Francis Pym


Francis Pym took over from Lord Carrington who resigned due to the invasion. Pym was regarded as something of a 'wet' but was appointed in order to shore up Thatcher's support within her own party. He sympathised with Alexander Haig's peace processes only to be over-ruled by Thatcher. Although a member of the War Cabinet, he did not fight his corner vigorously and often gave into the demands of his Prime Minister.

Even after the war, he fell out of favour with his Prime Minister over the islands. At a news conference, Francis Pym was asked a question about the possibility of negotiating with the Argentinians over the future of the now recaptured islands. He gave a diplomat's reply, which infuriated Thatcher, who was sitting next to him. In front the world's press, she flatly contradicted him to say that there would be no negotiating over the islands' sovereignty. Shortly afterwards, he was moved aside.

Had the British failed to recapture the islands, it is possible that Francis Pym would have taken control of the Conservative Party. As it was, the victory ensured her success at the next general election.

His autobiography was published as: The Politics of Consent


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by Stephen Luscombe