E.S. Turner

  • Monty: The Field-Marshal 1944-1976 by Nigel Hamilton
    Hamish Hamilton, 996 pp, £15.00, June 1986, ISBN 0 241 11838 7

It seemed to me, when editing Soldier in 1946, that a blown-up colour photograph of Monty’s ‘fruit salad’, his massed rows of medal ribbons, would make a good front cover. Would he agree to lend our photographer his battle-dress blouse, a garment as glorious and sacred as the High Priest’s breastplate? We need not have doubted. He also gave us a key to the ribbons, some of which – like the Order of Nicham-Iftikhar (Tunisia) and the Order of Ouissam-Alouite (Morocco) – might have baffled even a crowned head. It was all part of the Monty service, or, as some would say, publicity service.

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