Military AircrewA forum for the professionals who fly the non-civilian hardware, and the backroom boys and girls without whom nothing would leave the ground. Army, Navy and Airforces of the World, all equally welcome here.
what i'm say is there are 3 issues that conflate and produce a picture, and we should be wary about believing that the picture they paint to us is the same picture that Mrs Kirchner sees.
1. the actual, technical correlation of forces.
2. the political, subjective decisions she makes about the capability of our forces in situ, our ability to increace those forces, our willingness to increace those forces, and our willingness to re-inforce without 100% proof that a threat is developing.
3. the political, subjective decisions she makes about her chances political survival without a grand gesture/successful attack.
we also, imv, need to be careful about judging the success of our deterant on the basis that there has not been an attempt to re-take/attack the islands - its possible that there has not been any serious thought since the 1982 war within the Argentine body politic of military action, and so the concept of deterence hasn't really been tested. its also worth rembering that our deterence posture has changed - since 1982 we've said that if you attempt to invade we'll give you a shoeing, and even if you're succesful we'll sail down in our carriers and we'll give you another shoeing and take them back.
now however thats changed - we now say 'certainly we'll give you a shoeing if you try to invade, but if you do succeed, you can keep them'. its worth thinking about.
As Argentinian claims see to be based on proximity and on previous Spanish ownership, perhaps we could reclaim Calais. It was ruled by an English King for some considerable time, and is very close to Dover.
While we're here talking about history, who really are the real owners of Britain, the Vikings, Normans, Saxons... ? What a conundrum history can be. I say lets figure this out and give it back to their rightful owners.
Hundreds of protesters marched on the British embassy in Buenos Aires on Monday and launched Molotov cocktails in street clashes with police as Argentina commemorated the 30th anniversary of the Falklands War.
Four officers were injured as a group of around 200 people broke off from a peaceful rally, attended by 2,000 protesters from left-wing movements who called for the UK to give up sovereignty of the Falklands and branded the British as “pirates”.
I fear that this "silliness"of Ms Kurchner is beginning to have it's own momentum. Shortly she will have painted herself and by her rhetoric the UK into a corner. There reaches a point in any argument where the words stop and the primeval "put up or shut up" takes over. Me thinks a "preplanned" rotation of forces on the FI takes place, air, sea and ground. Thus for the period of handover a doubling of assets and a very strong BACK OFF message gets sent to BA and the warmongering crazy lady.
Might be a good idea to do a very well pubilcised (after they land at MPC of course) no notice Crab Stunt (deployment exercise to people in the real world) by a C-17, an E-3, a Few GR4's and Tiffys carrying the aformentioned Stormshadow/PWII/PWIV/Brimstone just to remind the Argies of the fact. Would shut Sharky and Woodward up as well (in fact worth doing just for the latter!!!).
This issue is quite clearly not going to be resolved by the 'My gun is bigger than your gun' type mentality.
The pen has ALWAYS been mightier than the sword and this issue needs wise people writing wise words. We need to somehow educate those that see Great Britain as being a colonial nation that is occupying a small country. We need to let the World see that the population of the Falkland islands are free to vote for their own destiny, it is solely down to those people to have the final say.
If we start throwing more and more men, women and hardware onto those islands then what type of image does that send out to those that claim we are a colonial people that rule over the proud people of those islands.
Jaw, jaw should trump war, war
a C-17, an E-3, a Few GR4's and Tiffys carrying the aformentioned Stormshadow/PWII/PWIV/Brimstone just to remind the Argies of the fact. Would shut Sharky and Woodward up as well
Would it? Where would we get those aircraft from and what operation would suffer if they were deployed? We can all mock those two individuals but they have a RIGHT to be listened to.
the problem is not one of information, its one of people not being interested in information.
the information that the FI is a self-governing territory that is entirely happy with its ciurrent status is out there, all verified by numerous independant media organisations, it has its own media that report the goings on within the islands and the political/social debates that take place there - all of which are immediately accessable to anyone who'se interested. unfortunately there are large numbers of Argentines who either don't believe it, or just don't care, and who believe that their 'rights' trump self-determination.
I got the impression from her speech yesterday that she was backing off on the rhetoric a little. Commentators were suggesting that foreign ambassadorial presence at the Ushuaia ceremony would indicate what effect her rhetoric is having on the continent - fewer ambassadors would suggest the continent was growing tired of her and that she was starting to go too far.
i don't believe there is a 'good' course of action available, there are merely a number of crap options with differing downsides.
i do not believe that any real headway can be made into the Argentine political psyche, i think we just have to live with the fact that they will always want the Islands, and that any Argentine politician who ramps up the rhetoric will be rewarded electorally.
given that, we have three options - to maintain a minimum defence that doesn't offend the other LA nations, and to attempt to use economics and diplomacy to ensure that LA solidarity on this issue stays as a very thin concept.
to ramp up the defence and running costs of the islands to the extent where all of LA could be based at Rio Gallagos and they'd still never get within 100 miles.
to give up the Islanders to independance and the rather shaky 'protection' of the UN.
Option 1 is preferable, but it carries risks - the diplomacy may not work, and the 'token' defence may have to be so 'token' in order to be friends with the other LA countries that the Argentines are able to get through it.
Option 2 works, but is hellishly expensive, and it probably means cutting off ourselves - and the EU - from LA and most importantly Brazil, while that situation remains.
Option 3 is pretty rubbish, it solves our problem, but i don't think the Islanders will feel that safe...
personally, i'd go for somewhere between 1 and 2, with 2 being the default option. do i believe that Brazil will go to economic war with the EU to make Argentina feel good? no, i don't, but i also don't underestimate how politically dominant Brazil would be within LA if it went hardline on this issue in the name of 'regional solidarity'.
is perhaps the big lesson from history is that when you don't buy enough shoe for the size of your feet, you're going to have a painful walk to the shops?
our defence posture problems are not, imv, caused by the shape of that defence posture or by the individual procurement/doctrinal decisions within it, they're caused by not providing enough money to pay for it.