Faith Can Move Mountains... But Dynamite Works Better

Monday, March 18, 2013

Don't Cry For Me Argentina, The Truth Is I Never Liked You

While the Roman Catholic conclave was going on last week, drawing the world's attention, something else of note happened at the far edges of the world. The Falkland Islands, a south Atlantic outpost of the British people, held a referendum to remain a British territory. The islands, which thirty years ago saw a war between Britain and Argentina after the latter invaded, have long been an issue of dispute between the Argentinians and the British. The 1982 war still sticks in the proverbial craw of the Argentinians. Getting your ass thoroughly kicked will do that.

The vote was nearly unanimous in favour, which annoyed the Argentinian government to no end. They cried foul, claimed vote rigging. Having had given the impression they would abide by the will of the islanders, the Argentinians nonetheless insist that the Malvinas, as they call them, are being held by piracy, that the islands were hijacked, that they- and the energy and resource rights around them- are rightful property of the Argentinian people. In short, they decided to throw a temper tantrum.

From the writer's point of view, the subject draws my attention. I've been fascinated by this strange place for years, perhaps because it's one of those places that I don't understand. That's a draw to me. What is it about this place that triggered a war? I'd love to see the islands for myself, to explore the place, and understand it close up.

And as a writer, this ongoing story inspires me. I've speculated on the notion of writing antagonists into a book, a family of Germans who flee to South America in the dying days of the Second World War, still holding onto their fascist beliefs over the decades, hiding it beneath a veneer of respectability. Plenty of Nazis did manage to sneak away to South America, after all, including Argentina, after the war. Writing in a family of Nazis in the current day wouldn't be that difficult a prospect, particularly a family with close ties to the government in Buenos Aires, and their eyes on the Falklands.

Well, Argentina, I think we need to have a word. Come on over here, and we'll talk in private, just you and I. No need for the other countries to hear you get dressed down.

I think you need to let it go. Yes, I know, you've had your heart set on the Falklands for many a season, and how can I blame you? They're beautiful and inviting in their own way. All of that potential natural gas and offshore oil must be tempting. But it's not going to do you any good. They've told you they don't want to go steady. They've told you in as polite a way as possible that if you don't leave them alone, they'll issue a restraining order against you.

Now, I know, you're thinking if you just get them away from the burly British they've been going steady with, if you just get a chance to talk to them alone, you might stand a chance. You're figuring, hey, if we stand outside their window with a boom box and a puppy dog look, we might get a chance with our beloved Maldives. I'm sorry, but that only works in the movies. Or so I imagine. I've never actually seen that movie.

It's time to move on with your life. Forget the Falklands. They're not going to change their mind. They're not in the least bit interested in you. Invading them did leave them with a long memory after all. They're trying to be as polite as possible, but you're starting to grate on their nerves.

You need to rethink your life. Maybe get a new hobby. Pay attention to soccer. For some reason you seem to like that sport, and it'll take your minds off the referendum. Stalking the Falklands, insisting that you belong together, is only going to get you in trouble. Particularly with that British bloke they've been seeing. Remember what happened last time? Well, that'll happen again if you get uppity.

So for now, you'll have to tango amongst yourselves. The Falklands aren't interested in dancing. At least not with you.

Oh, don't start crying. You really want Chile to see you crying? You think they won't take advantage of that the first chance they get?


  1. I don't know anything about the place but your idea for a book sounds really interesting!

  2. Argentina has bigger issues, after all. Eva Peron. Madonna playing Eva Peron. That kind of embarrassment doesn't go away. Ever.

  3. I, too, would like to visit the Falklands. Haven't a clue why except that it has a rugged image that appeals. The vote was overwhelmingly unanimous to remain with Britain. I would hope that would settle the matter.

  4. The people are not really part of Argentina. They don't even speak the language. Love the concept of the book, but someone in the family should renounce the doctrine. I know, it's your story.

  5. Hubby's ship was blown up by the Argentines in the Falklands war...he went to war to save the Falkland islanders from Argentine rule...we are not enamoured by Ms Argentina's posturing.
    Jane x

  6. I still remember the war announced in newspapers when I was in school. It still seems strange to me to this day. That is a gem of an idea, I'm sure you could find great material on real-life families.

  7. the argies call them the malvinas..
    the argie presifent is disrespecting her soldiers who died trying to take the islands . also thier families
    once you try by force and loose ... you have lost .. history up to then donent count antmore . the argies LOST ...END OF.
    she is also making herself look very stupid trying to get the new pope.
    involved ... if he is a true christian ... he will consider his neighbours plight.
    DONT GET INVOLVED PAPA it will end in more tears ... for gods sake tell christina k . to Shut .... ..... up !!!!
    how sad argentina is ... sad sad sad .
    and if they were nice to us tbey might get some shipping deals ... trade .. engineering jobs etc.
    too late matey ... we got your number. now go sulk .

  8. i.m wondering .. how many catholics are on the falkland islands.
    if you there let us know... how you feel

  9. Do it William, there could be quite a story here, as long as Madonna isn't in the movie version of your book :)

  10. I love the book idea !
    Great post today.

    cheers, parsnip

  11. Aw, William! That's a great plot! Go for it!

    My concern is that since Margaret Thatcher is gone, the Argentines may decide to chance trying it against the current PM! Don't know if he can measure up!

  12. This is a prime example of why YOU write and I take photographs. Great post W.

  13. No means no, Argentina. Where'd I put my pepper spray?

  14. @Deb: thanks!

    @Norma: Madonna humiliates whereever she goes!

    @Kittie: it's not on the list of places to see, and I think that's why it appeals to me.

    @Mari: at the moment, the concept's floating around in my head, gradually taking shape. Not sure where it'll go.

    @Eve: one hopes!

    @Jane and Chris: I recall your mentioning the Falklands connection...

    @Lulu: I'm sure there's a wealth of information out there!

    @Rob: I find it ironic that she cozies up to the new Pope, a guy she's despised for years.

    @Grace: since I can't stand Madonna, no worries about that!

    @Norma: thank you!

    @Parsnip: thanks!

    @Cheryl: we shall see...

    @Virginia: thanks!

    @Karla: I think lots of people are reaching for the pepper spray...

  15. It's always fascinating to me how politics seems to bring out an overall "personality" for each country.

  16. My post didn't stick as I suspected. But I already told you I loved this post.

    Shared and all that good stuff.

    Hugs and chocolate,

  17. Okay, this is totally not the point of your post, but how good was Better Off Dead? I want my two dollars! LOL

  18. @A: and sometimes that personality is unpleasant!

    @Shelly: thank you!

    @Kelly: It was a good one. Haven't seen it in years, but enjoyed it thoroughly!

  19. Well, my knowledge of geography is the pits (that's 70s slang for awful or worse). So my chances of making an educated or intelligent response to this post is nil, or next to nothing. However, thanks for increasing my knowledge of the Falklands.

  20. And hey, why is everybody dissing Madonna? I mean, I wouldn't hold her up as a personal role model, but if somebody offered me her voice, I'd take it.

  21. @Christine: you're most welcome. And I suspect everyone disses Madonna because of her personality....


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