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The Falklands War diary, 25 years later.

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  • The Falklands War diary, 25 years later.

    April 2nd 1982

    0430hrs
    150 men from the Argentinian Buzo Tactico(special forces) land by helicopter at Mullet Creek, three miles south west of the Islands capital, Port Stanley. This was followed by the landing of over 1000 more troops and Marines. By 0930 the small British garrison defending the island, Naval Party 8901, consisting of 68 Royal Marines and 12 sailors from the Ice Patrol ship HMS Endurance, had surrendered.
    The Buzo Tactico begun their attack on the island at the Moody Brook barracks, hoping to catch the Garrison(which was spread out around the east of the Harbour) in their beds, using Submachine gun, Fragmentation and Phosporous grenades. Some of the Royal Marines retreated back to Government House, and held out there until the arrival of Argentinian Amtracks,From the "Cabo San Antonio" and the 2nd Marine Infantry Battalion whose weapons had greater range than the SLRs of the Royal Marines. Three Argentinians were killed at Government House, including Captain de Fregato Pedro Edgardo Giachino,Leader of the"Marine Tactical Divers", as the Special forces were referred to. More were killed when One of the Amtracks was struck by a LAW 66, and more again when a landing Craft was struck by a round from a Carl Gustav 84mm anti Tank weapon. By the time Governer Rex Hunt ordered the Royal Marines to Cease Fire at 0925 an estimate of 20 to 30 Argentinians lay dead with no British Casualties.
    The New Argentinian Governer of the Islands, General Osvaldo Garcia, announced to the islanders the change in Authority in the Malvinas, Georgia del Sur y Sandwich del Sur.
    ARA Guerrico and Bahia Parasio were in the Vicinity of South Georgia, Having Landed 100 Argentinian Marines at the small whaling station at Leith on the 25/26th of March. However bad weather prevented them from gaining a simultaneous foothold on the Island. 22 men of the Royal Marines Prepared their defences in anticipation of the Argentine arrival at Grytviken.


    Catch-22 says they have a right to do anything we can't stop them from doing.

  • #2
    Lots of inaccuracies.

    The Marines on the Falklands consisted of NP8901 and the previous NP. It was not one "Troop" but two which were amalgamated together to form one group. 67 Marine made up this force. Another ex-marine, then resident in Stanley, was "re-activated". They were also joined by sailors from the HMS Endurance and the FIDF. The FIDF did not play a major part and were used mostly as support troops and scouts, and were quickly captured, often without resistance. In their defence, it was like pitting the FCA of 1980 against the USMC of 2000. Many even lacked weapons.

    Major Noott was technically commander of the ongoing NP8901 but handed command over to Major Norman who was senior and also knew the ground.

    British forces were arrayed to defend against an attack from the airport which they expected to be captured first. The Buzo Tactico Commando (Argentinian Marine commandos) attack on the Moody Brook barracks came from the rear of the British and made Maj. Norman question the correctness of defending against an attack from the airport. The fight for Govt Buildings started soon after but Norman decided against redeploying his forces - correctly so.

    The Argentinian Amtrac that was hit by a Law 66 has become an urban myth. While it was hit and slightly damaged by a 84mm anti tank rifle, it was still operational. Noone was killed. However the Amtrac took no further part in the battle, its unit being ordered to hold in place. Again, the same can be said for the Landing Craft. An 84mm Rifle had been set up to protect Port Stanley from direct landing on its beaches. An unfortunate argentine LC wandered into the sights of the 84mm and got a rude awakening. While the round did hit the LC and start a fire, the LC was able to get away.

    Only 1 Argentinian was killed - Lieutenant-Commander Pedro Giachino. Many were wounded and a few British were also hit but not severely. Need to confirm these facts though. This is just off the top of my head.

    However, the battle for Grytviken was a lot more bloody.
    Last edited by Docman; 3 April 2007, 14:15.

    Comment


    • #3
      some more detail

      (from http://www.raf.mod.uk/falklands/inv1.html)

      The 80 Royal Marines from Naval Party 8901 under Major Mike Norman RM vacated their barracks at Moody Brook at 0200 hrs and took up their positions to try and defend the islands for as long as possible. Major Norman reasoned that the enemy would go for Port Stanley and neutralize the defences there so that forces could be landed on the airstrip and at the harbour, so he positioned his forces accordingly.

      The first prority was to make sure the runway could not be used, so vehicles were parked on it. A small section of men were positioned to cover the obstacles from the south. An observation point was set up east of Yorke point and a machine gun crew was positioned overlooking part of Yorke Bay, a probable landing site, which was obstructed with barbed wire. The machine gunners were given two motorcycles for a quick getaway, and a canoe was also hidden as part of an emergency escape plan.

      No.1 Section were placed to the south of No.5 Section with two machine guns, where the road from the airfield to Port Stanley makes a right-angled turn at Hooker's Point. At the old airstrip to the west of them No.2 Section were placed with a machine gun and an 84mm Carl Gustav anti-tank weapon. They were also equipped with 66mm anti-tank missiles.

      No.3 Section were positioned nearby at the VOR air navigation beacon. The job of these sections was to delay the enemy for as long as possible before withdrawing. No.4 Section were placed on the other side of Stanley harbour with the other 84mm Carl Gustav MAW to engage any enemy landing craft or shipping which tried to get through the narrow entrance to the harbour. They also had a Gemini inflatable boat for transport if they were needed back at Government House.

      No.6 Section was placed on the Murray Heights behind Government House to provide warning of any Argentines approaching from the south. An Observation Post was also set up on Sapper Hill and the sole Marine there, Mike Berry, was equipped with a motorcycle for a quick getaway. The headquarters was at Government House, with Major Noott acting as the Governor's adviser. Major Norman was to be at Look Out Rocks, on the edge of the town to the south-east, commanding the troops on the ground. Finally the motor vessel MV Forrest was sent to sea to keep radar watch over the waters off Port William to the north.

      At 0230 hrs Forrest first detected the enemy. At 0330 hrs it was clear a large fleet was manoevering off Cape Pembroke.

      At 0430 hrs the OP on Sapper Hill detected helicopters near Mullet Creek. 120 of the Argentine Special Forces, the Buzo Tactico, had landed to the south-west of Stanley, near Port Harriet. The Buzo Tactico moved up behind Sapper Hill and divided into two parties. One moved towards the hills behind Stanley overlooking Government House, and the other towards Moody Brook Barracks to the west of Stanely.

      Around 0610 hrs the first firing was heard as the Buzo Tactico attacked the barracks at Moody Brook. The attack was ferocious, combining submachine guns with fragmentation and phosphorous grenades, hoping to catch the Marines in bed, showing that later claims of attempts to spare British lives were completely false. If the barracks had not been already deserted, many men would likely have died. With the buildings at Moody Brook ablaze, the Argentine troops moved on toward Stanley.

      Realising he had been wrong footed, with all his troops positioned for an attack from the north-east, Major Norman called Numbers 1 and 5 Sections back to Government House, and made for the headquarters himself. At 0615 hrs the second party of the Buzo Tactico in the hills overlooking Stanley started their attack on Government House. At this point, Numbers 1 and 5 Sections had not yet had time to return from their deployed positions, so Major Norman only had 31 Royal Marines, 11 sailors from HMS Endurance and Jim Fairfield, an ex-marine, to defend the seat of Government.

      During this attack six Argentinians attempted to enter the rear of Government House. Three of the six were seen, shot and wounded by the Marines, and the other 3 took refuge in the loft of the maids quarters in an outbuilding behind the main house. These three were later captured by Major Noott. The rest of this attack was met with strong rifle and machine-gun fire from the Marines, and was beaten off

      Fifteen minutes later, at 0630 hrs, the main Argentinian force landed at Yorke Bay. This strong force included 18 LVTP-7 'Amtrack' armoured personnel carriers which started to advance towards Stanley immediately. The Americam-made armoured vehicles were equipped with .30 calibre machine guns, and their advance was reported by the OP at Yorke Point. The Sections of Marines still in the area fought short but intense delaying actions against the advance and then fell back to Stanley as ordered.

      Lieutenant Bill Trollope commanded No.2 Section, who did stop one of the LVTP-7's. The armourer, Marine Gibbs, fired a 66mm LAW (light anti-armour weapon), which struck the passenger compartment of the APC. Marines Brown and Best then hit the front of the vehicle with a shot from their 84mm MAW which stopped the Amtrack, and no-one was seen to exit the vehicle. The remaining vehicles deployed their troops and advanced, giving covering fire with their turret mounted machine-guns, forcing the Marines to retreat or be over-run.

      Small but intense actions such as these were now widespread, as the Marines slowly fell back in an attempt to make Government House as ordered. Only 6 men from the outlying Sections managed to return the headquarters, the rest were scattered around Stanley taking part in small fire fights with the enemy. The headquarters was under continuous attack from Buzo Tactico, who repeatedly tried to storm the building.

      No.4 Section, on the north side of the harbour near the entrance, detected a landing craft trying to pass through the narrows into the harbour, and fired their 84mm Carl Gustav at the ship. The round holed the side of the vessel, which shortly sank. The Section radioed Government House as the fighting was reaching its peak, reporting several targets, including an Aircraft Carrier and Cruiser. As the Section was asking for target priorities from Major Norman, all contact with them was lost. Now acting on their own, No.4 Section escaped in the Gemini inflatable and remained undetected for four days after the surrender.

      Now most of the opposing forces were well dug-in, and the battle entered its final phase, marked by a great deal of sniping between riflemen. As dawn broke, many of the Marines were of the opinion that they could hold out against the estimated 600 men surrounding the headquarters. The Governor, Rex Hunt, learned by telephone that the armoured force was advancing and would soon be at Government House. Against armour, the Marines would have little chance. Major Norman knew that there was also no longer any chance of a breakout, so he suggested that Hunt negotiate with the Argentines. The Governor agreed reluctantly, but did not intend surrender. The go-between for the talks was Vice-Commodore Hector Gilobert, an Argentine who ran LADE, the civil airline supplying the Falklands.

      Governor Hunt met with Admiral Busser at Government House and, remarkably, invited him to leave as an unwelcome visitor. The Admiral declined, politely it must be said, and informed the British he had 2800 men ashore and 2000 more still onboard the ships. There really was no longer any option. At 09:25 Hunt ordered the Marines to lay down their arms. The Marines had held out for over 3 hours against a force of far superior numbers and equipment with no loss of British life. It is estimated that 20 - 30 Argentinians died, 5 from around Government house, the crew from the Amtrac and the people aboard the landing craft. This, however, was not the end of the invasion, as another force was heading for South Georgia.

      Comment


      • #4
        I'll continue, and history Genius Docman can add the holes later(seeing as he couldne be bothered continuing the diary himself.)

        3rd April
        Lt Keith Mills led a Party of 22 marines at Grytviken, whose heaviest weapon was an 84mm Carl Gustav. He and his team had "mined" the best landing beaches with drums of explosives, paint and petrol and prepared the wooden jetty for demolition, Before taking up hastily prepared defensive positions around the best landing beach, and the bay at Grytviken. The argentines arrived firstly in two Allouette Helicopters ,one recceing the area, one landing an advance party near the survey station. Another Argentine aircraft, a Puma, was forced to land after taking small arms fire from a GPMG. Its occupants returned fire at the British, While offshore ARA Guerrico shadowed the landing. Shortly after, it was struck by a round from the 84, under the Exocet Launcher. It also took an earlier hit which damaged its freshwater tank. It took further hits from 66 and rifle fire before steaming into the outer bay and Bombarding British Positions with her 100mm gun. Because the British had nothing to respond to this weapon with, and due to the faxct they were being slowly encircled by Argentine Marines, Lt Mills, with th eagreement of his troops, decided to surrender, but not before one of the party was hit by rifle fire while firing his 66mm LAW. The 22 marines and 13 Scientists from the station were put aboard Bahia Paraíso, and eventually reached England by 20 april. Many returned with 42 Commando to the falklands later in the conflict. Three Argentinians were Killed.
        HMS Endurance was preparing to Launch its Wasp Helicopters to attack the Argentinian ships involved in the assault when the message came through that Lt Mills had surrendered. Fleet HQ ordered its Captain not to engage in any offensive action. Its Captain, in his sitrep to london called it "The Most Humiliating day of my life"

        Meanwhile, at Home in the UK Operation Corporate had begun. Admiral Sandy Woodward was to Command The first Flotilla heading south, with the County Class Destroyers Antrim and Glamorgan, Type 42 Destroyers Coventry, Glasgow and Sheffield, Type 22 Frigate Brilliant, and the Type 21 Frigate Arrow. The Rothsay Class Frigate HMS Plymouth was to join the Fleet as she returned from duty in Gibraltar. Along with the Tanker RFA Tidespring, All 9 ships set sail at 0230hrs. The rest of the fleet would be selected later that day, and prepared to sail within 48 hours. 3 Commando Brigade, under Brig Gen Julian Thompson was put on alert to head south, Consisting of 40, 42 and 45 Commando, the latter two specialising in Artic and Mountain warfare. 29 Commando Regiment Provided the Artillery support, with its 105mm guns. It also had its own Air Squadron, with 9 Gazelle Helicopters and 6 Westland Scout Helicopters, 1st Raiding squadron with its light boats, 59 Commando Sqn Royal Engineers, an air Defence Troop and a small ECM unit.


        Catch-22 says they have a right to do anything we can't stop them from doing.

        Comment


        • #5
          4th April
          HMS Conqueror’ sailed from Faslane.
          United Nations General Assembly passes resolution 502 calling for the cessation of hostilities, withdrawal of Argentine troops and the resumption of sovereignty talks between Britain and Argentina.
          "Recalling the statement made by the President of the Security Council at
          the 2345th meeting of the Security Council on 1 April 1982 (S/14944) calling on
          the Governments of Argentina and the United Kingdom of Great Britain and
          Northern Ireland to refrain from the use or threat of force in the region of the
          Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas),

          Deeply disturbed at reports of an invasion on 2 April 1982 by armed forces
          of Argentina,

          Determining that there exists a breach of the peace in the region of the
          Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas),

          1. Demands an immediate cessation of hostilities;

          2. Demands an immediate withdrawal of all Argentine forces from the
          Falkland Islands (Islas Malvinas);

          3. Calls on the Governments of Argentina and the United Kingdom to seek a
          diplomatic solution to their differences and to respect fully the purposes and
          principles of the Charter of the United Nations"

          Meanwhile, the Buildup continued in the UK, as Argentina settled into life in las Malvinas. A law was passed in the UK allowing Merchant ships to be taken up from trade(STUFT). P&O, Townsend Thorensen,Stena and United Towing all offered their ships before being asked.The Operation would have been impossible if Merchant ships were not made available by STUFT.Ships that were taken up from trade and became part of the Fleet that went south were as follows:
          Liners: Canberra, QE2,Uganda
          Passenger/Gen Cargo: Norland, Rangatira, St Edmund, St Helena.
          Container/Cargo: Astronemer, Atlantic Conveyer, Atlantic Causeway, Avelona Star, Baltic Ferry, Contender Bezant,Elk, Europic Ferry, Geestport, Laertes, Lycaon, Nordic Ferry, Saxonia, Strathewe, Tor Caledonia,
          Tankers: Alvega, Anco Charger, Balder London, British Avon, British Dart, British esk, British Tamar, British Tay, British Test, British Trent, British Wye, Fort Toronto, G. A. Walker, Scottish Eagle, Shell Eburna.
          Offshore Support Vessel: British Enterprise III, Stena Inspector, Stena Seaspread, Wimpey Seahorse.
          Tugs: Irishman, Salvageman, Yorkshireman,
          Cable Ship: Iris
          All in all 500000 GRT of merchant vessel, some Requisitioned because of their unique design and the urgency of the task, more chartered in the normal way.Before departure all were fitted with: Minimum naval communications and
          some Satnav (SN) and
          Satcom (SC) equipment,
          Most were fitted for RAS,
          Many with one or two helipads (H or 2H) and
          Some with extra accommodation and light AA weapons.

          When News reached London of the Size of the Argentinian forces on the Islands, it was decided to boost 3 Commando Brigade by adding 3 Para, Which was top of the Spearhead Batallion Roster, Commanded by Lt Col Hew Pike. 3 Para had acted as enemy to 3 Cdo Brigade in recent exercises. The Rivalry between the Marines and the Paras would spur both units on throughout the campaign.(Cabbageheads V Maroon Machine)
          T Battery of the 12th Air Defence Regiment was also added, with their 12 Rapier Anti Aircraft Missile Launch units. Armoured support for 3 Cdo Bde was added with the inclusion of 3 and 4 Troop of the Blues and Royals,(Now part of the Household Cavalry) who brought 4 Scorpions, 4 Scimitars and a Samson Recovery vehicle. The Unit was under the command of Lt Mark Coreth.


          Catch-22 says they have a right to do anything we can't stop them from doing.

          Comment


          • #6
            5th April
            HMS Invincible’ and ‘HMS Hermes’ sailed from Portsmouth. Both were only equipped with Helicopters and the S/VTOL Sea Harrier. The Last of the Conventional Aircraft Carriers, Ark Royal, with Phantom Interceptors, Buccaneer Bombers,And Gannet AEW aircraft had been retired 4 years earlier and Broken up in 1980.
            Hermes, though Sister ship to Ark Royal, had been converted to a Commando Carrier in 1971, and Later on again to Carry S/VTOL aircraft. Has a conventional carrier still been available, the Argentine Air Force would have had a much more difficult time Attacking the Task Force. "Vince" as HMS Invincible became known, was almost new, and designed as an Anti Submarine Carrier, with a squadron of ASW Seakings, and 5 Sea Harrier "fighter/bombers".800 sqn RNAS on Hermes was reinforced to 12 Harriers, and 801 on Vince to 8, by taking over aircraft of 899 sqn, the Training unit at Yeovilton. In Theater, The 20 Sea Harriers would be outnumbered ten to one by The Argentine Air Force.
            820 and 826sqn joined their ships, and 820 included HRH Prince Andrew as co pilot on one of the Seakings.846sqn brought 9 Sea King 4s to Hermes, and 7 more would find their way south with the RFA, along with 16 wessex 5s of 845sqn.
            HMS Alacrity and Antelope left without the blaze of publicity of the Carriers, along with RFA Pearleaf and Resource, While HMS Broadsword and Yarmouth, who were heading for the Gulf, reversed course and joined the fleet heading south.

            Foreign Secretary Lord Carrington and Defence Secretary John Nott offered their Resignation. Only Lord Carrington's was accepted. He was replaced by Francis Pym.
            The Diplomatic battle begun too, with the British Ambassador Going to the Media in the US to seek the Support of its traditional allies. The Conflict had been mentioned at a White house briefing earlier to some Laughter from those present, who thought Latin American Gauchos in uniform invading an Island where a governer wore a Plumed hat and drove about in a London Taxi was not something that deserved their attention. This attitude soon changed.


            Catch-22 says they have a right to do anything we can't stop them from doing.

            Comment


            • #7
              http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lAD__PBr_q0

              Comment


              • #8
                Has a conventional carrier still been available, the Argentine Air Force would have had a much more difficult time Attacking the Task Force
                The Yanks did offer one of their carriers, but without battlegroup, crew, or air group. Was decided it would take too long to re-qualify the F-4 and Buccaneer pilots, and to train enough crew to just get a Forrestal class to 'go thataway'.

                NTM
                Driver, tracks, troops.... Drive and adjust!!

                Comment


                • #9
                  Sea Harriers prove their worth

                  Originally posted by Goldie fish View Post
                  5th April
                  HMS Invincible’ and ‘HMS Hermes’ sailed from Portsmouth. Both were only equipped with Helicopters and the S/VTOL Sea Harrier. The Last of the Conventional Aircraft Carriers, Ark Royal, with Phantom Interceptors, Buccaneer Bombers,And Gannet AEW aircraft had been retired 4 years earlier and Broken up in 1980. Hermes, though Sister ship to Ark Royal, had been converted to a Commando Carrier in 1971, and Later on again to Carry S/VTOL aircraft. Has a conventional carrier still been available, the Argentine Air Force would have had a much more difficult time Attacking the Task Force. "Vince" as HMS Invincible became known, was almost new, and designed as an Anti Submarine Carrier, with a squadron of ASW Seakings, and 5 Sea Harrier "fighter/bombers".800 sqn RNAS on Hermes was reinforced to 12 Harriers, and 801 on Vince to 8, by taking over aircraft of 899 sqn, the Training unit at Yeovilton. In Theater, The 20 Sea Harriers would be outnumbered ten to one by The Argentine Air Force.
                  In spite of the imbalance and the difficulties, the British shot down 45 Argentine aircraft - 21 by Fleet Air Arm Sea Harriers - for the loss of 10 of their own aircraft downed, 2 of which were Sea Harriers. (Accidents and aircraft destroyed on the ground are not included.)

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    The Great White Whale



                    An enduring image of the Falklands War was that of SS Canberra, ‘The Great White Whale’, one of the STUFT ships. In a matter of days, Canberra was transformed from a luxury cruise liner into a battle-ready troopship - well almost: when she sailed from Southampton on Friday 9th April, a group of Vosper Thornycroft workers went with her to finish the forward flight deck. Embarked on Canberra were
                    • 40 Commando (less one company on HMS Hermes)
                    • 42 Commando (less one company earmarked for the South Georgia operation)
                    • 3 Para

                    As she sailed, crowds gathered to wish her well and her 'passengers' good luck. History was made the following day when an RAF Sea King helicopter made the first of many landings on Canberra’s new midships flight deck.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Hi all,
                      Among the recent lot of programmes about the Falklands War was one about the bombing of the Sir Galahad, with the Welsh Guards aboard. There was a lot of criticism of the senior officers,particularly of the continuous changing of orders and priorities. Get the WG off; no, yes, no, not here, yes here, around the headland to the next cove, no, stay here, have we air defence, yes or no,etc,etc. Lots of finger pointing and denials and blame-shifting. I did read an account by an Argentinian pilot who stated that they encountered the ships by accident, expecting to meet frigates and that their attack was successful more by accident rather than design.
                      The programme also highlighted the suicide rate amongst former FI veterans, which at one stage was around ten per year.
                      regards
                      GttC

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        6th April
                        The RAF set up in Ascension Island.first RAF aircraft moved to Ascension's Wideawake airfield. Two Nimrod MR.1's of 42(TB) Sqdn arrived from St. Mawgan via the Azores, and next day started patrolling the seas around Ascension and supporting the nuclear subs on passage south. They were replaced in mid month by more modern MR.2's, but from the UK, later flew SAR for the Harriers as they staged to Ascension. Also on Tuesday, RFA "Fort Austin" reached the island and three days later continued on with D Sqdn SAS, two newly-embarked No.845 Wessex as well as three Sea Skua-equipped Lynx for ships of the "Advanced Group". It was from these that the South Georgia Task Group was detached. After Admiral Woodward had transferred his flag to "Glamorgan", and under the command of Captain Young in "Antrim" they went ahead and reached Ascension on Saturday, but neither they, nor the rest of the "Advanced Group" which got in next day spent much time there. Earlier in the week, RFA support tanker "Brambleleaf", after leaving her Persian Gulf Patrol headed via the Cape of Good Hope to refuel the South Georgia ships. Much of the Stores were flown in from the USA on C140 aircraft.
                        Assault ship HMS Fearless headed out from Portsmouth as Brigade HQ with Commodore Clapp, and off Portland took on board Brigadier Thompson and three 846 Sqn Sea Kings..


                        Catch-22 says they have a right to do anything we can't stop them from doing.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          7th April
                          Canberra Arrives in Southampton to be fitted with helipad. HMS Antrim and Plymouth detach from Task group and head with RFA Tidespring to become Task Group 319.9. Making speed for Acension. They will become the spearhead in the Retaking of South Georgia, after Embarking 42 Commando's M Company. This Would be known as Operation Paraquet. RFA stores support ship "Stromness" left Portsmouth after being converted to carry 45 Cdo RM.


                          Catch-22 says they have a right to do anything we can't stop them from doing.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            8th April
                            "Haig Shuttle" begins in London.US Secretary of State, Gen Alexander Haig, At The request of Ronald Reagan, flew between Buenos Aires and London in an effort to bring a diplomatic settlement to the situation. London was willing to discuss such a resolution should argentina Abide by UN resolution 502 and withdraw all military from the islands.However argentina was not willing to do this until their soverignty over the islands could be recognised.


                            Catch-22 says they have a right to do anything we can't stop them from doing.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              9th April
                              EEC Announce sanctions against Argentina.Britain's European partners announce an embargo on arms sales to Argentina, as well as economic sanctions although, as the conflict progresses, support for sanctions declines when Italy and Ireland withdraw.


                              Alexander Haig arrives in Buenos Aires, to be greeted by crowds supporting the Actions of the Junta

                              By Good Friday 9th, most of the 3 Cdo Bde units and their equipment had left on a variety of ships, although some flew to Ascension. Apart from one RM Cdo Coy on "Hermes" and part of one on "Resource", the rest sailed in ships of the Amphibious Task Group. Of the four LSL's sailing at this time, "Sir Percivale" and "Sir Lancelot" left from Marchwood, and "Sir Galahad" and "Sir Geraint" from Devonport. The first merchantmen also sailed. Taking just two days to convert from cruise ship to trooper, "Canberra" left Southampton on Friday 9th with 2400 men including most of 40 and 42 Cdo RM and 3 Para, and accompanied by RO-RO ship "Elk" loaded with ammunition and vehicles. Over the weekend, the first tankers headed for the South Atlantic, mainly to top-up the RFA's in the tanker holding areas - "British Esk" from Portland, "British Tay" after loading at Milford Haven and Campbeltown, and "British Test" from Portsmouth. Also from Portsmouth on Saturday, tugs "Irishman" and "Salvageman" loaded with towing and salvage gear left first for Ascension. Apart from the SBS, the other units destined to take part in re-capturing South Georgia flew to Ascension during the the week - D Sqdn 22nd SAS apparently earlier on, followed by M Coy 42 Cdo from Brize Norton on Friday.

                              Argentina Reinforces its 2000 troops on the falklands to 13000, including conscripts.(Class of 62/63). 25 Pucara twin prop Strike aircraft are stationed at Stanley.


                              Catch-22 says they have a right to do anything we can't stop them from doing.

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