Anorak News | Camilla’s Poppycock-up

Camilla’s Poppycock-up

by | 31st, October 2006

“‘ISLAMIC’ CAMILLA DUMPS POPPY,” announces the Express’ front page.

The Duchess of Cornwall has been “accused of insulting British servicemen after removing a Remembrance Day poppy,” adds the paper.

This red plastic poppy was not worn between Camilla’s teeth nor was it draped rakishly over one ear or pushed through an earlobe but attached to the breast of her cream trouser suit. Camilla is on a tour of Pakistan and wants to look her best. But that poppy is ruining the ensemble.

The poppy has to go. A senior royal aide tells the paper: “It was catching on her scarf so she was advised it was best to take it off.” The scarf? “She was advised it was better to wear the scarf rather than the poppy.”

For the record, the scarf is cream in colour. As the Express notes, it is a cashmere “Islamic-style” dupatta scarf, “warn to show respect for the traditions of her Muslim, host.”

And to the Express it is emblematic of a deeper problem. “Emblem of our heroes gets in way of her Muslim scarf,” says the front-page. This is not any scarf. This is a Muslim scarf.

We have long laboured under the belief that all scarves are born with a tabula rasa; they are not defined by the religion or beliefs of their parent sheep or, as is the case with cashmere, goat.

The very idea of Muslims scarf makes us look at clothes with a keener eye. And while we size up Prince Charles’ Buddhist suit and Calvinist tie, the Express hears from the offended.

John Clarke MBE, vice present of a Royal British Legion branch and secretary of the Monte Casino Veterans’ Association, is “absolutely disgusted”.

Says he: “I am a proud old soldier who is a proud royalist, but this makes me so angry…To snub us for the headscarf is an insult for anyone, let alone someone in her position.”

Indeed. But what was that about a headscarf? Surely, he means scarf? But no matter. Mr Clarke is 83. He sells poppies in a supermarket near his home in Chorlton, Manchester, and if he says it’s a headscarf, then so be it. Didn’t he fight a war for the right to call a scarf a headscarf if he wanted to?

And, in any case, the scarf is not Camilla’s biggest fashion statement. “Haven’t we seen that look before, Camilla,” asks the Mail. This is a rhetorical question, as the Mail positions a picture of Camilla dressed in shalwar kameez of a style not unlike that won by her predecessor Princess Diana in 1996.

The Mail finds it “impossible” not the draw comparisons between Camilla and Di. And Camilla comes out of quite well, being labelled “elegant”.

Not that she’ll ever be England’s rose, let alone its poppy…

Posted: 31st, October 2006 | In: Tabloids Comment | TrackBack | Permalink