Maybe used the wrong words. I didn't mean small as in 'small' but weak and perhaps 'immature' rather than 'pathetic' maybe a better phrase. I'll leave it at that - don't want to mess up happyslappers thread.
Uruguay doesn´t care much about the islands, (we were neutral in 1982) but we do care about having the best relationship possible with Argentina because is an important market for our products. If it means not receveing british warships to keep Argentina happy, so be it. Look at a map, we don´t have much room for maneuver here.
The islanders always have been welcomed here for whatever they need and always will be.
Gents, unfortunately this is how it goes in South America. It's silly, it's puerile, and it's pointless... but it's the way things are done.
The guys onboard Gloucester will be pretty pleased, it means that they'll probably get a run ashore in Rio instead.... and Jack loves Rio!
There's some shifting patterns and emerging controversies regards maritime access in the region, mainly due to some ridiculous policies by Argentina. Chief among them being Decree 256, which has recently been imposed by Argentina and is a hair's whisker from being a blockade.
Of far more significance to the Gloucester story, is another which has emerged over the past couple of days, whereby a Spanish flagged trawler has been denied the right of innocent passage through Argentina's EEZ. This is illegal, and it will be interesting to see what the Spanish response will be. This is the first time the Argentine maritime authorities have actually plucked up the guts to carry out their threats. Ultimately, the big loser will be Argentina, as it loses both credibility and trade. Uruguay is the second loser, being that it depends on trade through the Argentine EEZ also. Meanwhile, the Falklands is enjoying a bumper season, is expanding it's port facilities, and is back in the public consciousness.
We live in interesting times.
Here's a link to the Spanish trawler story for those interested.
A brief report from the time it was approves in Argentina, here.
In a nutshell, Argentina demands that any vessel travelling to or from the Falkands should first seek permission from the Argentine Naval Prefecture (i.e. Coastguard). It has no authority, under international law, to do this. The vast majority of vessels simply flout this 'law', and sail to and from the islands as they please. There have been a couple of cases now, most notably the inpounding of a vessel they claim was connected to the Falklands' oil exploration activities (I think it was called Thor Leader), and now this incident with the Spanish trawler. They tend to be grand gestures, from afar, because they know that attempting to intercept a vessel, particularly the so far untouched British/FI fishing and merchant fleets, would very quickly draw the attention of a pusser's grey.
What's the big deal? A fundamental law of the sea, as set out in UNCLOS, is the Right of Innocent Passage. This means a vessel must not be impeded by an adjacent state, unless it represents a direct threat to that adjacent state. By demanding that any vessel visiting the Falklands should seek prior permission from Argentina, and denying them access to it's waters if they do not comply, Argentina is in breach of this law to which it is a signatory. Essentially it is trying to strangle the islands, force trade to become preclusively expensive, and intimidate visitors into trading somewhere else. A very small step from this is a blockade, where Argentina physically impedes transit to and from the islands. This is one of very few scenarios which is still internationally recognised as an act of war.
Here´s the Decree text, from a very reliable legal source. They are in spanish: I post the original link, and you guys use the translator of your choice, rather than uploading a translated article.
As always, if any doubt, pm me.
-In Argentina Laws are passed by the Federal Congress (for the whole country and places under federal jurisdiction) or province legislatures (good in provinces only).
-Those laws are usualy complemented / completed / organized by Decrees. Sometimes, the federal gov. has authority to enact some decrees that regulates special subjects, like in this case.
- Furthermore, some of those laws or decrees, depending on the case, need to be complemented / completed / organized by special provisiones, issued by administrative organs.
I suppose this is the right time for the Argentinians to test the waters so to speak. So much talk of the dreaded report that will tell us just how much will our armed forces be butchered to support our governments miss guided EU mission, supporting god knows how many immigrants who are fighting our own unemployed for very few places and god knows what other nightmares that the government have gotten us into.
I suppose that the Argentinians are looking at the prospect of oil in the region just as much as we are, we need the oil to secure another British Oil field other than the North Sea. The Argentinians need it because the government is even worse than ours and sadly every time the government in that country needs the public to be distracted, they historically always bring up the Falklands, the chance to get their own oil resource is just a bonus of the whole endeavor. I will be honest I would be interested to see it kick off, I know that they have been training their Marines with the US recently and their Naval air arm have been training with the USN.
Sadly any future endeavor from the Argentinians will post on which side of the special relationship the US really sits.
We're rapidly drifting off topic here, so I'll try to keep it brief.
Originally Posted by Barracuda7
pointless?... Cmon men its how its done everywhere in the world. its all interest. They need to have a good relation with they neighbourg Argentina.
That's exactly what is failing to happen. A grand yet apparently impulsive gesture is not conducive to serious relationship building. Until a few hours ago, Uruguay was perfectly happy for a British warship to dock in Montevideo... so clearly there's an unsteadiness on Uruguay's part as to exactly which post it wants to lean on. Given the recent history with Argentina, and the undercurrent of discord across Mercosur, who can blame them.
The irony is that the same policy they are complicit in supporting is costing them badly. A significant part of the port of Montevideo's trade is with the Falklands, or involves transiting Falklands' EEZ. That trade is now going elsewhere en-masse, to the extreme detriment of certain commercial sectors within the Port. It's the same story in Chile. Be in no doubt, Argentina is damaging itself and it's neighbours far more than it is damaging the Falklands. On a provincial and local level, there is great resentment in Chile and Uruguay over that, and it's a matter of time before Timerman get's used to hearing the word ''no'' as his neighbours become restless.
Originally Posted by oscarni
I suppose this is the right time for the Argentinians to test the waters so to speak....
I suppose that the Argentinians are looking at the prospect of oil in the region just as much as we are, we need the oil to secure another British Oil field other than the North Sea.
Certainly many malvinists will be reading about the SDSR with interest, and perhaps a wry smile. But the reality is that we spend less than a half of one percent of the defence budget defending the Falklands, and yet that token force could probably prevail against the entire Argentine military. Even a significant weakening of the British military would not alter the day-to-day balance of power in the South Atlantic.
Argentina has already announced that it is pressing ahead with it's own oil exploration programme (partly run by BP, ironically), which will involve deepwater rigs operating just outside the Falklands' EEZ. Good luck to them, as far as I'm concerned.
There's a big difference between the bail-out the North Sea fields offered in the 80's recession, and what the discoveries (which last week were confirmed as commercially viable) being made off the Falklands; the North Sea operators buy licenses from the UK Government, and pay taxes directly to them... which isn't the case in the Falklands. They buy licenses off the Falkland Islands Government, pay taxes to the FIG, none of which is forwarded to the UK Government.
The benefit to the UK tax-payer comes in the negligible form of the FIG paying for more of it's own defence, and playing a more independant role in representing itself abroad (which are pennies, in the grand scheme of things), and in taxes gained from the operators which thus far are almost exclusively London-based firms (with the exception of BHP Billiton which is both London and Melbourne based). So it's not quite the money-spinner that many would like to believe.... unless you happen to have investments in the Falklands themselves.
Last edited by happyslapper; 09-22-2010 at 06:48 AM.
Reason: meant Timerman, not Taiana