Prince William's deployment to Falklands draws diplomatic outrage
Search and rescue may be his job, but there is no saving Prince William from the diplomatic cesspool that has been spawned by the announcement of his posting to the Falkland Islands.
Argentina, which disputes Britain’s sovereignty over the Islands off its coast, calls it a “provocative act.”
This sabre-rattling by the South American nation has been going on since Britain’s reign over the Islands began in 1833.
With William set for a six-week stint there, the tension between the two nations has only intensified.
"It is one more provocative act that shows Britain's military presence in a zone of peace where there is no armed conflict," said Sebastian Brugo Marco, an Argentine official with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
"One cannot ignore the political content of this military operation bearing in mind that the prince forms part of the Royal Family".
Britain has fired back, calling Argentina’s stance “deeply misguided.”
“For the life of me, I cannot understand why this is provocative,” Tory MP Patrick Mercer told the Daily Mail. “It is certainly not as provocative as invading the Falkland Islands in 1982.”
During that military conflict, Britian fought off an invasion of the Islands by Argentina.
“It completely escapes me why any foreign government would consider the movements of Prince William to be any of their business,” added Mercer.
The RAF regularly posts its personnel on the Islands in the South Atlantic, but throwing a royal into the picture – and on the 30th anniversary of the ’82 war -- has put oil on the fire. One reader commented on a Argentine news website that he hoped Prince William’s helicopter would crash and he would “die frozen in the sea.”
Earlier this year, Argentina’s president, Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner, said Britain was “arrogant” in its refusal to negotiate control over the Islands.
Britain insists Prince William’s deployment in February-March is just routine and he will not stray from his job as a co-pilot in helicopter search-and-rescue.
“There are no ceremonies or tributes planned by the United Kingdom with Prince William.”