Confederate Flags Stolen From South Georgia Cemetery

Police near Georgia’s coast are investigating a report that 70 Confederate flags were stolen from the graves of soldiers who fought in the American Civil War.

The local Sons of Confederate Veterans traditionally place the flags on Confederate soldiers’ graves in Oak Grove Cemetery on Confederate Memorial Day in April, an official holiday in Georgia and other southern states. They were reported missing on Aug. 18.

A local leader of the group, James Carter, said he believes the small replicas of the third official flag of the Confederate States of America were targeted because they include the familiar battle emblem.

“You wouldn’t go through any other cemetery removing American flags from graves,” Carter told The Florida Times-Union. “These are men who answered the call of their state,” he said, “just like Union soldiers answered the calls of their states.”

Actually, the American Legion advises its members to remove flags from graves as soon as possible after displaying them each Memorial Day. And in federal cemeteries, groups displaying U.S. or Confederate flags at gravesites are required to remove them no later than the first business day after the holiday.