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9/22/2017 12:11:25 AM
Posted: 8/3/2001 5:59:21 AM EDT
I came across an interesting website, [url]http://guest.xinet.com/ignacio/polsi342/falklands.html[/url], which tells of two important reasons why the Argentine defense of the Falkland Islands failed: 1) The invasion was launched three months ahead of schedule to counter political pressure against the Galtieri junta. As a result, the materials weren't ready to expand the Stanley airport and the winter weather didn't arrive in time to hamper the British response. 2) Only about 20% of the bombs dropped by Argentine aircraft actually exploded. If that figure had been 80%, the British navy might have been crippled. Of course, the Argentines made many other mistakes (such as underestimating Maggie Thatcher) but I haven't seen much attention given to those two factors before.
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 8:45:43 AM EDT
Link Posted: 8/3/2001 8:41:35 PM EDT
I have always wondered why Argentina never re-invaded. Great Britain is much more weak now. I can't imagine Tony Blair launching another armada.
Link Posted: 8/9/2001 8:36:33 PM EDT
I had a chance to read The Battle of the Falklands (I think that’s the name) and the book by the Harrier squadron commander. My conclusion is that the British tried to lose a number of different ways, but the Argentineans were SO bad that the British won anyway. The largest single factor was the poor Argentinean application of their aircraft delivered bombs. As was mentioned, a major percentage of them didn’t detonate due to the fusing problems. On the ground, the largest factor was the lack of quality of Argentine infantry resulting in a complete lack of regular patrols, and a decidedly inferior (American trained BTW) defensive scheme. Unbelievably, after the entire tactical reserve of ground forces was transferred at night to the Goose Green battlefield (unknown to the British, or course), the commander surrendered them. This “major battle” with “heavy casualties” between forces of a couple of thousand soldiers resulted in a couple of dozen dead British, and fewer than a hundred dead Argentineans. So, once the Argentineans reinforced, they quit. Unbelievable. The British also sent a bomber to conduct the longest bombing mission at that point in history, with the largest number of mid-air refuelings (13 I think). The result is that the Vulcan bomber crew was so fatigued, that they forgot to arm the bombs, and the raid resulted in so many small holes in the ground. It didn’t really matter though, the bombs missed the runway anyway. I could go on. But, after reading both of those books, I was very unimpressed with the British. I didn’t expect any better of the Argentines, although they were decidedly worse.
Link Posted: 8/10/2001 8:20:32 AM EDT
I too read a book about that war and was underwhelmed with the Brits. I remember on a couple of occassions they would send some of their vaunted commandos on a long march to an enemy position, get tired, and turn back when they were about 90% of the way there. Some of the stuff I have read about WWII kind of confirms in my mind that the Brits have some fairly pathetic and unagressive leadership. But the Argentines were much worse.
Link Posted: 8/11/2001 7:22:51 PM EDT
I disagree with you guys. Given Britain's small military, and long supply lines, I think they did a hell of a job. Their pilots were head over heels better than the Argentines. Scored 20+ kills in air to air combat, without a single loss of their own. You also would be hard pressed to find a better commando unit than the SAS. Their military record is unmatched, IMHO.
Link Posted: 8/11/2001 9:06:55 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/11/2001 9:05:20 PM EDT by Doug_in_CO]
Their record against broke-dick, nearly catatonic, third world nations is unsurpassed. However, that doesn’t mean they are a bunch of bad-asses. No nation of first-class fighter pilots would wait until they passed the equator to find out that their Blue Fox RADARs would have to be completely recalibrated to work in the other half of the world. Also, I would expect some other method of deploying chaff and flares other than jamming a package of them between the airframe and the ordinance, so that when the ordinance was dropped, the decoys would be dropped. Ingenious, but half-assed. As far as the SAS, special ops don’t win wars. They make wars cheaper for the victor. If special ops mean the difference between winning and losing, your winners are a lucky bunch.
Link Posted: 8/12/2001 11:49:35 AM EDT
Originally Posted By Doug_in_CO: Their record against broke-dick, nearly catatonic, third world nations is unsurpassed. However,
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Who have we fought? Panama, Grenada, Iraq... Damn, those are really some powerhouse countries, aren't they? Sorry, the only countries left to fight are third World countries. I never said that commando units won wars, but others questioned their ability. They have a much better record than the SEALs. Our guys are always getting killed- Panama, Grenada. Your arguments just don't make sense.
Link Posted: 8/12/2001 2:07:41 PM EDT
Nobody questioned the individual competence of the SAS soldiers, or the combat capability of the Royal Marines or Paras for that matter. What is obvious to anyone who has read up on the matter is that the decision-making capability of the British military sucked so badly that they should have lost. In my opinion, if the British Royal Marines and Paras weren’t so good, the British would certainly have lost. The problem of competence relates specifically to the ability of commanders to make good tactical decisions, and for planners to provide the adequate equipment to the people in the field. The British did win. But, in a number of situations, a British loss would have doomed the entire operation. One simple example is the CAP provided by the Sea Harriers. If you take into account the number of aircraft required to run a 24-hour air patrol (including aircraft down for maintenance, aircraft being refueled or rearmed, etc.), they had exactly the number of planes necessary for the task. If they had lost one aircraft, there would have had a gap in the CAP. Without a guaranteed CAP, the armada commanders were not interested in continuing the operation. In addition, the CAP only had ability to track aircraft out to 20 miles, and engage them with AIM-9L missiles. The result was successful Exocet attacks against British shipping. If a carrier had been hit instead of one of the state of the art air-defense ships, the entire operation would have been over.
Link Posted: 8/13/2001 5:43:29 AM EDT
Their pilots were head over heels better than the Argentines. Scored 20+ kills in air to air combat, without a single loss of their own.
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True, but there's more to the story: 1) The Argentine planes were based on the mainland and had to use most of their fuel flying out to the islands and back. As a result, they didn't have much opportunity to use their superior speed. 2) The Brits had better air-to-air missiles.
Link Posted: 8/13/2001 10:48:35 AM EDT
Dont forget that the US backed the Brits heavily with intelligence, satellite data, and tanker support up to the warzone. I seem to recall we gave them those AIM9L all-aspect missiles just before the armada left Britain, but I have been wrong before. These provided a huge advantage to the Brits over the older sidewinders used by the Argies that homed in from the rear of the target aircraft. I ate alot of crow in highschool when I was the only guy in our government class that insisted the Brits did not have the horsepower left to retake the islands.
Link Posted: 8/13/2001 2:15:19 PM EDT
Originally Posted By Mach1: Who have we fought? Panama, Grenada, Iraq... Damn, those are really some powerhouse countries, aren't they? Sorry, the only countries left to fight are third World countries. I never said that commando units won wars, but others questioned their ability. They have a much better record than the SEALs. Our guys are always getting killed- Panama, Grenada. Your arguments just don't make sense.
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Our SEALs performed well in 'nam. In Panama and Grenada, they were in situations that larger forces should have been handling. I'm not sure that SAS, SBS, and the Paras really have a better track record then our guys. They have had some clusterfucks in Northern Ireland. You have to keep in mind that special ops is a serious crap game. At Entebbe, one of the Israeli planes had a tire come within 2 m of a large crack in the runway, in other words it was that close to being a clusterfuck. One of the finest (IMHO) post-WW2 special ops was the attempted rescue of American POWs at Son Tay. It was a well run raid, but the CIA hadn't bothered to tell the army that the POWs had been previously moved.
Link Posted: 8/16/2001 7:00:11 PM EDT
This may sound like a stupid question but what was all the fighting in the Falklands about? Were the Falklands Islands? Six
Link Posted: 8/17/2001 5:14:09 AM EDT
The Falklands are a group of small islands in the South Atlantic, about 300 miles east of Argentina. After being claimed and settled by several different powers, the Falklands became a British possession in 1833. Argentina invaded in 1982. The Falklands are not a particularly valuable piece of real estate, but control of the islands was an important point of national pride to both sides in the war. Here's a link for more info: [url]http://www.falklands.gov.fk/1.htm[/url]
Link Posted: 8/17/2001 11:06:47 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 8/17/2001 11:02:44 AM EDT by medicjim]
I can see it happening in Argentina...but in GB, I wouldn't think it wouldn't go over to well to tell a widow "your husband was killed for a worthless piece of land thousands of miles from here............over PRIDE"
Link Posted: 8/17/2001 12:45:28 PM EDT
Then again, would you want to say, "Your husband died for a bunch of sheep and penguins"?
Link Posted: 8/18/2001 10:16:10 PM EDT
I don't think it would be any different for the loved ones who's sons/husbands/brothers lost their lives in Vietnam, Grenada, Panama, etc... If your a soldier, that's the chance you take.
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