Although Operation Plum Duff had utterly failed to deliver any information about the whereabouts of the Exocets and Super-Etendards, the SAS leadership in Hereford still lobbied for Operation Mikado to take place.
The SAS’s charm among the higher political and military echelons was omnipotent. On 25 May, while the SAS patrol was freezing at the bridge waiting for their liaison and while the Sea King aircrew was being found by the Chileans, two Argentine Super-Etendards attacked MV Atlantic Conveyor with two Exocets and sunk it.
The supply ship was carrying ammunition for the landing forces and bombs for the Harriers. Its most important cargo, however, were the Wessex and Chinook helicopters that were destined to airlift the ground forces towards Stanley, the capital of the Falklands. With their transport method at the bottom of the cold Atlantic, the marines and paras would have to walk the whole length of the East Falkland to reach their objectives.
Furthermore, the loss of the Atlantic Conveyor made imperative the need for Operation Mikado to take place.