Friday, June 29, 2007

Flags on Army uniforms go forward into battle

I would like to know why the American flag patches on soldiers’ uniforms have the stars in the upper right-hand corner instead of the left?
- Nancy Greene

ANSWER: The flag patch on the left shoulder of Army uniforms has the stars (the canton) on the left. On the right shoulder the flag patch has the stars on the right and appears reversed to an observer. Pentagon procedure is that the flag should always look as if it is going forward. Indeed, the words from an old hymn say, “Forward into battle.” The stars are always closest to the pole, and the flag should appear to be flowing back from the standard or flagpole.If the canton on the right shoulder had the stars on the left, it would symbolize that the soldier carrying that flag was retreating.


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