1979 – 1990
In many ways presaging the “Reagan revolution” in the United States, Margaret Thatcher led a rejuvenation of the conservative movement in the United Kingdom. An ardent anti-communist, Thatcher received the moniker “Iron Lady” from the Soviet newspaper, “The Red Star.” Thatcher provided the perfect partner for Ronald Reagan, and together, they renewed the “special relationship” that formed the lynchpin of the post-war Atlantic Alliance. Thatcher’s finest moment may have been her vigorous defense of Britain’s colonial outpost in the Falkland Islands. The military junta ruling Argentina launched an invasion of what they referred to as the Malvinas Islands. In a sharp, short military action, the UK expelled the Argentinian forces, and restored some small luster to Britain’s former imperial pretensions. Thatcher reigned through the close of the Cold War, and is Britain’s longest serving prime minister.
Time: Late War
Removed after event: Yes
Along with Five Year Plan and Duck and Cover, a great US event for the USSR. The Iron Lady is more explicitly and unconditionally favorable to the USSR, and a great choice for an AR1 Argentina coup. Even if you have no intention of attacking Argentina, it’s a good source of initiative by creating a small threat for the US while you do something else with the 3 Ops. The VP loss is minimal, the UK influence loss is laughable, and the only real consequence is that you can’t play Socialist Governments any more. Which is unfortunate (since a Socialist Governments headline + AR1 Europe Scoring remains one of the best sources of VP for the USSR), but it’s a speculative cost, and at least you have Pershing II Deployed to substitute in its place.
Rules clarification: you may not trigger The Iron Lady, then play influence adjacent to Argentina if you did not previously have access to those countries. This is because the influence placement rules restrict you to placing influence in countries adjacent to your existing influence at the beginning of the Action Round.
Better known in our gaming group as “Thatcher the Betrayer”, there is very little point to playing The Iron Lady for the event. The usual caveats about being at +19 or -19 apply, but even in the Late War, it is very dubious indeed to trade 3 Ops and potential loss of a critical battleground for 1 VP, a speculative Socialist Governments block, and the elimination of USSR UK influence (usually 0).
If the USSR already controls Argentina, then the Socialist Governments block / 1 VP begins to look a little more attractive, but on the whole I don’t think I’ve ever seen the US play this for the event.