Sunday, September 30, 2007

More to this story?

photo added to blog post from Irish Times 17 October

At National Review's The Corner, Mark Steyn claims --

at Shannon, on the west coast of Ireland. The US military's use of the airport is not popular with an Irish public extremely hostile to the Iraq war. So on this occasion the plane landed and a charming colleen came on board and explained that a special separate area had been set up with food and drink but that uniformed servicemen would not be permitted in the main terminal. The very senior Pentagon official on board politely explained why this was grossly insulting and not acceptable, and, after consultations with her superior, the colleen escorted the passengers into the public terminal to enjoy the life-shortening pleasures of the full Irish breakfast.

This is in the context of claims that troops are not allowed into the main terminal building in Oakland, Calif. But since visitors to Shannon regularly report sightings of American troops in the terminal -- not least in the duty free shop (see above) -- it's not clear whether Steyn's incident is (a) true or (b) reflects some one-off incident.

UPDATE: Through the miracle of the Internet, Steyn has clarified when the incident took place. Revisit his link above. As he explains, it's not consistent with the generally friendly reception for American troops at Shannon, despite the unpopularity of the policy. Indeed, the troops had adapted enough to the local customs to be smoking in the toilets.

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