A daily blog on the thrills, spills, and frequent absurdities of the world's one and only 'non-imperial empire' - as Barroso himself called it - the European Union.

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Friday, 17 February 2012

Falklands Are a 'Colony?' Tell that to the Falklanders

The Falkland Islanders don't want to be sold out by their fellow citizens.

Much has been made of Sean Penn's latest verbal escapade, and there's not much more that can be done, other than mentioning this. I just thought I'd bring you all some good news from the South Atlantic that flies in the face of Argentina's pretensions: the people of the Falkland Islands have held a voluntary procession along the islands' main thoroughfare, waving British flags and calling for their UN-enshrined right to self-determination to be respected, by both world leaders and right-on celebrities alike. One local, noting that the inhabitants donated several pounds per person to the Haiti earthquake fund which Sean Penn was deeply involved with, deliciously told told the American celebrity - known for his world around the world - that 'we have rights too.'

British people were the first to permanently settle on the islands, and, barring brief interludes of abandonment or conquest, the islands have been British for all of their recorded history. Aside from some in a small community of Chilean citizens (who held a similar demonstration to declare their support of the UK), almost all of the residents have British passports and full British citizenship. Their simple gesture proves at a stroke not only that the usual accusations of colonialism and jingoism are wrong, but that to call for their handing over to Argentina is to set yourself against the democratic will of the people.


  1. Hear, hear.

    I believe the colony on the Falkland Islands was established some years before Argentina was even recognised as a country.

  2. Wrong and untrue. The british were not the first in discover the islands. They were not the first to claim them. They were not the first to populate them and certainly they were not the first in stablish a permanent population.
    The first to discover the islands was Magellan. The first incontrovertible sighting was by Holland's Sebald de Weerdt in 1600. The first to claim the islands was Boungaville for the french king in 1764 stablishing the first colony Fort St. Louis. The french recognized spanish sovereignty and ceded the fort and the colony to Spain in 1767.
    The british left in 1774 and from then until 1833 several spanish and argentine administration governed the islands alone and without protest from the british.
    In 1833 the british returned, expelling the argentines and ocupying the islands by force, controling its population and economy through the falklands islands company and denying argentine citizens to stablish and reside in Malvinas.