“Malvinas is a sacred cause for the Argentines used by the military with a spurious purpose: to remain in power” according to Juan Bautista ‘Tata’ Yoffre author of the recently launched book “1982” on the Falklands/Malvinas conflict.
Joffre argues Argentina had no chance of defeating Britain since Margaret Thatcher was a member of the ‘Holy Alliance’ (together with President Ronald Reagan and Pope John Paul II) intent in bringing down the Soviet Union by destabilizing Poland.
Furthermore he resurrects rumours of the time which said that if the UK suffered a major loss in the Falklands conflict, they were prepared to appeal to nuclear weapons.
Joffre is not just another Argentine writer nor is this his first book on controversial issues: he has been a journalist, politician, ambassador, and head of intelligence services under President Carlos Menem and has had access to many up to now undisclosed documents.
“1982 was a crucial year for the Argentines, as a consequence of the Malvinas war and the fall of Puerto Argentino (Stanley) we managed that the military government opened up and gave way to a democratic exit for the country”, said Joffre in an interview promoting his book.
The former chief of Intelligence was particularly critical of the military Junta of the time, General Leopoldo Galtieri, Admiral Jorge Anaya and Brigadier Basilio Lami Dozo, and their decision to invade the Islands.
“They needed a war to remain in power. I have always said that Malvinas is something too sacred for the Argentines to be used with such a spurious purpose like wanting to remain in power”.
Further on Joffre said that Argentina many times makes decisions without taking into account the world it lives in and the consequences of such actions and the alliances it can offend.
At the time, according to Joffre in the world prevailed the Holy Alliance of PM Thatcher, President Reagan and Pope John Paul II, which was very much concerned with events in Poland and fearful of the reactions from then the powerful Soviet Union.
“Galtieri ignored all this and to save his government in free fall to disaster decides on the Malvinas move and challenges Thatcher without taking into account that she was a member of the Holy Alliance”.
The Junta didn’t take into account the fact that the United States continued to be the historic ally of the United Kingdom as it was during the two world wars.
“The very good friend of hard times came to the rescue of its pal. They didn’t anticipate either that the UK would send a task force to recover the Islands”, points out Joffre.
“The military didn’t bother to assess the real interests of the US and they were convinced that Washington would remain neutral, plus ignoring UK close links with the US and the Vatican”.
However, Yoffre also states that the British and US intelligence services failed for not having taken seriously the possibility of an Argentine invasion of the Malvinas.
Finally when asked about the chances of an Argentine victory in the war, the writer said “no way” adding that “Argentina did not have the slightest chance: it was fighting the world’s third military power”.
Furthermore, “in the case of the UK suffering a major loss, such as the sinking of an air carrier, they were willing to drop a nuke bomb in Argentine territory. The place chosen was Cordoba”, affirmed Joffre.
To write the book Yoffre had access to numerous archives and undisclosed documents from the so called National Reorganization Process (1976/1983) among which many from the Foreign Affairs ministry and the daily Memoir that the Galtieri, Anaya, Lami Dozo Junta kept during the Malvinas invasion planning meetings.
To this he added many testimonies from protagonists from the time.
Yoffre insists he had no official aid or support from the Argentine government for the writing of his ‘1982’ book.