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Banner, bakery, bus, library… Four reminders of the Falklands/Malvinas

The Falklands (known in Argentina as Islas Malvinas or Las Malvinas) are an archipelago, roughly the size of Wales, largely sheep farms, about 550 kilometres east of the South American mainland. They never had an indigenous human population, though there were, and still are, plenty of penguins.

In 1982, the United Kingdom and Argentina fought a war over them. Argentina lost, but continues to claim sovereignty over the islands.

I’ve been to the United Kingdom six times since. I saw an exhibition about the conflict at the Imperial War Museum, went to Falkland House in Westminster, and heard a throwaway line at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. That’s about the only evidence I had of the islands’ existence in all that time.

But in my six trips to Argentina, I’ve been constantly reminded of Las Malvinas. Here are four examples.

argentina falklands campamento 5
Plaza de Mayo, the main square of Buenos Aires. ‘The Malvinas were, are and will be Argentine.’

 

argentina falklands biblioteca popular
A public library called ‘Argentine Malvinas’ in a small town on the main island of Tierra del Fuego. And not far from a tasty bakery.

 

argentina falklands ice cream
An ice cream shop in Buenos Aires.

 

argentina falklands bus 1
A bus in the seaside resort of Mar del Plata, with Mother Teresa and Pope John Paul II on one side…

 

argentina falklands bus 2
… and Sergeant Mario ‘Perro’ Cisnero, who died in the war, on the other. The heading says ‘Argentina has Heroes’.

 

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Michael from Perth

A unique view of the strange and spectacular world through the eyes of Michael from Perth