On This Date in History: It is not unusual for a government in turmoil with a risk of collapse from within to create an international incident in order to unify the country against a common foe besides the government. In the late 1970’s and early 1980’s, Argentina had been ruled by a military dictarship that had once been popular but was rapidly losing support from the people as they grew weary of the number of political prisoners that had been taken as well as people who had simply disappeared. The economy was shrinking at 6% per year and inflation was running at 160%. The unions began to join forces with political opposition groups and the military Junta knew it was in trouble. Then, the thought a gift had been delivered to them.
Off of Argentina lay the Falkland and the South Georgia Islands. These islands had long been part of the British empire. Throughout the 20th century, the general global feeling was that empires needed to come to an end but, inspite of numerous attempts through the United Nations, Argentina was unable to get Britain to cede the islands that resided so far away from England. In 1979, an Argentian buisinessman (Constantino Davidoff) purchased a former whale slaughterhouse on the South Georgia Islands from an Englishman(Christian Salvensen). The new owner wanted to dismantle the plant and sell the mettle for scrap. The HMS Endurance was in the vicinity and the Argentine owner asked the Brits to loan him the use of their naval vessel to help him haul off the scrap. The crown denied his request. So, he went to his own Navy which obliged. This was the perfect set up for the Junta. It knew that the people of Argentina supported the idea of the nation gaining sovereignty over the islands off its coast and, if the Junta could use the situtation properly, it could perhaps regain public support.
So, in March 1982 when the Argentine Navy ship showed up at the South Georgia Islands, residents there complained to London that there was a warship with the Argentine flag floating in their waters. So, the British sent the HMS Endurance to the scene to prevent any landing by any Argentinians. Argentina responded by sending the military transport Bahia Parasio to the islands with the hope of occupying the islands peacefully. Now, the Junta had a plan for invading the Falkland and South Georgia Islands on the shelf for a couple of years. The nation had a pretty decent military and the battlefield would be 7500 miles from England. Also, they figured that they could use the weather as an ally by staging their invasion between June and October, which is the winter time in the Southern Hemisphere which would make things more difficult for England. The advantage really was with Argentina.
But…the people at home were getting restless and protests were growing quickly against the military leaders. So, they made the mistake of moving up their time table. On this date in 1982, Argentine ground forces of landed on the South Georgia Islands. The Falkland Islands War was on and the Argentine government appealed to President Reagan for support. The Rio Treaty of 1947 called on all nations of the Americas to come to the aid of any nation that was invaded by foreign forces. The Junta told Reagan that they were enforcing the rights of Argentine workers to legally do the job of removing the whaling slaughterhouse. I guess Ron didn’t agree because he didn’t lift a finger. After all, England was not your ordinary foreign invader. It had been our pal throughout the 20th Century and Reagan had established a strong bond with Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, who earned her reputation as the “Iron Lady” by calling the Argentine bluff.
Instead of quietly negotiating away the islands, she sent a task force of ships, submarines, sailors and over 10,000 troops all the way from England. The task force left on Aprl 5, 1982…just 3 days after the Argentine invasion. The first encounter of the Brits and Argentines happened on April 25 and by the middle of June, the war was over with an Argentinian surrender…just before the winter got going. Many historians agree, the biggest mistake of the Argentine Junta was to attack in the fall instead of sticking to their plan of a winter assault. In the eyes of many, the Argentinians had a good case for obtaining the islands but, the military might and determination of Margaret Thatcher rendered any legitimate points moot. A little more than a year later, the Argentinian Junta was out of office and any hope of ever getting to the negotiating table with Britain over ceding the islands was doomed. They never should have neglected the weather forecast.
Weather Bottom Line: As I had expected the SPC revised the risk area for severe weather on Thursday. The map above is the Thursday morning depiction and it will be updated further on Thursday though it probably won’t change much. If the GFS is correct, we can expect some pretty strong storms with several warnings. The NAM continues to be less aggressive. I suspect that we will have thunderstorms with several warnings but they could be weakening a bit should come through in the evening. However, if they do arrive in the late afternoon, as the GFS suggests, then we could see a number of strong storms. It will be windy both Thursday evening and Wednesday morning. The SPC in the extended outlook still does not depict a risk in our area but in my mind, the system coming across appears to be a candidate for some rough weather. Again, the GFS is extremely aggressive with the storms on Sunday with the indecies so dramatic that if they were to hold, then we’d get whacked pretty good. We will still have to wait as we’re still talking about 4 days out. Either way, look for storms late Thursday with some prospect of strong storms and on Sunday with a risk for severe weather. After that, decidedly cooler than average conditions will move in with highs in the 40’s for the first few days of next week.
DAY 1 CONVECTIVE OUTLOOK
NWS STORM PREDICTION CENTER NORMAN OK
1256 AM CDT THU APR 02 2009
VALID 021200Z – 031200Z
…THERE IS A MDT RISK OF SVR TSTMS ACROSS WRN TN…MS…AL…SRN
…THERE IS A SLGT RISK OF SVR TSTMS SURROUNDING THE MDT RISK FROM
ERN TX INTO THE OH VALLEY AND COASTAL CAROLINAS…
…SIGNIFICANT SEVERE WEATHER EXPECTED ACROSS MUCH OF THE GULF COAST
STATES INTO THE WRN TN VALLEY…
EARLY MORNING SATELLITE/RADAR IMAGERY CLEARLY DEPICT CENTER OF UPPER
LOW OVER NERN NM NEAR TCC…DIGGING SEWD IN LINE WITH 00Z MODEL
GUIDANCE. THIS FEATURE SHOULD MOVE ALONG THE RED RIVER THIS MORNING
BEFORE EJECTING NEWD ACROSS AR INTO WRN TN DURING THE EVENING HOURS
AS 90KT+ MID LEVEL JET ROTATES INTO MS/AL. NEEDLESS TO SAY LOW
LEVEL RESPONSE TO THIS UPPER JET WILL INTENSIFY AS SFC LOW EVOLVES
OVER AR BY 18Z WITH SUBSEQUENT MOVEMENT AND DEEPENING EXPECTED INTO
WRN TN BEFORE LIFTING NEWD ALONG THE OH RIVER TONIGHT.
MARITIME AIRMASS HAS YET TO SURGE INLAND SIGNIFICANTLY ALONG THE
GULF COAST WITH GREATEST NWD MOVEMENT NOW OCCURRING ACROSS CNTRL TX
IMMEDIATELY AHEAD OF SFC FRONT…AND FARTHER EAST ACROSS PORTIONS
SRN AL/GA IN ASSOCIATION WITH NWD DRIFTING WARM FRONT. THIS LATTER
FEATURE MAY NOT LOOSE ITS IDENTITY AS CONVECTION DEVELOPS
ALONG/NORTH OF THE WIND SHIFT THROUGH THE PERIOD.
LATEST THINKING IS MOISTURE/INSTABILITY WILL SURGE NWD ACROSS
CNTRL/ERN TX OVER THE NEXT SEVERAL HOURS WHICH SHOULD RESULT IN
STRONG/SEVERE THUNDERSTORM DEVELOPMENT BETWEEN 09-12Z. THIS
ACTIVITY SHOULD SPREAD RAPIDLY NEWD AHEAD OF COLD FRONT INTO THE
LOWER MS VALLEY BY 18Z. BY EARLY AFTERNOON IT APPEARS SIGNIFICANT
BOUNDARY LAYER MOISTENING/HEATING WILL HAVE OCCURRED FROM NRN
LA/SERN AR INTO WRN TN. FORECAST SOUNDINGS SUGGEST THIS REGION WILL
BECOME QUITE SUPPORTIVE FOR STRONG SUPERCELL DEVELOPMENT AS SHEAR
INCREASES ALONG WITH STEEPENING LAPSE RATES. ANY STORMS THAT EVOLVE
AHEAD OF DEEPENING LOW WITHIN EXIT REGION OF UPPER JET WILL EASILY
ROTATE AND IF 60F+ SFC DEW POINTS DO INDEED SPREAD INTO THIS REGION
THEN TORNADOES CAN BE EXPECTED…SOME POTENTIALLY STRONG AND LONG
TRACK. BETWEEN 18-00Z IT APPEARS THE GREATEST THREAT FOR TORNADIC
SUPERCELLS WILL BE ACROSS NRN LA/SERN AR/MS INTO WRN AL/TN. DURING
THE EVENING/OVERNIGHT HOURS…A CONCENTRATED ZONE OF SEVERE SHOULD
SPREAD DOWNSTREAM AS LLJ LIFTS INTO THE OH VALLEY AND SFC LOW EJECTS
INTO SRN IND.
FARTHER SOUTHEAST…WEAK WARM FRONT WILL LIKELY REMAIN ANCHORED
ACROSS SRN GA INTO SRN AL AS PERSISTENT CONVECTION DUE TO WARM
ADVECTION MAINTAINS ELY COMPONENT AND COOLER BOUNDARY LAYER
TEMPERATURES JUST SOUTH OF THE HIGHER TERRAIN. MARITIME TROPICAL
AIRMASS IS SITUATED JUST SOUTH OF THIS BOUNDARY WITH 70F+ DEW POINTS
LOCATED ACROSS THE FL PANHANDLE. THIS MOISTURE SHOULD CREEP NWWD
INTO SRN AL PRIOR TO INFLUENCE OF UPPER TROUGH. EVEN SO…MID-HIGH
LEVEL FLOW WITHIN SRN STREAM WILL INCREASE WITH TIME AND SHEAR
PROFILES WILL BECOME QUITE STRONG ATOP AN INCREASINGLY UNSTABLE
AIRMASS. IN FACT EMBEDDED IMPULSES WITHIN THIS FLOW MAY ACTIVATE
ROBUST THUNDERSTORM DEVELOPMENT EARLY IN THE PERIOD. FORECAST
SOUNDINGS ACROSS THIS REGION ARE IMPRESSIVE WITH SHEAR/INSTABILITY
STRONGLY INDICATIVE OF SUPERCELLS CAPABLE OF GENERATING
TORNADOES…SOME OF WHICH MAY BE STRONG. IT/S NOT ENTIRELY CLEAR
HOW MUCH DESTABILIZATION WILL OCCUR FARTHER NORTH INTO NRN GA/SC
WHERE CLOUDS/PRECIPITATION WILL LIMIT HEATING. DURING THE OVERNIGHT
HOURS DESTABILIZATION IS POSSIBLE ALONG THE CAROLINA COAST. IF
SUFFICIENT INSTABILITY CAN SPREAD INLAND THEN A RISK OF SEVERE
SUPERCELLS/TORNADOES CAN BE EXPECTED…PRIMARY AFTER MIDNIGHT.