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Argentina's 'Breathtaking Hypocrisy'

Posted: 05/07/2012 00:00

Thirty years after the end of the Falklands War, Argentina's president, Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner, has launched a diplomatic campaign to gain control of the islands of such breathtaking hypocrisy she makes Jimmy Carr look like Martin Bell.

At the UN, in the breaks of the latest G20 summit, every time she opens her mouth it seems, she's been accusing Britain of naked colonialism, demanding we hand the islands, and the 3000 British citizens who live there, over to her.

Colonialism - that's rich, coming from a country of European immigrants whose national policy has been to wipe out all trace of the people they snatched it from.

I spent three months there during the Falklands War. Lovely food. Strange there are no black or brown people.

Argentina's 97% white, according the census. Wonder what happened to the Indian tribes who once flourished on the Pampas? Well, what do you know; they were deliberately exterminated in a series of genocidal military operations in the 19th century.

Wonder what happened to those strange little folk Darwin found down in Tierra del Fuego? "Short, round, oily creatures, four feet fully grown, mostly stark naked despite the intense cold, with a curious talent for mimicry", was how he described them. Not any more. They were declared vermin and a pound was paid for every decapitated head.

Wonder what happened to all those black African slaves - more than a third of Argentina's population at one time? Let me tell you. Thousands upon thousands of black men were forcibly recruited into the army, packed into the front line, deliberately used as cannon fodder in bloody campaigns against the natives and the neighbours. The black women and children either succumbed to disease or were simply assimilated into the floods of Italian and Spanish incomers.

Blanqueamiento -"white washing" was official policy for generations. The blatantly racist constitution has only recently been relaxed.

Result: Argentina is so white that the most prominent of the handful of blacks was arrested at the airport because officials just assumed her Argentine passport must be false.

Don't get me wrong, I love the place and the people. They're brilliant at life but disastrous at government. They invented the Tango and thought politics should be broadly similar: a substitute for sex, performed on the streets, brainless, showy, exciting and doomed. That's how they've ended up being ruled by a succession of self-glorifying Ruritanian birdbrains and their molls.

Inevitably, it all goes horribly wrong at regular intervals and they have to find a way of distracting the mob on the street.

Mrs Kirchner stands high above that mob on the balcony of the Casa Rosada when she accuses us of the evils of imperialism.

But the moral high ground, believe me, it isn't.

 

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