Soldier Wants Direct Apology
WEST ALLIS - Discount-Mats.com fired the employee who sent a controversial e-mail to a U.S. soldier in Iraq, but now the soldier wants a direct apology from the company.
Sergeant Jason Hess e-mailed the West Allis-based Discount-Mats.com to ask whether the company could ship an order of gym mats to an Army Post Office (APO) box. The on-line business is not registered to send packages to APO boxes, so a Discount-Mats.com employee e-mailed the soldier to tell him it was not possible. But in the e-mail, the Discount-Mats.com employee wrote, "...we would NEVER ship to Iraq. If you were sensible, you and your troops would pull out of Iraq."
That e-mail response sparked an international controversy. Furious people e-mailed and called the Web site owner's house and left obscene messages. One caller ranted, "terrorist loving son of a ((expletive)). Get the ((expletive)) out of America. We don't want your kind here. Piece of ((expletive)).
The company's owner, 23-year-old Faisal Khetani, said he fired the employee who sent the e-mail. He told TODAY'S TMJ4 reporter Mick Trevey the e-mail does not represent the views of the company.
Ramzan Khetani, the owner's dad, said, "I am ready to apologize you know - on their behalf. Because that is not the right way to talk to anybody."
But the soldier who received the controversial e-mail wrote reporter Trevey Tuesday to say he had not received any apology directly from the company.
"They should have emailed me for one, my email (address) is posted everywhere so they cannot say we don't have it," Hess said.
A message left on Faisal Khetani's cell phone Tuesday was not returned.
The 1st Cavalry News, out of Ft Hood, Tex., reported that according to Hess, who works doing construction - painting as well as repair-type jobs involving work orders for the 1st Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division, the purpose of the mats was to prevent wear and tear on office furniture and keep dust down in the brigade’s buildings. The online report also said Hess has found another company to supply the mats.