Why is the flag backwards on US soldier’s uniforms? The patch is worn with the field of blue in the upper right on the fatigues of US soldiers serving in peacekeeper roles overseas rather than in the upper left. Isn’t that backwards? What is the reason?
AFAIK, the flag patch is always worn with the blue field toward the front of the body.
I think the “backwards” flag is a relatively recent development. Until Desert Storm, I never saw one. The idea is that if you are carrying a flag or if a flag is flying from your vessel (Space Shuttle, 747, etc.) then the blue field will be facing forward (i.e., toward the mast/staff). So the “backwards” flag represents a flag being flown that it viewed from the other side.
If you look a gathering, such as Congress, you’ll notice that the vertically-hung American flag has the blue field on the left. Most people would probably just rotate a flag 90º if they wanted to hang it vertically, putting the blue field on the right, which is incorrect. According to “flag etiquette”, the blue field should be on the left so that it is “always over the viewer’s heart”. If on a coffin, then the blue field would be over the deceased’s heart.
The flag patch on the upper left sleeve (in the case of Army troops above the division/command patch), goes with the star field on the upper/forward corner (the commonly seen “upper left” pattern)
However I had not until now heard of a Right sleeve flag patch and had never seen one (AFAIKnew the rt. sleeve only got the patch from the command you served with in wartime). But I can see how this could be necessary in a situation where you are mixing up a multinational force many of whom wear essentially the same camo pattern field uniforms. In which case the previous replies would have it right, the flag is represented as if would look if you were flying it from a staff and moving forward.
Could the Velma expand on the particular instance in which this was spotted?