Why was Britain still selling arms to the fascist Argentine junta just four days before the invasion?
Thatcher and Galtieri’s rousing, far-flung 1982 face-off was a controlled show. One for which the participating nations and other interested countries had been waiting several decades. When the balloon finally went up, impatient arms dealers and senior military figures got what they’d been craving; the green light to let fly – for real – with the latest tested, but unproven weapons.
Powerful, vested interests were served as weapons markets received a massive shot in the arm. How much more proof do we need that merciless, uncaring, unadulterated greed is an ever-present influence?
Prior to the Falklands Conflict, in fact just four days before the invasion, Thatcher had been up to her eyes in reckless arms deals with her friends in the Argentine Junta, helping General Galtieri to prepare for and counter any ‘unforeseen’ threat that might just arise.
Was it a coincidence that her trading partner had been getting what his heart desired from Mrs T, before storming into Port Stanley when he felt fully equipped?
So behind our backs, Thatcher had been securing secret arms deals - news of which took decades to emerge - with a volatile, right-wing junta. One that had spent many years torturing and disappearing tens of thousands of its own law-abiding citizens.
40, 50, 60 years on, it’s likely many of the missing people were murdered by death squads, and now occupy shallow, unmarked graves. They’ll never be seen or heard from again. Thatcher quite carefully stayed mute on this, and chose not to criticise or embarrass the rogue governments of the United States, Argentina, Chile, Uruguay and Brazil for their prolonged involvement in these extra-judicial atrocities.
Her silence made her a willing associate to countless brutal murders.