War of words over Jacko's badge

TROUBLED pop superstar Michael Jackson has today got a fresh fight on his hands – he is being taken on by an 87-yea-old war veteran from Ipswich.Second World War veteran Terry Miles has hit out at the moonwalking pop star and suspected paedophile after he walked into an American courthouse sporting a British army badge.

TROUBLED pop superstar Michael Jackson has today got a fresh fight on his hands – he is being taken on by an 87-yea-old war veteran from Ipswich.

Second World War veteran Terry Miles has hit out at the moonwalking pop star and suspected paedophile after he walked into an American courthouse sporting a British army badge.

The King of Pop walked into the court in Santa Maria, California on Friday amid more than 1,000 fans and a media frenzy.

But upon his jacket, the 45-year-old American sported a British army badge – recognised by Ipswich veteran Mr Miles as the emblem used by the Royal Army Service Corps.

And the 87-year-old ex-member saw red when he noticed the army badge being treated as a fashion statement.

To Mr Miles, Jackson's attire was nothing less than "an insult to Queen and country".

Most Read

Mr Miles said: "My wife pointed it out to me in the paper. I was disgusted. My insides went berserk.

"That badge, being worn by any other nationality, is to me an insult to our Queen and country.

"It means everything to me as a soldier. I think the man should be stopped from wearing it. When I was a young man, if you bought an army coat, you took off the buttons that had the crest.

"That man had man a mistake," he added sternly.

Mr Miles joined the army on the eve of the Second World War in 1938 – and still has vivid memories of his wartime service.

When war broke out, Mr Miles with the Royal Army Service Corps on the French-Belgian border.

He said: "When Germany invaded Poland, we went over the border into and went as far as Brussels. It was sickening. There were bodies everywhere.

"The Germans drove us back to Dunkirk in June 1940. We took a lot of boys to Dunkirk in our lorries.

"At the last moment, we drove the lorries into the sea and lashed them all together in the low tide. We eventually got to the boat. We got off and the Germans deposited a landmine about 50 yards away."

After Dunkirk, Mr Miles was posted to West Africa, before heading to India.

He said: "We were lucky on the journey. We had about 15-20 ships in our convey, but none were sunk, even though there were German U-boats everywhere."

After reaching India, Mr Miles was stationed in Burma until the end of the war, until being de-mobbed in 1946.

The Royal Army Service Corps was renamed The Royal Corps of Transport in 1965. This then merged with other corps to become the Royal Logistics Corps in 1993.

Jackson has pleaded not guilty to his seven charges of sexually abusing a 12-year-old cancer victim and two of plying him with alcohol.

The singer is next due to appear before the court on February 13.

Become a Supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years. Our industry faces testing times, which is why we're asking for your support. Every contribution will help us continue to produce local journalism that makes a measurable difference to our community.

Become a Supporter