Wednesday, January 07, 2009

Satire is Dead: Army sends out "Dear John Doe" letters to dead soldiers families

The Army is apologizing for sending out letters to the families of dead soldiers beginning with the words "Dear John Doe..."

The situation evokes the famous passage in Joseph Heller's "Catch-22" where General Dreedle wants to send out letters that say "Dear Mrs., Mr., Miss, or Mr. and Mrs.: Words cannot express the deep personal grief I experienced when your husband, father, or brother was killed, wounded or reported missing in action.'"

Unintentionally echoing Dreedle's sentiment, Brig. Gen. Reuben D. Jones, Army adjutant general, said, "There are no words to adequately apologize for this mistake or for the hurt it may have caused."

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