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The war memorial

Friday, May 4th 2012

On top of Sappers Hill stands a memorial to the British who died in the final, fierce fight for Stanley. I watched the sun set from there on my last night in the Falklands, and thought again about the madness of war and the hundreds of people who died here thirty years ago. A lot of the people I'd met had lived through the occupation of the islands. On Saunders, the Argentinians had never landed but the residents there watched as they flew overhead and sailed past. A hundred islanders had been held hostage in Goose Green. And I'd met someone whose aunt had been one of the three islanders killed in the war, hit by a British shell during the battle for Stanley. And all for islands so bleak and desolate that they are barely even populated outside Stanley.

I think that the government of the Falklands should pay all the costs for any Argentinian who wants to visit these islands. I cannot seriously imagine that many would go home still believing that there was any sense in Argentina claiming them.

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