December 20, 2005

YOU'RE ON YOUR OWN, TOMMY (via Rick Turley):

We won't be seen to support the war, says M&S as it refuses to send gifts to British troops (Colin Freeman in Baghdad and Jasper Copping, 18/12/2005, Daily Telegraph)

[W]ith Christmas just around the corner, soldiers from the Royal Irish Regiment wrote to five leading stores back home and asked for some stocking-fillers to give the troops next weekend.

But not only were they dismayed to get nothing more than a solitary teddy bear from Harrods, they have been told by Marks & Spencer that it cannot give them any gifts in case it is seen as support for the war.

James Norrie, the M&S customer services manager wrote: "We do appreciate that work like yours is very valuable but unfortunately it is simply not possible for us to support every request. Please be assured that community work is very important to us."

But when contacted by the Sunday Telegraph, Mr Norrie insisted that the request had been properly considered, adding: "The letter I sent was what I had been instructed to send by my supervisor, who said we couldn't send anything out as it would look like we would be supporting the war in Iraq. To my understanding, we can't be seen to be supporting the Labour Government's war."

Posted by Orrin Judd at December 20, 2005 6:36 PM

In Britain I guess the equivalent of our Democrats say, "AND we DON'T support the troops!"

Posted by: pj at December 20, 2005 7:48 PM

Wow, that's harsh. Any chance Mr. Norrie will be available to spit on the solders when they come home? After all, they're making him look bad.

Posted by: Mike Beversluis at December 20, 2005 8:14 PM

An' it's Tommy this an' Tommy that, an' Chuck 'im out, the Brute!

Posted by: Mikey at December 20, 2005 10:37 PM

"To my understanding, we can't be seen to be supporting the Labour Government's war".

Shades of Robert Dole and his shoot-himself-in-the-foot "Democrat Wars" quip.

Posted by: Ed Driscoll at December 21, 2005 12:37 AM


You beat me to it. But here's the link.

Posted by: Peter B at December 21, 2005 4:23 AM

Bah Humbug to M&S. It's an opportunity for John Lewis or Harvey Nicks.

Never mind, Oliver's Army has a cracking new Forces' Sweetheart.

Posted by: Brit at December 21, 2005 4:38 AM

"Cracking" indeed.

Posted by: Michael Herdegen [TypeKey Profile Page] at December 21, 2005 7:26 PM

Isn't M&S owned by a Muslim from the sunny climes east of Suez?

Posted by: Robert Schwartz at December 22, 2005 2:02 AM


Don't think so. It's a PLC.

Are you thinking of Harrods, which is owned by Mohamed Al-Fayed (Egyptian, and father of Dodi who was killed in the same car as Diana)?

Posted by: Brit at December 22, 2005 7:44 AM