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Schwarzkopf a Knight, But Don't Call Him Sir

Schwarzkopf a Knight, But Don't Call Him Sir

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TAMPA, Fla. (AP) - Gen. H. Norman Schwarzkopf, America's

Gulf War hero, formally became Britain's as well Monday when

Queen Elizabeth II bestowed an honorary knighthood on him.

"It was marvelous. She is a lovely lady. `She just said

`I would like to present you with this medal,"' Schwarzkopf

said after the private ceremony. "I think they go out of

their way to make sure people like me don't get nervous."

The royal entourage later flew to Texas.

Schwarzkopf was given a crimson-ribboned, two-cross medallion

in his MacDill Air Force Base office. He later beamed through

drizzling rain as he displayed it on the steps of the U.S.

Central Command headquarters.

The four-star general is now Honorary Knight Commander in

the Military Division of the Most Honorable Order of the

Bath. He is the 58th American since World War II to receive

an honorary knighthood, which entitles him to use the initials

"KCB" after his name but not the title "sir." That's reserved

for Britons only.

"I don't think anybody is going to call me `Sir Norman.'

A few people may call me general, sir," Schwarzkopf quipped.

Since his return from Saudi Arabia last month, Schwarzkopf

has been touted as a potential political candidate, addressed

a joint session of Congress, showered with accolades during

a Kentucky Derby Parade, and was given a Tampa Stadium welcome

featuring marching bands and Mickey Mouse.

The 56-year-old general, who plans to retire this August, also

is fielding book deals offering as much as $4 million in advance.

The knighting capped a two-hour tour of the city by the 65-year-old

queen, her husband, Prince Philip, and a royal entourage.

The royal couple sailed into Tampa from Miami aboard the

royal yacht Britannia and were greeted at Harbour Island by

200 schoolchildren singing "We Are The World."

The queen greeted an invitation-only gathering of 500, including

British expatriates, at a downtown pedestrian mall.

At a University of Tampa reception, local political, civic

and religious dignitaries were on hand when Tampa Mayor Sandy

Freedman presented the monarch with an 18-inch crystal palm tree.

As the entourage prepared to leave, the queen noticed a woman

standing behind a roped-off area holding a small bouquet.

"Is that for me?" the queen asked, and Linda White, a designer

for a Tampa florist, nodded and presented the flowers to her.

At MacDill, Schwarzkopf gave the queen a tour of the U.S.

Central Command war room and crisis action center.

"This is, in fact, where most of the initial planning for

the deployment of our forces took place," Schwarzkopf told

the queen, as a battery of maps flashed locations of ships

still in the Persian Gulf and states of readiness labeled

"cocked pistol," "apple jack" and "hot box."

When the queen climbed aboard a jeeplike Humvee, rain intensified.

She was wrapped in a poncho and shielded by an umbrella as she was

driven along a flight line of 60 F-16 fighter jets.

At a hangar, she inspected a fighter jet and talked with

military families, including troops from Operation Desert

Storm and Royal Air Force pilots.

In Texas, the queen will spend three days visiting Austin,

San Antonio, Dallas and Houston. After her arrival Monday

afternoon in Austin, she praised the state's colorful history

and Texans' pride.

"No state commands such fierce pride and loyalty. Lesser

mortals are pitied for their misfortune in not being born

Texans," she told a cheering crowd of several thousand who

had waited for hours on the Capitol lawn.

The royal couple are hosts at a thank-you dinner Wednesday

night at the Houston Museum of Fine Arts before the queen heads

for Lexington, Ky., and a weekend at a horse farm. Prince Philip

is to head home directly from Texas.


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