‘Clever Endeavor’ Not So Clever After All

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A soldier’s wryly humorous April Fool’s joke has apparently upset authorities in U.S. Army Europe (Forward) headquarters in Kaposvar, Hungary.

The joke was an unofficial takeoff on Daily Endeavor, the command information newspaper for U.S. forces in Hungary. Entitled Clever Endeavor, the six-page document pokes fun at the entire chain of command, and showed up in the dining facility at nearby Taszar on April 1, according to Army sources.

Message to the troops

Among the passages in the paper is a message to the troops from “President Bubba“. In one biting line, “Bubba” notes that he named the peacekeeping mission in Bosnia Operation Joint Endeavor “to remind me of my college days,” a reference to Clinton’s admission that he smoked marijuana while he was studying at Oxford University, England.

Much of the rest to be found in Clever Endeavor consists of barbed jokes about the protection measures in place for U.S. forces in Hungary, which the publication’s author portrays as making troops feel like virtual captives in their own camps.

Authorities not amused

While some troops found the newspaper amusing, Army authorities in Hungary weren’t laughing. The April 2 edition of Daily Endeavor included an article headlined “Clever Endeavor not so clever”, which listed a series of Uniform Code of Military Justice laws that can be broken in putting out a publication like Clever Endeavor.

According to the official newspaper, these include Article 88, which makes it a crime to use “contemptuous words, personal in nature, against the Commander in Chief”.

The indivisual who put out the paper has not been identified, and U.S. Army Europe (Forward) Provost Marshal Lt. Col. Lee Colbert said MPs had done “absolutely no police work … on the matter.”

No further editions of Clever Endeavor have appeared, said U.S. Army Europe (Forward) spokesman Lt. Col. Ron Williams.


By Sean D. Naylor
Army Times
May 6, 1996

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