Tam Dalyell at Edinburgh Book Festival 2012

This article is from 2012

Tam Dalyell: Still raising Falklands questions 30 years on

On Falklands, nuclear war and giving his home to the nation

As the title of his memoir, The Importance of Being Awkward, attests, former Labour MP Tam Dalyell has never been one to toe the party line. From the beginning of his parliamentary career in 1962, up to his retiral in 2005, Dalyell was a vocal critic of British foreign policy, opposing the invasion of Iraq and branding Tony Blair a war criminal.

At an event with Professor of Peace Studies at Bradford University, Paul Rogers, he will be discussing his opposition to the Falklands War. He feels that the 1982 conflict was waged by Margaret Thatcher and Argentinean President Galtieri for ‘domestic political reasons’ rather than for the good of the islands. Victory for Britain ‘transformed the fortunes of the Prime Minister,’ he argues, ‘who in the March 1982 opinion polls was ranked lower than any previous Prime Minister, and went on to become the winner of a general election.’

Dalylell will appear in two other Edinburgh Book Festival events. He will discuss the role that the USSR had in the history of nuclear weapons with professor Paul Broda, and talk with Merlin Waterson about having donated his home to National Trust of Scotland.

15 Aug, 4.30pm, £10 (£8); 23 Aug (with Paul Broda), 5pm, £10 (£8); 20 Aug (with Merlin Waterson), 3.30pm, £10 (£8).

Paul Broda with Tam Dalyell: Both My Fathers Were Spies

Professor Paul Broda grew up with a father, and then a stepfather, who both passed Allied secrets about atomic weapons to the Soviet Union in 1942. One of those men was Allan Nunn May, who was jailed and vilified. In this event Broda discusses with Tam Dalyell his view that they both believed the USSR could prevent the…

Merlin Waterson with Tam Dalyell: Why We Gave Our Home To The Nation

In April 1946, Tam Dalyell's parents handed over their property to the National Trust for Scotland, as long as their son could continue to live there. The Dalyells are among countless families that have donated their homes to the nation over the past century. In A Noble Thing, historian Merlin Waterson explores what…

Tam Dalyell: The Falklands War: Truth And Lies

Margaret Thatcher's war with Argentina transformed her standing in the polls and would change British politics for a generation. Labour MP Tam Dalyell was a vehement critic of Thatcher, describing her command to sink the General Belgrano as nothing less than a war crime. 30 years on, the Falklands is a political hot…

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