The Official History of the Falklands Campaign, Volume 2
War and Diplomacy
Routledge – 2007 – 858 pages
In the second volume of his official history of the Falklands Campaign, Lawrence Freedman provides a detailed and authoritative account of one of the most extraordinary periods in recent British political history and a vivid portrayal of a government at war.
After the shock of the Argentine invasion of the Falklands in April 1982, Margaret Thatcher faced the crisis that came to define her premiership as she determined to recover the islands. The book covers all aspects of the campaign - economic and diplomatic as well as military - demonstrating the extent of the gamble that the government took.
There are important accounts of the tensions in relations with the United States, concerns among the military commanders about the risks they were expected to take, the problems of dealing with the media and the attempts to reach a negotiated settlement. This definitive account describes in dramatic detail events such as the sinking of the Belgrano, the Battle of Goose Green and the final push to Stanley. Special attention is also paid to the aftermath of the war, including the various enquiries, and the eventual restoration of diplomatic relations with Argentina.
This paperback edition has been updated, corrected and contains some new material.
'a masterpiece of even-handed scholarship, and will undoubtedly remain the definitive word on the conflict.’
Dominic Sandbrook, Daily Telegraph
‘Freedman is not just a good historian but a terse, readable writer. This is a fine book about modern war, warts and all, in an age when such evenly balanced conflicts are rare.’
Simon Jenkins, Sunday Times
‘Freedman has the rare gift of offering both strategic guidance and a fine grasp of tactical details.’
‘In Lawrence Freedman, the campaign has found an impeccable chronicler’
Max Hastings, Sunday Telegraph
‘Official this history certainly is, and something more. But is it definitive, critics may cry? With its personal panache and incisiveness, it is better than that – at least for this critic.' Robert Fox, Evening Standard
‘fascinating, balanced, fantastically well-researched and well-written.’ Andrew Roberts, New Statesman
'I highly recommend both volumes … a must-have for serious students of this period', The Northern Mariner
Introduction. Acknowledgements. Timings. Section 1: At War Section 2: Options for a Settlement Section 3: Operation Sutton Section 4: The Peruvian Initiative Section 5: American Support Section 6: Enforcing the Exclusion Zone Section 7: International Opinion Section 8: The Changing Military Balance Section 9: Fortress Falklands Section 10: The Franks Report
Sir Lawrence Freedman is Professor of War Studies at King’s College where he is currently Vice Principal. He has written extensively on military strategy, cold war history and contemporary conflict and is a regular newspaper columnist.