Abandon Ship

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21 July 2021
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Paul Brown looks at the ships that went down during the Falklands War.

The Falklands War was not only a test of modern ships, fighters and bombers, missiles, defence systems and troops, it was also responsible for changing the political landscape. The Navy had been lined up for savage cuts by John Nott, Conservative Defence Minister, with even the brand new aircraft carrier, Invincible, to be sold off to the Australians. On 2 April 1982, the same day that shipyard workers received their redundancy notices, Argentina invaded. Those cutbacks were scrapped as a fleet was assembled to take the Islands back, and to save Margaret Thatcher’s leadership. Paul Brown has pieced together various reports, first hand histories and various Freedom of Information requests, to come up with this account of the sinking of the Argentine Belgrano and the six British ships. Even now, some details are still classified, as the decision made little military sense, but carried enormous political ramifications.

There’s a history of what provoked the invasion, then each ship gets a chapter on its destruction – so it isn’t an overall guide to the Falklands War, but it is a very detailed look into these elements of it. From the politics in London to the people in the firing line, this is a well considered look into how and why each ship was lost.

  • Osprey Publishing
  • ISBN 978-1-4728-4643-3
  • 324 pages. Hardback. £20

 

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