When you're in a hole, Sean, stop digging. His attempt to return the to Falklands-Malvinas debate in Thursday's Grauniad is as entertaining as his previous weighing-in on this matter.
He starts as he means to continue:
...and despite our world's recent and evolving lessons of cultural sensitivity and economic equitability, the UK has refused to return to diplomatic efforts regarding the status of UK and Argentinian claims to the Malvinas Islands, commonly referred to as the Falkland Islands.I'm curious what he thinks "economic equitability" means in this context: the UK should give the Falklands to Argentina because the UK is rich and Argentina is poor? Interesting.
...any lack of will to re-engage is a clear exploitation of losses already suffered. It is dismissive of a country and continent whose sacrifices and dignity have too long been neglected.Yes, we appear to have a theme developing here; don't the poor down-trodden Argentines deserve a break? A charitable donation of the Falklands would be just the ticket.
He does, however, seem to have a bee in his bonnet about the UK/USA involvement with Chile:
The UK and General Augusto Pinochet (with ultimately timid support from the US) along with the diversionary invasion by the former Argentinian regime, did a fine job of leaving little room for that argument [that the Falklanders should be deported] on today's world stage.I'm not entirely sure what connection he thinks Pinochet has here. After all, it was the UK who ended up detaining the former General in an attempt to have him tried for human rights violations. What's his point?
And William is apparently spear-heading a military build-up:
With the deployment of the prince, whose task is helicopter search and rescue missions from an island colony with a population of about 3,000, there is the automatic deployment of warships.I've news for you, Sean my old chum, warships have their own helicopters. They don't need land-based SAR such as that provided by F/Lt. W. Wales's Sea King. SAR supports the fishing, recreational and commercial shipping around the islands. Now if Captain H. Wales were to turn up in his personal whirlybird, Sean may have a point; I'd certainly not be keen to be an Argentine soldier facing the pointy end of one of those...
CiF commentater davidabsalom identifies an omission in Mr. Penn's argument:
"It is difficult to imagine that there is no correlation between the likely discovery of offshore oil reserves and the message of pre-emptive intimidation being sent by the UK to Argentina."
Equally difficult to imagine that there is no correlation between the likely discovery of offshore oil reserves and attempts by Argentina to intimidate the 3,000 residents of the Falklands by refusing their ships access to Argentinian ports. Or many other South American ports thanks to Argentina's extensive diplomatic efforts with its neighbours.
In one breath Sean supports the right of Falklanders to self-determination, and in another bemoans the breaking-off of diplomatic efforts to resolve the islands' status. Surely he should take the obvious cause and support a referendum by islanders to determine which nation they want to be a part of?