Essay: Of Time and the Falklands

The Falklands crisis blew up weirdly—out of nowhere, it seemed, or out of another century. It was a little too dangerous to remain as diverting as it seemed at first. Still, people mentioned The Mouse That Roared. The sheer oddness of it jarred the imagination. Just as the late 20th century was elaborating new anxieties about nuclear war, its gaze flicking distractedly over the future, abruptly the 19th century came barging into the room: a plumed, anachronistic production of outraged empire in its panoply and high rhetoric. The British fleet steamed out of...

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