentina when there are internal problems,the actions of late by Argentina have been deplorable The united Kingdom have been described even by Argentine press as decent and tolerant allowing The Argentine foreign minister to come to this country to spin lies-would we be afforded the same pleasure to go to Argentina and do the same?of course a strong Peronist government in power so we can expect nothing different
    Perhaps you might like to read what Educated Argentines think on the issue and these same people were threatened with death and branded traitors

    http://en.mercopress.com/2012/02/23/argentine-group-insists-with-falklands-self-determination-and-sharing-natural-resources

  39. Chris on said:

    Andy Newman: I wasn’t aware that the British Army, RAF and Royal Navy were up for hire by anyone perpared to pay for their use.

    Brunei for one

  40. Manzil on said:

    Andy: But you have not answered the question which is your support for Argentine sovereignty what is your argument and proof? The Falkland Islands are not in Argentine Territorial waters they are in Falklands Island waters located 1000 miles from Buenes Aries and 400 miles of The Argentine coast.

    And Britain is 8000 miles away, so if we’re using that as the basis for sovereignty, I think their claim to sovereignty by right of proximity takes precedence.

    The islands have been subject to the colonial claims of European powers for centuries, it’s true. But only one state has a serious natural right to them – Argentina, despite your offensive comments about “Spanish pirates”. The British claim is about as legitimate as France, Spain or Holland’s – the only difference is the continuity of our presence since the expulsion of Argentina’s settlers in 1833.

    Evidently you could make an argument on a technical basis – Argentina’s inheritance of the Spanish claim upon its independence, and Britain’s disappearance from the islands for 50 years. (Britain’s contention that Spain’s rights lapsed with their voluntary departure must surely apply equally to Britain’s withdrawal in 1774.) Making the expulsion of Argentina in 1833 the basis for our claim. Do you think that changing “facts on the ground” afterwards, settling British colonists on the islands, should negate that?

    But that elides the principle issue: the British claim cannot be divorced from the European history of colonialism. The UN accepts it is a colonial, not a national problem.

    It is a question of Argentinian versus British sovereignty; the rights of the islanders are not under threat. The only right they don’t have – to demand citizenship of a particular state, and to hold it captive to their interests on account of that citizenship – is not a right either you or I hold either.

  41. Ken Ridge on said:

    Manzil: The islands aren’t self-sufficient. They are utterly dependent on (British) outside support – economic, administrative, military etc. As I mentioned, they can’t even school their children.

    What utter and complete rubbish, the islands are self sufficient other than military, which of course wouldn’t be needed with out the aggressive Argentina next door. They also have a more than capable school, collage & university in the UK is paid for by FIG.

    When did you last visit the Islands Manzil? I doubt you ever have, typical brainwashed Argentine propaganda.

  42. Manzil on said:

    Ken Ridge: What utter and complete rubbish, the islands are self sufficient other than military, which of course wouldn’t be needed with out the aggressive Argentina next door. They also have a more than capable school, collage & university in the UK is paid for by FIG.

    When did you last visit the Islands Manzil? I doubt you ever have, typical brainwashed Argentine propaganda.

    All these unusual never-before-seen names popping up! Did this article get listed on some Falklanders’ discussion forum or something?

    Well as we’ve established, the military expenditure does exist, whatever your idealised wishes, and without it the islanders’ claims to self-determination are so much bunkum. That funding is greater than the total revenue of the Falkland islands government. So let’s keep that in perspective when we’re talking about what the islands ‘pay’ for. What claim do you believe the islanders have on Britain’s largesse, when their human rights are under no threat from Argentinian sovereignty?

    The question concerning education, as when Andy mentioned the islanders’ willingness to pay for military defence with Argentina’s oil, is why they cannot maintain these services themselves? Because they are not a serious community. They are 3,000 people. Only about two-thirds of which are working-age adults. That’s the size of my local government ward. Do we get to choose our state? Can I pick Sweden?

    I wish I could be brainwashed by Argentinian propaganda. Alas I don’t speak Spanish. My info mainly comes from the BBC and the Guardian, but I didn’t know they were particularly under the thumb of Kirchner’s Spanish pirates. Shall we list places we’re allowed to talk about, predicated on our travel itinerary? Presumably I can talk about the south of France but not Northern Ireland.

  43. Manzil,

    If Argentina as a case they are within there right to take it to the ICJ which they have refused to do on several occasions where The United Kingdom as shown willing .
    Once again why do you find my comments using the word Pirate offensive?? are you not aware thats how Argentines see The British omce again I ask you why Argentines have difficulty with there history are thery not sons and daughters of European immigrants??? what happened to the native patagonian population??? Argentina lost it’s rights when it illegally invaded in 1982 please find a brieth history thats more to the truth.

    http://en.mercopress.com/2013/01/03/brief-history-of-the-falklands-since-first-references-in-the-16th-century-to-1841

    Also perhaps you should read this article on Argentine history

    http://en.mercopress.com/2013/01/29/are-falkland-islanders-the-mapuches-of-the-south-atlantic

  44. AnthonyR on said:

    Speaks volumes that this article is written by someone who proudly flaunts himself as “Marxist-Leninist” – what did Marxist-Leninism do for humanity aside from murdering millions who dissented with them? And for that matter what has Argentina done for humanity or even for its own people? Not very much – certainly not in recent decades it has gone downhill relentlessly. The country is an atrocious state on every level – financial, physical, and social but I won’t go into the messy details here but let me just say that I have seen much more of the country than all but a few Argentines.

    But what I am wondering here is this – what would Argentina do if it got its hands on the Falklands? The question is rhetorical – its pretty damn obvious what they would do. Very few Argentines would actually want to live there, but in order to “integrate” their beloved “Malvinas” into the country the Arg govt would feel compelled to quickly swamp the English speaking islanders with Spanish-speaking immigrants, and it could only do so by paying a large number (at least 5000) of poor uneducated and unemployed non-English speaking Argentines to outnumber the islanders. Not only that but they would quickly pass legislation – or not, as the case might be, driving on the right-hand side is a cert – but also other discriminatory measures like giving employment priority to Spanish-speakers – all designed to make the islanders feel like 2nd class citizens and all of which would create immediate tension between the 2 communities. The upshot of all this is that, by one means or another, the English-speaking Falklanders will be bullied to leave. In other words “ethnic-cleansing” will be instituted from Day 1 of the Argentine occupation. In this way a peaceful 200 year-old community will be quickly eradicated just so that Argentines can feel “proud” and (in Timerman’s words) “complete”. (Then why does he not demand the western half of Tierra del Fuego, since Argentines have to cross into Chilean territory to get there?).

  45. Manzil,

    The article was listed on Mercopress by Argentines that troll the INTERNET looking for articles to support there cause alittle like there government that prostitutes itself around the world spinning propaganda to support there cause,recently Cristina Kirchner was in Angola and thanked the Angolan people for there support,now can you imagine for one minute Angolans know or care where the Islands are located?? they probably are more concerned where the next meal is coming from.
    To hear the Stuff coming out of Argentina is completely unbelievable and often shocking they have even gone to The United Nations complaing we have Nuclear Submarines down there and when asked for proof they were left looking like the idiots they are,seriously you could not make it up.

  46. AnthonyR on said:

    Manzil: My info mainly comes from the BBC and the Guardian,

    In other words your information comes from left-wing ideologues.

    Both run by left-wing ideologues.

  47. Manzil on said:

    Andy,

    I take offence to your comments about “Spanish pirates” because it’s completely irrelevant. Likewise this stuff about indigenous Argentinians. Britain has a blood-drenched imperialist history but you don’t seem to regard that as affecting its claims to sovereignty. I especially don’t see what Tory MP Matt Parris has to do with this. Your objective appears to blow as much smoke as possible.

    I’ll ask you the same question as “Ken Ridge”, although to be honest I’m just assuming you’re all the same guy: what claim do you believe the islanders have on the permanent support of Britain?

    On the ICJ issue, you may find this interesting:
    http://www.ejiltalk.org/why-the-falklands-dispute-will-probably-never-go-to-court/

  48. Manzil on said:

    AnthonyR: In other words your information comes from left-wing ideologues.

    Both run by left-wing ideologues.

    LOL.

    OK OK, I get it guys. This is a good one. I don’t know how you keep thinking up the new names though.

  49. AnthonyR, someone so blinded by ideology, he didn’t even bother to spot the deliberate mis-spelling of “marxist leninist”, and thus looks like an idiot who can’t take a joke.

  50. AnthonyR on said:

    Manzil:
    AnthonyR,

    What a load of offensive, completely speculative bollocks.

    Touchy-touchy – where’s the offensiveness? I didn’t even get started about the disastrous mess that Argentina is in, and now I won’t because the last thing I want to do is to do is argue with a fool – you’ll bring me down to your level and beat me with experience..!

    Manzil:
    AnthonyR,

    What a load of offensive, completely speculative bollocks.

  51. Manzil on said:

    AnthonyR,

    You mean other than concocting a completely fabricated secret Argentinian plan to ethnically cleanse the Falkland islands? (Those evil Argies – what cards!) Oh, nothing offensive. Nothing at all.

    You pillock.

  52. Manzil on said:

    Andy:
    You could ask the same question why does French Guiana have the support of France.

    Well… no. Because French Guiana is a constituent part of the French state. It sends deputies to the national assembly. It also constitutes a quarter of a million people.

    So, would you like to answer my question? Why exactly should Britain feel obligated to spend £46m to defend this neo-colony whose adult population isn’t much bigger than most high schools?

  53. Choosing to ignore Argentine history of a people of European immigrants that colonised a country and cleansed the local population

    KETTLE CALLING THE POT COMES TO MIND DON’T YOU AGREEReferring to the claim that a civilian Argentine population was expelled from the Falklands in 1833, Parris says, ”It makes the blood boil to hear the current President of Argentina, in her recent letter to David Cameron, describe a pantomime skirmish involving a handful of people (most of whom stayed put anyway and kept their property) on some windswept islands far out into the ocean as having “forcibly stripped” her countrymen of their rightful land; and as being a blatant exercise of 19th Century colonialism.“ The hypocrisy!

    Parris continues by calling Argentina the ”Rhodesia of the New World“ and asks, ”If Britain forcibly stripped Argentina of the Falkland Islands, what does Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner think the nation she leads did on the mainland? What words would she find for the cold-blooded and systematic destruction and total dispossession of Argentina’s original population by the European invaders whose descendants’ votes she now seeks?

    Now Matthew Parris wrote this article but he is also on record before he delved into history calling for negotiations which The Argentine Ambassador to The UK is quite happy to quote-she won’t be happy quoting on the above article will she

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xkEMS7diuDc

    Argentina is the one that confuses history just like they lie and cheat there way through life

    A that can not decide on it’s own inflation figures and continually lies to distort the true figure of between 25% and 30%

    A country that refuses to pay its debts

    A country that is being persuade through American courts for none payment of debts

    A country that tells an American judge they will never accept the ruling of the court

    A country where the president can not use state assets beyond it’s borders for fear of them being in pounded

    A country in the G20 that is actively trying to silence Argentine press

    A country that is trying to politicise there own legal system

    A country who’s leader states she is a trained lawyer without any proof

    A country who’s presidents wealth as grown by $70 since coming to power

    A country in G20 who as introduced price controls on food which can only lead to food shortages and black markets.

    AND THE LIST GOES ON.

  54. AnthonyR on said:

    Argentina says its claim is based on history and geography. The history part is just a convenient distraction – a red-herring. There were several settlements (French and British mainly) on the islands prior and at the time of the claimed Argentine occupation, Argentina didn’t even exist – it only consisted of the area around Buenos Aires, about 1000 miles away. They only occupied the Patagonian mainland in the 1890’s by which time the Falklands were well-established as British territory, in fact the Argentine government acknowledged as much in the 1850’s, although they’ve conveniently forgotten about that now.

    No, the real basis of their claim is “proximity” but since when has that been valid? If it were then Morocco should claim the Canary Islands. Venezuela should claim Trinidad and Tobago, also Curacao, Aruba, etc. France should claim the Channel Islands. Canada should claim St Pierre and Miquelon. And dozens other examples. The claim is invalid and childish. Grow up..!!!

  55. AnthonyR:
    Manzil,

    Because Argentina can’t be trusted thats why.Once bitten, twice shy..!

    Manzil,

    And why shouldn’t we?? its a two way question that will suit some and not others I say we should you say not.

  56. Manzil on said:

    SA:
    Good to see the nutters out on this one.Hello nutters how are ye?

    I’m glad it’s not just me.

  57. Don Alberto on said:

    Andy Newman: Incidently, how would the Falklands Islands economy fare without the support of Britain?

    Ok, let us withdraw British troops, British economic support, British administration, and let the islanders stand on their own two feet.

    Give us a trustworthy source for “British economic support”, please.

    (Answer: NONE, the Falkland Islands GDP – per capita (PPP): $55,400 (2002 est.) – fisheries, tourism, wool, … – Argentina’s GDP/PPP is US$ 18 200)
    https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/rankorder/2004rank.html?countryName=Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas)&countryCode=fk&regionCode=soa&rank=8#fk – (copy the entire address to include ‘Islands (Islas …)

    Give us a trustworthy source for “British administration”, please.

    (Answer: unicameral Legislative Assembly (10 seats; 2 members are ex officio and 8 are elected by popular vote); the governor must obey the rulings of the Executive Council on domestic affairs https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/fk.html

  58. Gerald Corper on said:

    The Islands should be handed back to the Argentinians. This voting by the islanders is a farce, who are making a tea party out of it. Its also a pathetic ploy by our government to evade the real issues. The Argentinians claim for it to be there’s is because its origins are of the people, in that area of the world, so why shouldn’t they want it? The Fijian Islands was an unspoilt paradise when I visited it in the 1970s, but non-indiginous and political interference ruined its natural habitat.
    The overall general support for the islanders to remain under and as a British sovereignty is a lot of flag waving patriotic blustering, and like the Government all those that support staying on the island lack moral fibre.
    If the Argentinians had annexed our islands the British attitude would be in reverse, and thats hypocrisy.
    Hong Kong was returned to China and despite an agreement having been made decades before, it was done because it was economically viable to do so. That’s history, of a Victorian age where the British Empire annexed half the world.
    If you believe in the American Indian’s rights, the Australian Aboriginal’s claims of land ownership, you would believe the Argentinians do have at least a point to make. All this technical jargon of ownership is all talk and agreeing with yourselves in a mirror. I am by birth a British subject and wish OUR island to remain that way also.

  59. Don Alberto on said:

    Gerald Corper: If you believe in the American Indian’s rights, the Australian Aboriginal’s claims of land ownership, you would believe the Argentinians do have at least a point to make.

    What is the point?

    Argentina is the result of Spanish colonialism and the genocide of the indigenous people in present day Argentina.

    The number of indigenous people in Argentina today is 600.329 = 1.46%
    The rest of the Argentina population (98.54%) is implanted from mostly Italy, Spain, the rest of Europe and Asia.

    http://www.desarrollosocial.gob.ar/Uploads/i1/Institucional/6.InformacionEstadistica.pdf

  60. Gerald Corper on said:

    Your answers may be technically (and polically) correct, though you speak more of the widespread of multi-culturism but the placement of this island is and has always been of its origins, long ago for those who inhabited it, long before the specific flag waving or annexing of the Island. I see little point, both socially and economically of having such control so far away and in the glare of those so close, who naturally feel for it, but who are denied it.
    For the islanders its a paradise island who have little care or sense for it
    historically or traditionally, except to wave around their union jacks.
    Realistically, most will find what I have to say irrelevant.

  61. Martin woodhead on said:

    The islanders want to be left alone they know the British have and comtinue to let them do there own thing.
    argentina wouldnt and can’t be trusted
    it must grate that 1500 people are going to vote to remain British because they are quite happy to be british.

  62. Don Alberto on said:

    Gerald Corper: The Islands should be handed back to the Argentinians.

    How could they be “handed back”?

    I have been studying this subject for years, and it quite clear from the documents, that the Falkland Islands are British.

    If not before, then the Falkland Islands were ceded to Britain by Argentina in the 1850 peace treaty (“Convention between Great Britain and the Argentine Confederation, …”). Signed in Buenos Aires 24 November 1849 and ratified 15 May 1850.

    Argentine sources:

    “7°. Mediante esta convencion queda restablicida la perfecta amistad entre el gobierno de la Confederacion, y el de su Majestad Británica, á su anterior estado de buena inteligencia y cordalidad.”

    “VII. Under this convention perfect friendship between her Britannic Majesty’s government and the government of the Confederation, is restored to its former state of good understanding and cordiality.”

    Argentine source: http://tratados.cancilleria.gob.ar/busqueda.php?consulta=si&modo=c (enter dates ‘Fecha de firma’ 31/08/1850 to 31/08/1850 press ‘Buscar’ and get “CONVENCIÓN DE PAZ Y AMISTAD ENTRE LA CONFEDERACIÓN ARGENTINA Y LA FRANCIA”)

    So: ‘perfecta amistad’ Perfect friendship, no sovereignity dispute.

    This fact was later confirmed by two Argentine presidents and a vice president in their ‘State of the nation’ speeches:

    1. Argentine president Bartolomé Mitre’s message at the opening of the Argentine Congress on 1 May 1865. Mitre said that Argentina had scrupulously fulfilled undertakings with Britain and France, so “… no ha habido sino motivos para consolidar las relaciones amistosas que existen entre éste y aquellos gobiernos.” – “Mensaje del Presidente de la República Argentina, Bartolomé Mitre, ante la Asamblea Legislativa” (1865): http://constitucionweb.blogspot.com.ar/2010/09/mensaje-del-presidente-de-la-republica_5176.html (Argentine source: Heraclio Mabragaña, “Los Mensajes 1810-1910″, Buenos Aires 1910, vol. III, p. 227, online scan http://lanic.utexas.edu/larrp/pm/sample2/argentin/history/651141.html).

    “there was nothing to prevent the consolidation of friendly relations between this country and those governments [France and Britain].” (Source: British and Foreign State Papers, 1865-1866 (printed London 1870), p. 1174).

    So: No dispute between Britain and Argentina over the Falklands.

    2. Vice-president Marcos Paz’s opening speach to the Argentine Congress on 1 May 1866:

    “Este mismo gobierno [= el gobierno británico] aceptó por árbitro al Presidente de la República de Chile, sobre perjuicios sufridos por súbditos ingleses en 1845. Aun no se ha resuelto esta cuestión que es la única que con aquella nación subsiste.” – “Mensaje del Vicepresidente de la República Argentina, Marcos Paz, en ejercicio del Poder Ejecutivo, ante la Asamblea Legislativa” (1866) http://constitucionweb.blogspot.com.ar/2010/09/mensaje-del-vicepresidente-de-la_06.html (Argentine source: Heraclio Mabragaña, “Los Mensajes 1810-1910″, Buenos Aires 1910, vol. III, pag. 238, online scan http://lanic.utexas.edu/larrp/pm/sample2/argentin/history/661152.html)

    “The British Government has accepted the President of the Republic of Chile as arbitrator in the reclamation pending with the Argentine Republic, for damages suffered by English subjects in 1845. This question, which is the only one between us and the British nation, has not yet been settled.”
    (British and Foreign State Papers 1866-1867, printed London 1871, p. 1009).

    So: Only one dispute: British (merchant’s) losses. No dispute between Britain and Argentina over the Falklands.

    3. Argentine president Domingo Faustino Sarmiento’s Message to the Argentine Congress on 1 May 1869:

    “El estado de nuestras relaciones exteriores responde á las aspiraciones del país. Nada nos reclaman las otras Naciónes: nada tenemos que pedir de ellas, sino es la continuación de las manifestaciones de simpatía con que de parte de pueblos y gobiernos ha sido favorecida la República por sus progresos y espíritu de justicia.”
    (Argentine source: Heraclio Mabragaña 1910, vol. III, p. 286, Biblioteca Nacional de la República Argentina, Agüero 2502, Recoleta, Buenos Aires, online scan http://lanic.utexas.edu/larrp/pm/sample2/argentin/history/691201.html – third section on page)

    “The state of our foreign relations fulfils the aspirations of the country. Nothing is claimed from us by other nations; we have nothing to ask of them except that they will persevere in manifesting their sympathies, with which both Governments and peoples have honoured the Republic, both for its progress and its spirit of fairness.” (printed in: British and Foreign State Papers 1870-1871 (printed London 1877), p. 1227-1228).

    So: No dispute between Britain and Argentina over the Falklands.

  63. Don Alberto on said:

    But, but, but – didn’t the various Argentine governments protest British sovereignity?

    Commencing 1833 and through December 1849 the ‘Confederación Argentina’ regularly and officially protested British sovereignity in diplomatic letters and in the “Message to Congress”.

    After signing the peace treaty in 1850 the Argentine protests stopped.

    There were no more protests and no mention of the Falkland Islands in the annual ‘State of the nation’ speeches.

    Except for one single diplomatic letter in 1888 protesting British sovereignity, there were no official Argentine protests during the years 1850 to 1941.

    So: The answer is no, the various Argentine governments did not protest British sovereignity for 90 years after the peace treaty.

    Argentine source: “Alfredo Becerra, Protestas por Malvinas, Buenos Aires, 1998″ online index: http://cajaeditora.com.ar/kjimalvin.html

  64. Tony Collins: By the way, not happy with use of the word “nutters” here. Can’t we just call them horrible right-wing trolls?

    Certainly ‘nutters’ withdrawn.

  65. AnthonyR on said:

    @ Gerald Corper,

    So if you are consistent then Gibraltar should be handed back to the Spanish?

    On at least 2 occasions Gibraltarians (most of whom are native Spanish-speakers) have voted by a huge margin to remain British too. And, unlike Argentina, Spain is a decently-run 1st world country with a low crime rate. Why would you deny English-speaking Falklanders the same rights, esp considering that Argentina is such a s*** country – trust me it is. It can only be as a result of some kind of anti-colonial submissive self-abasement on your part.

  66. AnthonyR on said:

    Even if the Argentina claim has some degree of validity, albeit trivial, their much belated claim to South Georgia and its dependencies (circa 1940) is totally spurious as the Spanish never had any connection to those islands. In fact by the Treaty of Tordessilas it fell within the Portuguese sphere of influence – but the Portuguese never bothered to claim it either, and it was only discovered (by Captain Cook) in 1778 or thereabouts. If, as I understand it, the Argentine claim is purely based on the fact it is/was administered as a dependency of the Falklands from Port Stanley – then that in itself is de facto recognition of the British claim to both sets of islands.

  67. Don Alberto on said:

    So if you are consistent then Gibraltar should be handed back to the Spanish?

    – and the Zulus should be thrown out of South Africa, large parts of which they usurped about 300 years ago.

    The country should be handed back to the Bantus – but they usurped the land in the 9th century, so the Bantus should be expelled too, ….

    A total redraw of the world map is waiting.

  68. Jellytot on said:

    @79esp considering that Argentina is such a s*** country

    An appallingly xenophobic statement that should not be permitted on a Socialist blog.

    trust me it is.

    Why on earth would we trust you?

  69. This referendum is a sham. We pretty much know what the result will be. Its no more than a desperate attempt of colonial settlers to assert what they believe is their superiority and supremacy against the march of history and progress. Its a bit like the days of Apartheid when only the white minority could vote, and naturally they would vote for the status quo, ie the continuation of the barbaric Apartheid regime. I have commented on this subject several times in the past and do not wish to repeat myself yet again. Unfortunately the Kelpers posting here are really showing what racist and patronising bigots they are and are not really endearing themselves to us. However, I really don’t see what the problem is with the Malvinas being part of Argentina with full rights as an autonomous region, a regional assembly with proper powers and MP’s in the Argentinian parliament. They would do what elected representatives are supposed to do, represent people and request that appropriate resources for infrastructure, health, education. etc. are deployed. The islanders could keep their language and dual nationality if they wish. Surely this would be a better alternative than what they have now? The islands may legally be a British Overseas Territory but what does that really mean? Unlike the French Overseas Departments which not only have elected regional councils but elect MP’s to the French parliament on the same terms and with the same status and rights as representatives from mainland France. BTW I don’t necessarily support this and would prefer that all European and American colonies gained their independence, so am only using this example to point out that The Malvinas can’t even elect representatives to Westminster on the same terms as the UK. They only have what in British terms is no more than a glorified Parish Council. Latin America is a continent on the rise while Europe is going down the pan:

    http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/the-other-americas-are-booming-latin-america-has-its-best-prospects-for-a-century-8527831.html

    Wouldn’t it be better to join and be part of a forward looking multi cultural continent than being a backward looking reactionary mono cultural remnant of Empire and colonialism? These people cling on a to a UKIP/Daily Mail type vision of Britain that thankfully has long ceased to exist. Isn’t it time they moved on and joined the real world?

  70. Don Alberto on said:

    red snapper: I really don’t see what the problem is with the Malvinas being part of Argentina with full rights as an autonomous region

    You are theorizing.

    If you had lived in Argentina, as I have for some years, or if you had any knowledge of life in Argentina, you would understand the problem.

    The government is doing its utmost to suppress opposition media and to subject the judiciary under it, the inflation is app 30%, at least 25% of the population is living in abject poverty, land owned by indigenous people is confiscated, Argentina is no. 102 on the corruption index together with Gabon and Tanzania (1 is best), crime is severe, GDP (PPP) Argentina: US$ 18 200, Falkland Islands: $55,400, an Argentine promise to respect the islanders is worthless (re. e.g. the arbitration over the Beagle Sound islands), etc.

    Go to Argentina on your next vacation, travel the country, see the above with your own eyes.

  71. paul fauvet on said:

    #53 “In other words your information comes from left-wing ideologues”.

    Hilarious. Looks as if the last ditch defenders of Falklands sovereignty didn’t even bother to look at the title of this blog before commenting.

    #84 “You are all so incredibly pathetic..!!!” So why on earth do you bother to debate with us? Judging by the length of this thread, some of you have put a lot of effort into this.

    As for Don Alberto’s wearisomely ignorant comment about Zulus – he is apparently unaware that you can’t contrast Zulus to Bantus for the simple reason that the Zulus are one of many Bantu peoples. And of course nobody has suggested that Zulus or any other ethnic group (including English or Afrikaans speaking whites) should be expelled from South Africa. Just as no ethnic cleansing of the Falkland Islands is being suggested.

    It is not at all difficult to imagine solutions involving some pooling of sovereignty, some autonomous status for the Islands, plus international guarantees for the Islanders’ rights. The Islanders would be far better advised to opt for this, rather than an assumption that British governments, on the other side of the planet, will defend them for all eternity.

    While I am, in principle, in favour of self-determination, the size of the self-determining unit matters. I have yet to hear anyone arguing that a housing estate in Hackney, with more people than the Falklands, has the right to self-determination.

  72. paul fauvet: It is not at all difficult to imagine solutions involving some pooling of sovereignty, some autonomous status for the Islands, plus international guarantees for the Islanders’ rights.

    Yes, as I pointed out above, the Aaland Islands, give a very goof model of how this could be resolved to everyone’s satisfaction.

    Andy Newman: consider the reasonable analogous case of the AAland islands, where the wishes of the islanders were taken into consdieration, but not allowed to prevent a reasonable and conflict avoiding resolution between sweden and finland.
    http://untreaty.un.org/ola/media/info_from_lc/POB%20Aalands%20Islands%20Exhibition%20opening.pdf

  73. red snapper: The Malvinas can’t even elect representatives to Westminster on the same terms as the UK. They only have what in British terms is no more than a glorified Parish Council. Latin America is a continent on the rise while Europe is going down the pan:

    The 1945 Labour governmet did offer to incorporate Malta and Gibralter into the UK, offering them 3 MPs between them IIRC, but both declined.

    The Falklands could never have MPs in the British parliament, as with a population of 1600 voters they wouldn’t even constitute a ward on most borough councils.

  74. Martin woodhead on said:

    #84 would it be better to join argentina? the welcoming mulitculutral society that has

    argentina thats called them non people.
    Thats attempted to organise a blocade
    Thats never apologised for invading
    That celebrated a terrorist attack against the island

    Refuses to talk to the islanders and harrasses them at every chance I can see that being a wonderful welcoming country.

  75. paul fauvet on said:

    So, Martin Woodhead, you imagine that the status quo can last for ever, do you?

    The harsh reality is that you can’t choose your neighbours, and sooner or later the inhabitants of the Falkland Islands will have to reach a modus vivendi with Argentina.

    And, since conditions might be much less favourable in the future, it would be smart to negotiate a deal with Argentina now.

    Also, it’s no good whining that those nasty Argentinians once called us “non-people” – the whole point about negotiations is that you negotiate, not with your best friends, but with your opponents, with people who disagree with you.

  76. John Grimshaw on said:

    “…he is apparently unaware that you can’t contrast Zulus to Bantus for the simple reason that the Zulus are one of many Bantu peoples.” Correct, although he might have more ground to stand on if he had pointed out that the indigenous peoples of the South Africa region are in fact the “browns” as they are some times contemptuously referred to, or the San and the Khoi-san, (or the “Kalahari bushmen”). They have been consistently marginalised and discriminated against both by the Bantu and white settlers.

  77. John Grimshaw on said:

    “While I am, in principle, in favour of self-determination, the size of the self-determining unit matters. I have yet to hear anyone arguing that a housing estate in Hackney, with more people than the Falklands, has the right to self-determination.”

    Passport to Pimlico?

  78. Jannick Jensen on said:

    AndyS.,

    Actually…Britain’s claim isn’t as solid as everyone might think. Argentina has a strong case too, since they inherited the claim from the Spanish Empire. Spanish territorial sovereignty’s consolidated by a Papal bill authorised by the-then Pope Alexander VI, in 1493. The bill provisioned a Maritime border line between the spanish and the portugese; with the falklands landmass on the Spanish side. Britain first landed on the island in 1690 and planted a union flag as claim of ownership.

    The french were however de facto the first setttlers- founding the town of Port Saint Louis in 1764. The french then asked the Spanish to maintain the colony in order to prevent their nemesis- Britain; the chance to usurp the island.The Spanish kicked the British out in 1767 and renamed the Port. The Brits came back in 1833 en force and forcibly took the island and expelled the numerically inferior Spanish garrison.

    If one recognizes the legal binding power of the 1493 Papal Bill as valid, then the British claim has never had any de jure legitimacy, whatsoever. And talks of relying it on democratic vote is useless- since 29% of the settlers are British; 60% are Falklanders (kelpers); of which 70% are of British or American descent. Obviously…they’d wannit to remain UK! I mean, are you kidding me? xD

    It’s called colonial naturalisation. you get to choose what game you wanna play when you OWN the ball field. it’s cultural assimilation/ domination. The question is whether the sovereignty has been legit at all; or not…NOT whether the British settlers want to be British or not loool ;]

    Jannick.

  79. John Grimshaw on said:

    #84/88/90 Just to play devil’s advocate for a while. If I understand correctly all the BOTs have internal democratic arrangements and since 2002 all their populations are Britsh Citizens, with the exception of Akrotiri and Dhekelia on Cyprus which is run my the military, South Georgia, the Sandwich Islands and the Antartic territories which has no population, and the British Indian Ocean Territories who’s population was betrayed to the USA.

    So whilst it may be true as Paul says that now might be a good time to do a deal with the Argentinians ( although I understand that Uruguay also has a claim to the Falklands) under what circumstances would socialists pressure a group of people to do something they don’t want to do just because they maybe not be (from our point of view) acting rationally? Nationalism never having being entirely rational anyhow. Equally as Redsnapper says the BOTs don’t have the same rights as the French Departments, however size not withstanding I see no reason why they couldn’t elect to Westminster should they wish to do so. The Uk parliament has just spent much time debating and getting no-where rationalising the size of unequak British constituencies afterall. I suspect in any case (vis Thatcher before the Argentinian invasion) that the current BOT arrangement is so that the UK Parliament can sell out these British Citizens should it be expedient in the future.

  80. John Grimshaw on said:

    “Spanish territorial sovereignty’s consolidated by a Papal bill authorised by the-then Pope Alexander VI, in 1493.” I fail to see how a Papal Bull passed in the fifteenth century aimed at legitimising the rights of Spanish and Portuguese oppressors to enslave and exploit the native populations of South America and then to justify black slavery, has any relevance on this matter. Especially given that the Spanish authorities were subsequently thrown out by revolution in the nineteenth century.

  81. John Grimshaw: I fail to see how a Papal Bull passed in the fifteenth century aimed at legitimising the rights of Spanish and Portuguese oppressors to enslave and exploit the native populations of South America and then to justify black slavery, has any relevance on this matter.

    That’s not quite what it did, it allocated territory most of it not under the sway of the beneficaries. While it was breathtaking in its arrogance it was no different from Elizabethan land claims pretensions based on pseudo Arthurian precedents. The point is these documents were products of the legal systems of the day and no more or less valid than later claims based on naked military might.

  82. Rockhopper on said:

    ” the … analogous case of the AAland islands, where the wishes of the islanders were taken into consdieration, but not allowed to prevent a reasonable and conflict avoiding resolution between sweden and finland.”

    Unfortunately, Argentine internal politics has never been reasonable or conflict-avoiding. No doubt any future Argentine government with power over the Falklands based on a treaty would treat the treaty and the Falklanders with the same consideration Argentine governments have traditionally shown to treaties and Argentine citizens they disagreed with.

  83. Martin woodhead on said:

    The falklands is british unless the Islanders wish to change there minds that situation is not changing anytime soon.
    Those who would sell out the islanders to make argentina feel better without even meeting or talking to the islanders would seem to be on the side of the US military and the chagossians there lots ore a,ericans and they needed an airbase seems perfectly reasonable.

  84. Rockhopper: Unfortunately, Argentine internal politics has never been reasonable or conflict-avoiding.

    Has British politics be either reasonable or conflict avoiding? Britain has been involved in far more wars that Argentina.

    Rockhopper: treat the treaty and the Falklanders with the same consideration Argentine governments have traditionally shown to treaties and Argentine citizens they disagreed with.

    And how has Britain treated the Chaogos islanders?

    It is just stupid to think that the British government’s support for the Falklanders is anything but expedient and conjunctural. There is no principal at stake, it is just a political pose currently convenient for London.

    Considering that there is insufficient political will to upgrade the Scillonian ferry and the port at Penzance to ensure the long term viability of the Isles of Scilly, which are actually part of England; you can assure yourself that the Falklands islanders are completely expendible. In which case developing sustainable links with Argentina while the Falklanders have a good bargaining hand might be better than going to them cap in hand later.

  85. Martin woodhead on said:

    Except we had to fight for the islands so argentina isnt getting them.
    the islands unlike before the war are doing quite nicely and the oil is about to flow.
    Therefore the islanders will be able to pay for the defence costs.
    Argentina walked away from a treaty to share oil exploration and fishery development unlucky.
    It may be something argentina crys about it isnt a problem for the UK

  86. Martin woodhead: Except we had to fight for the islands so argentina isnt getting them.

    Yes fairly touch and go wasn’t it but that’s the nub of it- Britain’s claims rest on military might.

    The current stunt is only PR were the UK to decide to hand the islands over it would do so whatever the inhabitants thought.

    So the question remains can Britain keep a hold of them. In the medium run probably not. Wise people would negotiate now and get a better deal.

    Latin America is united against the UK on this issue and crucially non of the great powers are interested in supporting the UK. So isolated politicaly and a fourth rate power militarily the UK options are not great.

  87. Martin woodhead on said:

    Er 2nd rate military power against 10th rate argentina.
    Nobody else in south america is going to bleed for argentinas colonialist demands.
    Even if they did the technological mismatch between the Royal Navy and latin americas navies and air forces are massive.
    We have well drilled plans to reinforce the garrison
    Air defence destroyers that carry more missiles than argentina has fast jets
    Nuclear attack subs with cruise missiles. Argentina had a ship sink in port.
    So the next 50 years advantage uk.

  88. That’s good Martin no more talk of the islanders notional democratic rights but a simple expression of military capability as the decisive factor.

    The problem is money and logistics but a detailed discussion would prove tedious for readers I’m sure.

  89. Martin woodhead on said:

    Well when Argentina wont listen to the islanders democratic rights.
    it will have to listen to “the last argument of kings”

  90. Martin woodhead: Nobody else in south america is going to bleed for argentinas colonialist demands.

    I think you have very much misread the mood in Latin American politics, the Falklands colony is seen accross the continent as just an ornament of British imperialism used as an excuse for an unwelcome and anachronistic military outpost, giving London a foothold where we are not welcome.

    There is huge sympathy for Argentina’s position.

    Martin woodhead: Even if they did the technological mismatch between the Royal Navy and latin americas navies and air forces are massive.
    We have well drilled plans to reinforce the garrison
    Air defence destroyers that carry more missiles than argentina has fast jets
    Nuclear attack subs with cruise missiles

    This is “boys own” nonsense, remember the British army, defeated and cowering at Basra airport, having to ask the Americans to take over combat responsibilties in the sector, and having to negotiate safe passage for themselves with the Islamist militias. (this isn’t leftst nonsense, this is how a British general described it to me).

    Britain has absolutely not got the military capacity to refight the Falklands war, even if it wanted to.

    I think you also forget that the UK is not unjustly called “perfidious Albion”, if the Falklands colony becomes an obstacle to trade or some other strategic interest, then it will be abandoned without any undue sentiment, and the sheep botherers will be left to negotiate whatever they can with Argentina.

  91. AnthonyR on said:

    paul fauvet,
    @ Paul Fauvet #86

    Don Alberto may have been wrong about the Zulus (as you pointed out, they are indeed “Bantu” which simply means “people”) but he is spot-on in his info on the govt of and conditions within Argentina. Also his detailed point about Argentina having accepted British sovereignty from 1850 to 1941 – nobody has been able to refute that. IMO their claim is trivial, childish, and opportunistic, as evidenced by my point re S.Georgia.

    As for your comment about a housing estate in Hackney, that is just plain daft. The Falklands are a substantial-sized archipelago far from a mainland (not even connected by a continental shelf) – the community there has had a continual unbroken existence since 1833, far longer than scores of independent island states with UN membership, for which population size has never been a condition of membership. As for the small population, the main reason for that is the relentless ongoing hostility from Argentina which has made access difficult and investment unsure. And that of course is a major reason why Argentina feels it has to keep up the pressure, as the permanent condition of uncertainty puts off both investors and immigrants, rather like the sanctions on Rhodesia and S.Africa did. So, in effect, the Falklands small population is like a self-fulfilling prophesy.

  92. AnthonyR: And that of course is a major reason why Argentina feels it has to keep up the pressure, as the permanent condition of uncertainty puts off both investors and immigrants, rather like the sanctions on Rhodesia and S.Africa did. So, in effect, the Falklands small population is like a self-fulfilling prophesy.

    Yes, I agree with your analogy that the Falklands Islanders should have as much sympathy from the left as the Rhodesian settlers and the Afrikaaners.

  93. AnthonyR: As for the small population, the main reason for that is the relentless ongoing hostility from Argentina which has made access difficult and investment unsure.

    This is nonsense, for much of the life of the Falklands Colony Britain was the pre-eminent naval power in the world, and had there been any strategic interest in developing the colony, they could have done so regardless of the interests of Buenos Aires.

  94. AnthonyR on said:

    paul fauvet: the whole point about negotiations is that you negotiate, not with your best friends, but with your opponents, with people who disagree with you.

    “Negotiating” with untrustworthy arrogant bullies = APPEASEMENT.

  95. Martin woodhead on said:

    Basra was a coin op that Blair had lost intrest in.
    Any theortical south Atlantic conflict would be high end war fighting which we excel at no civillians no IEDS we have boots on the ground an air base and 7 nuclear attack subs already paid for any one would give all south american navies a nightmare.
    The fact is argentina has no ability to attack the falklands in any ability at all.

  96. AnthonyR: “Negotiating” with untrustworthy arrogant bullies = APPEASEMENT.

    Don’t worry, Argentina is prepared to negotiate despite Britain’s well deserved reputation as “untrustworthy arrogant bullies”

  97. AnthonyR on said:

    Jannick Jensen: If one recognizes the legal binding power of the 1493 Papal Bill as valid, then the British claim has never had any de jure legitimacy, whatsoever.

    I had to re-read this several times just to be sure you were being serious. I thought it might be another socialist “joke” along the hilarious lines of “Marxist Lennonist”. So, by your absurd analogy, Venezuela should be able to claim Trinidad & Tobago, Curacao, Aruba, etc, if not the entire chain of French, British and Dutch Caribbean islands?

    Ok, for the purposes of this discussion lets go back to the Treaty of Tordessilas (which I believe is what you are referring to) – what then is Argentina’s justification for claiming and invading South Georgia?

  98. Martin woodhead: Any theortical south Atlantic conflict would be high end war fighting which we excel at no civillians no IEDS we have boots on the ground an air base and 7 nuclear attack subs already paid for any one would give all south american navies a nightmare.

    So the argument becomes clearer, British sovereignty over the Malvinas islands is due to military strength alone, and supported by the fantasises of the fruitcake end of Empire nostalgists.

    Britain’s interest in the Falklands is a conditional one, and if push comes to shove
    certainly not worth alienating trade partners across the whole of Latin America for.

    Argentina has time and tide on its side.

  99. AnthonyR on said:

    Andy Newman: the difference is that St Helena does not have the same economic support as the Falklands,

    could that be because nobody has ever invaded or threatened to invade St.Helena?

  100. Martin woodhead on said:

    St helena is getting an Airport.

    Argentina failed to persuade the islanders in the 70s launched an invasion was defeated and now expects to get the islands if they whine enough.
    its not happening.

  101. AnthonyR on said:

    Andy Newman: Yes, I agree with your analogy that the Falklands Islanders should have as much sympathy from the left as the Rhodesian settlers and the Afrikaaners.

    That clearly was not my point as you well know, but like any self-hating hand-wringing leftist you couldn’t resist taking a ritual swipe at Rhodesians and South Africans.

  102. Martin woodhead on said:

    Its simple the islanders are a naive female student and argentina is a hunky older male socialist of course they should be dominated havnt you read your marx the swp version of course :)

    Although hunky is probably pushing it:)

  103. Martin woodhead: Basra was a coin op that Blair had lost intrest in.

    Here’s the bad news Martin the British Army is not very good. The fighting in the islands showed up serious difficulties with only the ‘elite’ formations being capable of what was required. You might have thought remedial action would have been taken but it was not. Lost I suppose in the euphoria of victory.

    Its well worth reading current US military opinion of their British equivalents – its not flattering.

    Those nuclear subs are of course important but where are they to be docked if Scotland goes. Also the nuclear weapons cannot be deployed without the agreement of the POTUS who it seems doesn’t fancy it.

    Its not really a rosy picture and it wont get any better.

    Negotiation is the ticket.

  104. Martin woodhead on said:

    Scotlands going nowhere and nuclear attack subs are not armed with nuclear weapons although timmerman is far from the only one confused about this.

  105. Rockhopper: Unfortunately, Argentine internal politics has never been reasonable or conflict-avoiding. No doubt any future Argentine government with power over the Falklands based on a treaty would treat the treaty and the Falklanders with the same consideration Argentine governments have traditionally shown to treaties and Argentine citizens they disagreed with.

    This is by the way, a bizarre caracature, I have never been to Argentina, but my brother was living there from 1981 to 1983, and my niece lived there more recently- enjoying the opportunity to visit somewhere where being a native Welsh speaker is an advantage. So I do know something of it.

    Argentina was vastly changed in the last 30 years, and is a vibrant, inclusive country

  106. AnthonyR on said:

    SA: The fighting in the islands showed up serious difficulties with only the ‘elite’ formations being capable of what was required.

    Its not much different with the US forces – you will note that all their most successful operations are performed by the (98% white male) Marines and Seals. The women and the blacks do the driving, the stores, the cooking, etc. The problem with operations in Iraq, Afghanistan, etc, is that they have to fight with one arm and one leg tied whenever civilians are around, which the courageous “freedom fighters” make sure there is. Imagine if we had fought WW2 this way, it would never have ended. “Cease firing everyone there are some innocent German civilians amongst the Waffen SS..! You know our orders are that anyone guilty of killing civilians will be investigated and possibly court-martialled..!”

  107. AnthonyR on said:

    Andy Newman: Argentina was vastly changed in the last 30 years, and is a vibrant, inclusive country

    As you say you have never been there. Welsh speakers? haha – you said 1982? Did you mean 1932? I spend several months every year in Argentina as my g/f is Argentine (Japanese descent) – I have travelled the length and breadth of the country and I can tell you the place is a mess on every level – political, physical, environmental, economical – and its full of thieves, nobody here trusts anyone. I have been robbed 4 times in the past 5 years, in hotel rooms, on the streets, physically even – this has rarely happened to me elsewhere. And I try to keep out of Buenos Aires which is awful – it is very dangerous although most tourists are blissfully unaware as the govt and media deliberately hushes it up. Mustn’t harm the tourist industry you know..! I know Britain also is not what it used to be but its nowhere near as bad as Argentina, although socialist race-replacement immigration “policies” designed to “rub the right’s nose in diversity” is gradually having its own perverse effect.

    As I said elsewhere Argentina needs to put its own house in order if they want to entice the FI to join them. I can’t see that happening in the foreseeable future – I am sure it will get worse, much worse.

    Well that post will give you a few red-herrings to slap me about with, won’t it? – whilst avoiding the real issue. Reality is such a bitch isn’t she?

  108. jack ford on said:

    Fact remains Anthony the British Army was defeated in Basra by the militias and the Americans had to come in to deal with the situation in Operation Charge of the Knights. It doens’t give me any pleasure to say this but that is what happened.

  109. Martin woodhead: Scotlands going nowhere and nuclear attack subs are not armed with nuclear weapons although timmerman is far from the only one confused about this.

    Yes unthinkable that Scotland goes until it does. My point about the POTUS is that his neutrality on the issue is likely to favour Latin America and that will include restrictions on military deployment. Booming, resource rich Latin America being more important is his world view.

    Will we see a second Suez moment?

  110. “know Britain also is not what it used to be but its nowhere near as bad as Argentina, although socialist race-replacement immigration “policies” designed to “rub the right’s nose in diversity” is gradually having its own perverse effect.”

    FFS. As I always suspected is what really lies behind this. Typical racist colonial supremacist settler mentality with more than a bit of militarism thrown in. Same as Ulster Unionists, Afrikaners, Rhodesians, and others of a similar ilk. So thats the real reason, you guys don’t want “inferior peoples” to infect your precious white outpost of Empire and Butchers Apron flying over lands where it has no right to be. The sooner these attitudes are consigned to the dustbin of history the better. You are a dying breed, or inbreds more like. Go take a swim mate, but we’ll keep the sheep for the celebratory asado after you’ve
    gone.

  111. jack ford on said:

    AnthonyR,

    Royal United Services Institute describes what happened

    http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/03071847.2013.774640

    Most of the actual fighting in Charge of the Knights was done by the Iraqi Army but US forces played a vital role directing the operation. The British were trapped at the airport.

    The Daily Mail (hardly a left wing paper) reported at the time how the British were forced to do a deal with the militias

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1041690/Secret-deal-Iraqi-militia-kept-British-troops-battle-Basra.html

    I regard the Iraq war as a criminal enterprise but putting politics aside it also caused massive damage to the reputation of the British army among the Americans. Tony Blair should be strung up.

  112. John Grimshaw on said:

    The problem here is some of you are happy to take the easy road of dealing with the stupid right-wingers without engaging with the broader issues on your own terms. :)

  113. jack ford on said:

    I’m sure that’s true. The British government is preprared to sacrifice the lives of its soldiers in an unwinnable war in Afghanistan in order to improve its standing in Washington just as the British government was happy to sacrifice the Chagossian Islanders and evict them from Diego Garcia in order to make way for a US military base.

    The way the UK treated the Chagossians demonstrates that the right of self determination of British subjects on small islands around the world goes out of the window when strategic interests are concerned. The Falkland Islanders are lucky that Argentina (for now) is a lot less powerful than the UK. Were Argentina a superpower the British government would appease it.

  114. AnthonyR on said:

    red snapper: You are a dying breed, or inbreds more like.

    No we’re not, more of us are being created every day – some of us grow up and cast-off the neo-marxist indoctrination peddled by the BBC, Guardian, etc – you should try it sometime, not the BBC/Guardian of course (I know you’ve done that) but growing-up I mean..!

  115. AnthonyR on said:

    jack ford,

    The problem is that these days the public has no stomach for military losses what with every death and injury being played out by the media in over-sentimental tragi-opera mode. So the British military was under orders to be ultra-cautious and touchy-feely, putting all its emphasis on “conciliation” and trying to “live with the enemy”. In a word – the same appeasement policy that the marxists here who want to do a deal with the corrupt govt of a country that has zero international credibility. Its impossible to win a war under these constraints.

  116. AnthonyR on said:

    jack ford: Were Argentina a superpower the British government would appease it.

    Undoubtedly true, but that doesn’t make it a just decision. Since Argentina is not a super-power we will not appease it, we will do the just thing and stand up for the islanders rights. (as Thatcher said to the Labourites in parliament after the Argies had surrendered – “you lot would have done nothing, nothing..!” And they shut up, because they knew it was true)

  117. AnthonyR: we will do the just thing and stand up for the islanders rights.

    I think we have already established this is about British interests and not islanders rights. The islanders rights thing is more for the BBC and Guardian rather than serious discussion.

  118. AnthonyR: cast-off the neo-marxist indoctrination peddled by the BBC, Guardian, etc

    Can you please explain what “neo-marxism” is? You have absolutely no idea what you’re talking about, and it’s not even playground level stuff for you to be using terms like “neo-marxist” and considering it a serious argument. I mean, seriously, aren’t you collapsing with laughter at even bringing up such terms and thinking that people here will take your ridiculous lack of intelligence seriously?

    Please, define “neo-marxist”. Or, to make it easier, define “marxist”. I’ll then want you to explain what about the BBC and Guardian are in any way marxist. See, it’s in comments like these that people can judge whether you’re actually serious or not.

  119. John Grimshaw on said:

    #136 SA you are right and I think we have established that. However this is not incompatible with the people who live in the Falklands having rights also. Somehow I dont think theres much Guardian reading going on in the Falklands either. Are you a right tabloid/Mail reader with an issue against the Grauniad? Or are you a wanna be working clkass fellow who thinksthe Graun is a conspiratorial sell out?

  120. AnthonyR on said:

    SA: I think we have already established this is about British interests and not islanders rights.

    I take this to mean the red-herring of the (as yet unimpressive) potential oil resources. Nonsense – there was no oil nor prospect of oil in 1982 and in previous years gutless Labour govts had tried to do a sneaky deal behind the islanders backs. Argentina invaded as a jingoistic diversion from its perennial economic problems. It is trying the same trick again now, this time under the pretext of a “peaceful solution”. BS – if they don’t get their way they will look for “unpeaceful solutions”. In case you didn’t know Argentina is heading for another massive collapse – there is no point negotiating with a country under these conditions. Wait until they have a responsible government that can be negotiated with in good faith. That won’t be anytime soon, the country will break-up before then, and what a god thing that would be for the Argentines.

  121. Not good enough. I don’t want a word. You have characterised one of the biggest broadcasting organisations in the world – not one I have any time for – as “neo-marxist”. In order to show that you’re serious, you’re going to need to be able to define your terms – cos in all your posts, you throw around so many laughable ones, it’s time for you to start growing up and actually using terms that mean something.

    So, please, explain you mean by “neo-marxism”. I don’t even have a clue what your one word meant, but I want to see some examples of how the BBC is “neo-marxist”.

    If you had even the slightest clue what you were talking about, you’d know that everyone on the left regards the BBC as just another instrument of the state, and in many ways far less open to left wing viewpoints than the independent media.

    But you don’t have the slightest clue, because it’s much more convenient for you to talk of “marxist self-hatred”, “neo-marxism” and other things that mean absolutely nothing, apart from that you lack the intelligence to really discuss issues like an adult.

  122. AnthonyR: The problem is that these days the public has no stomach for military losses what with every death and injury being played out by the media in over-sentimental tragi-opera mode. So the British military was under orders to be ultra-cautious and touchy-feely, putting all its emphasis on “conciliation” and trying to “live with the enemy”. In a word – the same appeasement policy that the marxists here who want to do a deal with the corrupt govt of a country that has zero international credibility. Its impossible to win a war under these constraints.

    Well those are the constraints that the squatters on the Malvinas need to be acquainted with, there is almost no prospect of Britain either having the capability or the military will to sustain commitment to the Falklands in the long term.

  123. This argument is moot point. The Falklanders will never accept Argentine rule as a matter of principle. If foreign invaders had come into my home and pointed guns at my family (Argentine conscripts – yes, ordinary Argentines not the ‘junta’ – actually did this) then I would feel the same way. Britain has the backing of both NATO and the EU on this issue and our economy has little to do with South America beyond the oil within Falkland waters, so we’re not going to give them up voluntarily as the Islanders don’t want us to. The only option left is invasion. Argentina has a decent number of ground attack fighters but they are all outdated and slow, so they would be shot down by naval batteries and rapier stations. They only have a couple of outdated interceptors, which would be no match for four of the best fighters in the world. They only have one troop transport, and only four major surface combat vessels, all of which are currently experiencing engine problems and a lack of ammunition. Prospects aren’t looking good are they? Take the hint – Argies not getting the Falklands.

  124. AnthonyR on said:

    Tony Collins: Not good enough. I don’t want a word.

    You asked for a definition and I gave you one to make it simple for you. I’m not going to waste my time on an essay but since you asked so nicely – not – I’ll elaborate a bit further.

    Neo-marxism (aka “cultural marxism”) = the dogma of innate cultural and racial equality. The dissemination of the idea, whether strongly implied or stated outright, that every human culture and race is intrinsically equal and none are superior or inferior. And if they appear to be so, that is solely due to racism, colonialism, oppression, exploitation – all of which are the sole preserve of the white race.

    Clearly this is a paradox because if whites, and whites only, are ever charged with such “social crimes” (which is the case 99% of the time, and please don’t try to deny this) then that amounts to a de-facto judgment that whites are morally and ethically inferior to all the other races. And, since one of the many (and ever-increasing) definitions of “racism” is “the belief that some races are, in general, morally inferior”, then “anti-racists” ( who only ever allege racism coming from whites) are themselves “racist”. But hey guys, not too much of this reality in one sitting, your woolly heads are already over-heating I can almost feel it here in the rainforest of Misiones.

  125. AnthonyR on said:

    Andy Newman: there is almost no prospect of Britain either having the capability or the military will to sustain commitment to the Falklands in the long term.

    This is why the UN and other such international bodies need to get off their self-righteous “anti-colonial” high horse and accept the historical facts and the facts on the ground – that the FI deserves international recognition and the protection from any future invasion that would come from that. Just as when Kuwait (a far younger political entity than FI) was invaded the UN (albeit grudgingly) approved its counter-invasion.

  126. AnthonyR: I take this to mean the red-herring of the (as yet unimpressive) potential oil resources.

    Why would define it so narrowly, plainly though islanders don’t count in the grand sum of policy – otherwise the Chagros islanders would be dictating events. A bit of honesty never harms.

    John Grimshaw: Are you a right tabloid/Mail reader with an issue against the Grauniad? Or are you a wanna be working clkass fellow who thinksthe Graun is a conspiratorial sell out?

    Don’t be such a bollox John you cannot seriously believe I’m either.

    The BBC and the Guardian are not unbiased sources of news and only very silly people think they are. As for the Guardian selling out its impossible – it remains steadfastly loyal to the interests of nice people like themselves. A sort of house magazine for wankers.

    Hope that helps you.

    Now the point about the rights of islanders is simple they will be subject to the policy imperatives of the British State.

  127. Theo: This argument is moot point. The Falklanders will never accept Argentine rule as a matter of principle.

    It is not up to them. The islanders are expendible pawns of British foreign policy.

  128. Jellytot on said:

    The whole of #144 is very similar to the “Racist with an O-Level” stuff the BNP and their hangers-on post on the Daily Telegraph comments pages.

  129. jack ford on said:

    The fact that some deeply unpleasant BNP headbangers seem to have jumped on the bandwagon doesn’t mean the Falkland islanders should be handed over to Argentina without their consent.

    The obvious solution would be co-sovereingty with autonomy for the islanders. A similar deal was negotiated between the UK and Spain over Gibraltar but the Gibraltarians voted it down in their referendum. The deal would have benefited the Gibraltar economy and the Gibraltarians wouldn’t have lost anything but they were totally obsessed with a dogmatic abstract notion of “sovereignty” Given the history with Argentina there’s no chance of a yes vote to such a deal on the Falklands either for the forseeable future but possibly some time in the middle of this century when the war generation have passed away attitudes may change.

  130. AndyS. on said:

    Andy Newman: That sounds like an accurate description of the die-hard supporters of Falklanders

    Nice grown up comment. I’ve yet to see any real argument that a settler colonial state like Argentina has any real moral or political claim to the Falklands or that the Kelpers have anything to gain by being subjected to Argentine rule. On the other hand this may just be the latest version of “revolutionary defeatism” under which any foreign power will supported against the UK and it’s citizens under the delusion that this will lead to a revolutionary overthrow of the ruling class. Sadly for those that hold to such views this is 2013 not 1917.

  131. red snapper on said:

    Can you mods please sort out AnthonyR as his crude racism and ignorant bigotry is really quite offensive. Same goes for his fellow Kelpers if that is what they are. Am fast coming to the conclusion that the best was to deal with these people is De-Kulakisation to get tid of the problem once and for all.

  132. Don Alberto on said:

    paul fauvet:
    As for Don Alberto’s wearisomely ignorant comment about Zulus – he is apparently unaware that you can’t contrast Zulus to Bantus for the simple reason that the Zulus are one of many Bantu peoples.

    Does that mean that the Zulus did not invade and usurp large parts of South Africa some 300 years ago?

    Grab a tiny detail and avoid the subject.

  133. Don Alberto on said:

    red snapper: Can you mods please sort out AnthonyR as his crude racism and ignorant bigotry is really quite offensive. Same goes for his fellow Kelpers

    Can you mods please sort out red snapper as his crude racism and ignorant bigotry is really quite offensive, calling the Falkland Islanders “kelpers” – also Andy Newman who is calling the islanders “squatters”.

    Stone and house of glass.

  134. Martin woodhead on said:

    #153 hmm nice but not being a naive student unlikey to be bent over to be raped.

    thats the problem in the real world people are inconvienent and won’t do whats “best”
    For them because they like thinking for themselves. The islanders have voted and completely ingnored your views as has the British goverment.

  135. AnthonyR on said:

    red snapper: Can you mods please sort out AnthonyR as his crude racism and ignorant bigotry is really quite offensive. Same goes for his fellow Kelpers if that is what they are. Am fast coming to the conclusion that the best was to deal with these people is De-Kulakisation to get tid of the problem once and for all.

    Give me one example of anything I said that can be deemed even moderately “racist” let alone crude. The truth is that you lefties simply cannot deal with the truth when it clashes with your foolish world-view and so your first and only reaction is to go crying to teacher hoping he will censure me and save your gentle soul from reality. What a snivelling moral coward you and your sort are.

  136. red snapper: Can you mods please sort out AnthonyR as his crude racism and ignorant bigotry is really quite offensive. Same goes for his fellow Kelpers if that is what they are.

    Well normally I would agree with you, but I think this whole exchange has been highly illuminating of what the real attitudes and beliefs are of the pro-Falklands lobby. Racism, neo-fascism, jingoism, and unabashed militarism.

  137. Martin woodhead on said:

    Jingoism and militiarism well when you’ve explained slowly and loudly using small words the falklands are British and staying that way unless the islanders change there mind. repeatidly being told hand them over or else does tend to bring out the come and take them.
    Facist not really red snappers the one with the gulag fetish although would probably fill it with nubile naive students that need reeducation.
    Rather than ex squaddies how might put up a fight.

  138. Marxist Lennonist on said:

    AnthonyR,

    Despicable comment. Are you arguing that human races are NOT equal?

    Btw this slipping of the mask doesn’t fit in well with the too clever by half attacks on Argentina higher up on this thread for itself effectively being “too white”!

  139. Marxist Lennonist on said:

    AnthonyR,

    “Give me one example of anything I said that can be deemed even moderately “racist” let alone crude.”

    You said the rces are not equal ffs! Or, to be absolutely even handed, you “cleverly” implied they aren’t by criticising the “neo-Marxist dogma” that they are

  140. AnthonyR on said:

    Marxist Lennonist: You said the rces are not equal ffs!

    Oh my god – am I to be crucified for merely suggesting or implying that this might “perhaps” be the case? Did you not once in your tiny blinkered mind – even when a child, which you obviously still are – not at least wonder about such an “improbable” possibility? As I suspected from previous voyages into the strange imaginary world of the left – you guys will not listen to any argument – even, or especially, a well-reasoned one – that threatens to contradict your strange delusions. You lot really are suffering a mental disease – and if you are typical of those “British” who would sacrifice other (much better) real Britons to the living hell of the Argentine peoples dictatorship then all I can say is that you pathetic lot of whiners do not deserve to be born “British”, or any other civilised nation.

    Sayonara and good riddance to bad rubbish – I’m outa here.

    I

  141. John Grimshaw on said:

    #154 You obviously didn’t read my comment at #91. The historical incident/period you are referring to is called the Mfecane in Zulu or Difeqane in Xhosa. Loosely this translates as “the scattering”. Between 1815 and 1840 there was a vast movement of many tribes in various directions, wholesale destruction, violence and slaughter. Cannibalism has been alleged. The reasons for this are uncertain. Zulu expansionism is one factor, but there was also a ten year drought. Portuguese settlers had relatively recently introduced grain crops, as opposed to Maize, which whilst more productive requires significantly more water to cultivate. One historian has cited the impact of Portuguese slave traders operating out of what is now Mozambique. Others still the ivory trade. What is not in doubt however is that the Zulu are Bantu and speak a Bantu language. Furthermore the massive destabilisation of the Mfecane ultimately benefitted the Voortrekkers the most who were able to create the Transvaal and the Orange Free State out of a substantially depopulated area, and impose a racist-white supremacist regime on the “indigenous” population (in the sense that any one is indigenous).

  142. @Andy. Post 159: “Well normally I would agree with you, but I think this whole exchange has been highly illuminating of what the real attitudes and beliefs are of the pro-Falklands lobby. Racism, neo-fascism, jingoism, and unabashed militarism.”

    You surprised at this? Its what Iv’e always said whenever the issue is discussed on this blog, response is usually denial that this is the case and I get denounced as some kind of bigot for stating which for some of you is an uncomfortable truth.
    These people are vile bigots who refuse to see the world beyond their beloved Union Jack and are totally over indulged by British politicians and their bourgeois media no matter what the consequences may be for international relations. Same thing goes for Ulster Unionists, Gibraltarians, Israelis and other colonial settler types around the world.

  143. Martin woodhead on said:

    nice red snapper people who are inconvient have no rights.
    Your point of view would mean the chagos islands deserved what happened to them. After all the US was an allie and a few natives are of no importance.

  144. John Grimshaw on said:

    red snapper: These people are vile bigots who refuse to see the world beyond their beloved Union Jack and are totally over indulged by British politicians and their bourgeois media no matter what the consequences may be for international relations. Same thing goes for Ulster Unionists, Gibraltarians, Israelis and other colonial settler types around the world.

    I take your point but I doubt very much whether the Israeli’s you refer to would be flying the UK flag. Equally when you refer to “colonial settler types” where do you want to draw the line? USA? Australia? Han in Tibet? Russian Slavs in Estonia? Etc.

  145. Manzil on said:

    John Grimshaw,

    An interesting point about the Mfecane is Julian Cobbing’s argument, which posited that the Mfecane was an historical construct designed to delegitimise African claims that white settlement dispossessed them of the land – i.e. the blacks destroyed each other and the Europeans just took over a depopulated ‘land without a people’, or at any rate a land without a civilised people with rights.

    A reasonable case can be made that ‘African’ conflict was part of the disciplinary effects of the growing world market, rather than an irrational explosion of indigenous violence: Portuguese slavers in Delagoa Bay sought black labour for the Brazilian sugar plantations, and white settlers’ “missionary” activities were designed to coerce black labour south into the growing Cape Colony, both spurring on Zulu expansionism.

    Unfortunately, the records are so scanty that it’s virtually impossible for us to know for sure. We’re not even sure what the population or its geographic distribution was before or after the Zulus’ rise, so we can’t tell the extent to which drought, enslavement, labour reorganisation, or inter-African warfare were the predominant cause of the shift in land and power to the Europeans.

    But one thing is clear – as an ‘historical event’, the Mfecane has consistently been invoked for divisive, reactionary political purposes. (The Cobbing thesis was essentially aimed at the Apartheid academic establishment that used Mfecane to legitimate the South African regime.)

    In a modified form, the same attitude can be seen in the ludicrous demonisation and essentialising of Argentina by people within these comments – that the Argentinian nation is so inherently corrupt and villainous that any consideration of its rights is pre-emptively off-limits.

  146. Don Alberto on said:

    John Grimshaw: #154 You obviously didn’t read my comment at #91. The historical incident/period you are referring to is called the Mfecane in Zulu or Difeqane in Xhosa.

    I did read your #91 and when it comes to the Zulus you are undoubtly better informed than I am. My casual remark about them hereby withdrawn.

    My remark: “… avoid the subject”, however, was about the subject, which is:

    “FALKLAND ISLANDERS SHOULD VOTE ‘NO’ IN REFERENDUM ON BRITISH SOVREIGNTY”.

  147. Don Alberto on said:

    I entered this debate under the misapprehension that it would be an adult exchange of facts and opinions.

    Seeing the ad hominem arguments spouted by certain “debaters” I quite understand why AnthonyR decided to leave – to my mind, Jellytot’s # 165 “brilliant” remark “mwahhhh” says it all. It has shown itself to be mostly a mud throwing contest for adolescents.

  148. AndyS. on said:

    red snapper:
    @Andy. Post 159: “Well normally I would agree with you, but I think this whole exchange has been highly illuminating of what the real attitudes and beliefs are of the pro-Falklands lobby. Racism, neo-fascism, jingoism, and unabashed militarism.”

    You surprised at this? Its what Iv’e always said whenever the issue is discussed on this blog, response is usually denial that this is the case and I get denounced as some kind of bigot for stating which for some of you is an uncomfortable truth.
    These people are vile bigots who refuse to see the world beyond their beloved Union Jack and are totally over indulged by British politicians and their bourgeois media no matter what the consequences may be for international relations. Same thing goes for Ulster Unionists, Gibraltarians, Israelis and other colonial settler types around the world.

    Quite right. The sooner the Argentines and the rest of the remnents of Spanish colonialism return South America to it’s rightful owners the better.

  149. Funky Joe Stalin on said:

    red snapper: These people are vile bigots who refuse to see the world beyond their beloved Union Jack and are totally over indulged by British politicians and their bourgeois media no matter what the consequences may be for international relations. Same thing goes for Ulster Unionists, Gibraltarians, Israelis and other colonial settler types around the world.

    How do you think Argentina was settled?

    As for flag-waving and nationalism, few nations reach the heady heights of pig-headed aggressive nationalism as seen in Argentina. They make an average British citizen seem positively docile.

  150. Martin woodhead on said:

    Exactly spanish speaking italian immigrants have no basis to talk about stolen land.
    the Uk doesnt celebrate genociding natives on it currency.

  151. Martin woodhead on said:

    Argentina wants talks with the Uk goverment Uk goverent wont talk unless the islanders wish it seems pretty clear cut.
    argentina has nothing we want and is no threat..
    Unluckly Argentina your tears are delicous nectar long may they continue to pour.

  152. But as yesterday s Daily Mirror said: “a new generation is growing up wondering why we keep a military umbrella over a couple of thousand miles away- at the cost of £45000 a year for each of them- just because they want it

    ” this weeks referendum “yes” vote doesnt change the mad cap economics of colonialism ”

    Paul Rout ledge wrote this remarking upon falling levels of support for the Falklands in the UK.

  153. Martin woodhead on said:

    Cant find any trace of the article and majority of the mirrors views are pro falkland islands.
    Self determination trumps sucking up to argentina.

  154. well i suggest you look in the print edition, in Paul Routledge’s column.

    Yes, the Mirror is mainly populist on questions like this, but Routledge’s views obvioulsy represent a growing constituency that the Mirror is happy to give voice to.

  155. Martin woodhead on said:

    Guardian and rhe mirror always do this sort of thing niether are the majority or have much influence Uk gov poll gave 60% backng of military action to defend the islands.

  156. Manzil on said:

    Martin woodhead:
    Guardian and rhe mirror always do this sort of thing niether are the majority or have much influence Uk gov poll gave 60% backng of military action to defend the islands.

    Haha. Yeah, just wait. It suits Cameron now to be all gung-ho; let’s see what happens when the British state’s interests are actually damaged by sending millions to this protectorate and pissing off everyone who doesn’t have an English accent. Self-de-what?

  157. Martin woodhead on said:

    Er we spend 0.2% of the defence budget and get vast areas for field firing and low flying.
    The only people beng pissed off are argentinians who are self defeating chile and urguaguay say thank you very much for the extra cruise ship dockings.