I just saw a rivetting documentary about the HMS Coventry in The Falklands War. I realised watching it that it’s a conflict I know very little about and would be interested to read a book about. Can anyone here recommend a book on the war? A general history of the conflict would be good but feel free to recommend biographies etc. related to the conflict.
The Green Eyed Boys by Christian Jennings, about the British paras. Not a big geopolitical overview, but a good look at how confusion, poor upper-leadership, cold & fatigue are coped with by professional soldiers.
It’s a few years old, but I remember Max Hastings and Simon Jenkins’s, The Battle for the Falklands, to be a good general history of the conflict.
Edit: Here is a monograph of the Falklands’ War, written from the Argentine perspective. Looks interesting in a brief scan.
Oh I didn’t know Hastings had written about the conflict. His other history books that I’ve got are top class.
If you want something out of left field, there is a short book (more of a pamphlet actually) called Waking up to War, which is the story of the war from the point of view of a eleven year old girl who lived here at the time. It’s an absorbing read, but if you want a copy, you’ll have to PM me today as I’m leaving the Falklands on Wednesday and probably won’t be coming back.
White, Rowland (2006). Vulcan 607. Bantam Press tells the story of Operation Black Buck - the bombing raids on Stanley, requiring precision flying and multiple staged refuelling operations. It’s not a demanding read, but pretty interesting.
Tapioca Dextrin is sending me a copy of the book they mentioned.
Well, it’s in the post. It might arrive sometime this year!
He was actually on the scene.
I have several of his books, and “Falklands” is next.
This arrived today! Thanks!
Less than three weeks to arrive. I think that’s a record!
Sea Harrier over the Falklands by Cdr Nigel ‘Sharkey’ Ward is also a good read.
I read that awhile back and liked it. I’d also suggest Duncan Anderson’s The Falklands War 1982 (Osprey Publ. 2002), a concise, well-illustrated book on the conflict. My biggest surprise was learning that the British troops attacking Port Stanley were in greater danger of running out of rations than the Argentines who were defending it.
BTW, was there ever a request by the British for, or an offer from their own governments of, troops, aircraft, ships, supplies or other resources from the other Commonwealth countries to help retake the Falklands?
I’ve never read this book, but I remember seeing it on the racks: The Sinking of the Belgrano.
Borges on the War: “Two bald men fighting over a comb.”
Sandy Woodward’s One Hundred Days is worth a read. He was in charge of parts of the task force, but not all. It’s an illuminating account of what happens at senior command levels when they are all basically making it up as they go along.
Probably not. The task Force set sail just a few days after the invasion, so even if anyone had anything useful, there wouldn’t have been enough time to do anything.
I remember your original inquiry, and I also remember not being able to find anything. Funnily enough, some of the cables between the U.S. and U.K. have been declassified this year, and may be perused here. They are notable to me, in that they don’t mention at all, the prospect of any other country besides the U.S. helping the Brits. Not the Canadians, not the Aussies, no one.
Did any help out? It’s hard to say. I remember reading at either the wiki or in Hastings, that Canadian and Aussie vessels took over RN vessels’ assorted NATO duties. This thread of speculation about possible Canadian involvement has a few nuggets of speculation and rumor, including the supposition that the Australian and New Zealand SAS contributed a few personnel. OTOH, there were claims that observers from the U.S. and Canada who were training with Sandy Woodward’s force during the exercise that preceded the invasion, had to be left behind, to the chagrin of the officers involved.
I still think it’s an interesting question, because there’s anecdotal evidence of various Commonwealth troops, sailors and pilots getting ready to be asked to join in, but seemingly no discussion of why the British ultimately decided to not ask for direct assistance. If I find anything, I’ll let you know.