Chapter

Defending the Nation: the Falklands

Nigel D. White

in Democracy goes to War

Published in print June 2009 | ISBN: 9780199218592
Published online September 2009 | e-ISBN: 9780191705595 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199218592.003.0008
 Defending the Nation: the Falklands

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Despite the growing institutionalization and internationalization of military operations, the classical unilateral military action must not be forgotten. The invasion of the Falklands/Malvinas islands by Argentina in 1982 led to a huge British military operation to recapture them. Despite being based on the inherent right of a sovereign state to defend itself from attack, the operation attracted considerable debate both domestically and internationally. This chapter explores the political and legal dynamics that fuelled that debate. It considers whether the Falklands did represent a post-Second World War highpoint of electoral and political support for a military operation as is commonly assumed. Did parliament play any critical role, either in the decision to send the Task Force or in the conduct of the war? Was the fact that there was a clear international legal basis for the operation in the face of external aggression a factor in determining the level of electoral and political support?

Keywords: self-defence; sovereignty; territorial dispute; self-determination; Belgrano; Falklands; Task Force

Chapter.  12425 words. 

Subjects: Human Rights and Immigration

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