The Falklands War: Margaret Thatcher’s great victory

In 1982, British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher and Argentine President General Leopoldo Galtieri had much in common. Both were fervently anti-Communist, both presided over nations in economic turmoil, and both were ruthless leaders prepared assert their power by going to war. 

On April 2, 1982, Argentina sent a force of 600 soldiers to seize control of the tiny British-held islands off the country’s coast, according to the Imperial War Museums. In the pre-dawn hours, two Argentine Navy vessels crept up on the coast of East Falkland, close to the capital city of Port Stanley, and unleashed an armada of landing craft into the choppy waters of the South Atlantic. Equipped with armored personnel carriers, heavy machine guns, mortars and recoilless rifles, the invasion force swept ashore unchallenged and rushed inland toward the capital. 

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