By Brendan Oliver Bergh
Impunity Watch Reporter, South America
BUENOS AIRES, Argentina – What began last week as a simple diplomatic barrage of propaganda between Argentina and Great Britain has seemingly escalated between the two nations as the British have begun growing their armed garrison in support of the Falkland islands.
President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner reignited Argentina’s claim on the Falklands Islands with a strongly worded letter posted in British newspapers early last week. Whether she believed that the United Kingdom (UK) would budge is irrelevant as Prime Minister Cameron David immediately responded with a resounding NO, standing by their resolve to protect the Falklands, for as long as the islanders wished to remain a part of the UK.
Despite the simple diplomatic statement made by the Prime Minister, ‘The Daily Mail’, a popular British tabloid responded with scathing article in a Buenos Aires newspaper summed up with the with simple message “Hands Off!”
While most would think this simple exchange would be nothing new in the thirty years since the British-Argentinian War, there has been no real decision on with the Islanders Sovereignty. The Argentinians maintain a claim to the islands and an “end of colonialism”, The UK has maintained their position that they have a legitimate claim, and the backing of the islanders.
Many believe that oil is the main reasoning behind the Kircheners push. With the Argentinians economy at a decade low, with only 2% growth, a staggering inflation growth, wand large scale riots and work stoppages many believe that this new national push is a distraction from their domestic issues.
The Daily Mail article seems to have stirred up trouble, and individuals and business on both sides have taken the bait. Argentinians hurled insults and verbal abuse at cruise line passengers attempting to disembark at Buenos Aires, with many activist burning the Union “Jack” Flag. In response, numerous European cruise lines have stopped servicing the area harming the countries tourism.
While Britain already keeps a garrison of about 1,2000 troops, this increase has already been meet with a weary statement by President Kirchner “We ask Mr Cameron not to use our legitimate and peaceful claim … as an excuse to maintain the weapons industry,” citing the belief of Britain militarizing the South Atlantic.
Prime Minister Cameron responded with a statement concerning the Islanders, “They’re holding a referendum this year and I hope the president of Argentina will listen to that referendum and recognize it is for the Falkland Islanders to choose their future, and as long as they choose to stay with the United Kingdom they have my 100 per cent backing.”
For more information, please see:
Pagina 12 – Britain Will Send 150 Soldiers To The Falklands – 9 January 2013
Marti Noticias – London and Beunos Aires Again Battling Over Falklands – 9 January 2013
The Telegraph – Argentina Condemns David Cameron’s ‘military threats’ Over Falklands – 7 January 2013
The Telegraph – David Cameron: We Would Fight A Falklands Invasion – 6 January 2013
The Telegraph – Falklands: Argentines Abuse Cruise Line Passengers In Buenos Aires – 5 January 2013