Government Intelligence

Anyone with a passing knowledge of American military history will recognize the “Big Red 1” insignia of the 1st Infantry Division. You’ll soon be able to purchase an entire line of sportswear that flaunts the historic emblem… at Sears. After days of questioning, the Army confirmed Monday the arrangement was first reached in June 2007 on the advice of an outside licensing agency, The Beanstalk Group in New York, but the full scope of the royalties to be earned has yet to be disclosed. Charles Horner, a retired Army officer, isn’t happy. He served with the 1st Division in Vietnam, as did his father in World War II, including landings in North Africa, Sicily and Normandy. “That patch is to be worn by only people who served in the 1st Division,” said Horner. “What right does the Army have to sell our patch?”

So let me see if I understand a few of the dynamics here: Sears, once a bastion of American consumerism, has now licensed an Army insignia, to the benefit of shareholders (hopefully) and taxpayers (maybe) and has decided to stop selling appliances.


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