ME and Ophelia

Sunday, June 07, 2009

Brown booed by heroes at D-Day ceremony:  
Boos and calls of "where's the Queen?"

Note that the following report by BBC News apportions no blame to Gordon Brown. My late father, who served 25 years in Royal Army Medical Corps, would be rolling around in his grave if he knew the Queen had been excluded from yesterday's D-Day ceremony in France and that the French classed it as a Franco-American event. I am too angry and upset to write my own commentary on reports filed here over past week. Will do, if and when I have calmed down and Gordon Brown is not out by next week. Cranking up this blog after such a long hiatus is taking a little time.

From BBC News
17:14 GMT, Saturday, 6 June 2009 18:14 UK

Brown booed at D-Day ceremony

The Prime Minister has been booed as he arrived at a ceremony to commemorate the 65th anniversary of the D-Day landings.

Boos and calls of "where's the Queen?" could be heard as he arrived at the final part of the day's events in Arromanches, in reference to the failure of the French government to invite the Queen to the commemorations.

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France admits not inviting the Queen to 65th D-Day anniversary

France has confirmed that it has not "personally" invited the Queen to the 65th anniversary of D-Day on June 6 but said that she was "naturally welcome", following reports that Buckingham palace had been snubbed.

Soldier on Normandy beach: France admits not inviting the Queen to 65th D-Day anniversary
Normandy beach Photo: PA

A government spokesman said that this year's anniversary of the Normandy landings was "first and foremost a Franco-American ceremony given the recent election of President (Barack) Obama".

"There will be other June 6," said Luc Chatel, from President Nicolas Sarkozy's ruling right-wing UMP party.

France, he said, had sent an invitation to the British government, after receiving a request for one, but that it was not up to Paris to "designate British representation" at the D-Day event, he said.

"The Queen of England, the head of the British state, is naturally welcome. Buckingham Palace has confirmed that it did not receive an invitation to the event, according to the normal protocol.

Presidents Sarkozy and Obama are to take part in a D-Day ceremony at the American cemetery of Colleville-sur-Mer, which overlooks Omaha beach on the Normandy coast. The two leaders will then hold a bilateral summit.

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Queen welcome at D-Day memorial, France says

Queen welcome at D-Day memorial, France saysAFP/File – Queen Elizabeth II, seen here in Wigan earlier this month, is more than welcome to attend a commemoration …

PARIS (AFP) – France insisted on Wednesday that the queen would be welcome to attend a commemoration of the D-Day landings, denying reports that she had been snubbed.

French President Nicolas Sarkozy will be joined by US President Barack Obama and Prime Minister Gordon Brown at the Normandy landings commemoration in northern France, on June 6.

But the queen has not specifically received an invitation from the French government, even though she was present for the 60th anniversary event in 2004, amid claims in the press that she was annoyed at being excluded.

A spokesman for the French government, Luc Chatel, said France had invited Britain to attend the ceremony and that it was up to Brown's government to decide who was to represent it.

"The Queen of England, as British head of state, is naturally welcome," he said, briefing reporters after a French cabinet meeting. "It's not up to France to decide who will represent Britain.

"Our contacts on this ceremony were members of the British government who wanted to take part in a ceremony which was from the start Franco-American," he said.

"June 6, 2009 is primarily a Franco-American ceremony," Chatel added, noting that the US president traditionally came to Normandy in his first year of office.

Earlier, a Buckingham Palace spokesman had said: "No invitation has been issued as yet to any member of the royal family." He would not comment on whether one had been expected.

The Daily Mail, which headlined its story: "Palace Fury At D-Day Snub To Queen", quoted an unnamed seniorBuckingham Palace source saying the royals had been keen to support the event and the situation was "very frustrating".

The D-Day celebrations mark the anniversary of the allied landings in France, then occupied by Nazi Germany, in 1944 which marked a vital turning point in the course of World War II.

Obama Beach

D-Day ceremony in France, 06 June 2009

Photo: D-Day ceremony in France, Saturday, 06 June 2009. (Source: Mail on Sunday via comments at Guido Fawkes' blog)
# posted by Ingrid J. Jones @ 6/07/2009
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