Tweeting soldier under fire

A soldier from Stranraer is in serious trouble with the MoD after using the social messaging service Twitter to send a “racist” tweet from his girlfriend’s home in Newton Stewart to pop singer Lily Allen.

But a close friend of sniper Harry Wilson, who has served in Afghanistan, told the Gazette the 21-year-old lance corporal’s bad grammar had changed the meaning of the sentence.

The controversial tweet was sent to Ms Allen by Wilson while he was waiting for his girlfriend to finish work. It read: “All the best with your new family just seen you bought s*** I meant adopted a child from Africa #hero.”

But the source said Wilson should have put in a comma after the word “bought”. He added: “This has been a huge misunderstanding. The boy hasn’t got a racist bone in his body.”

It was then re-tweeted by the singer leading to a storm of protest from others on Twitter who branded Wilson a racist. Ms Allen then complained to the MoD, which launched an investigation after assuring the singer “appropriate action” would be taken.

Wilson, who joined the Royal Scots Borderers, 1st Battalion the Royal Regiment of Scotland, three years ago, was grilled all day on Wednesday by army top brass and his punishment, at the time of going to press, was undecided with dismissal still a possibility.

Wilson’s Twitter account was taken down after the storm broke on Tuesday and Lily Allen’s account was taken down yesterday after the incident went viral with a barrage of abusive Tweets either defending or attacking the soldier and/or the singer.

Her last two Tweets read: “So let me get this straight it’s ‘he was just harassing you, not racially harassing you’. Ah, ok then.”

She later added: “The stupi­dity of some people … is astounding.”

Wilson, who is highly regarded by his superiors, was supposed to be on leave until the end of the week but has returned early to barracks.