The heir to the British throne, Prince William, also happens to be a helicopter pilot in the Royal Air Force -- which means that from time to time he must take part in actual military missions, even when they have a whiff of colonialism. Starting this evening, Prince William begins his six-week deployment to the Falklands Island, where he'll be one of four Royal Air Force pilots stationed at the UK's base there.
It's a bit surprising that the Britain's Air Force is sending its eventual king to an actual conflict area; The UK and Argentina (which calls the islands of its coast the Malvinas) each claim sovereignty there, having fought an undeclared war for control in 1982. The Telegraph reports that tensions over the islands have been ratcheted up recently.
So while it's safe to presume given the headline-grabbing announcement of his deployment that the prince will be out of harm's way (Prince Harry's deployment to Iraq in 2007, if you recall, was canceled as too dangerous.), Argentina isn't happy about the colonial implications of foreign royalty occupying their territory. "The Argentinian people regret that the royal heir is coming to the soil of the homeland with the uniform of the conqueror and not with the wisdom of a statesman who works in the service of peace and dialogue between nations," the Argentinian government said in a statement according to CNN.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.