Date: Wed, 29 May 1996 17:00:35 -0600


Subject: vowels for Bosnia

I've been away for a couple of weeks. Forgive me if you've already seen this.



Cities of Sjlbvdnzv, Grzny to Be First Recipients

Before an emergency joint session of Congress yesterday, President Clinton

announced US plans to deploy over 75,000 vowels to the war-torn region of

Bosnia. The deployment, the largest of its kind in American history, will

provide the region with the critically needed letters A,E,I,O and U, and is

hoped to render countless Bosnian names more pronounceable.

"For six years, we have stood by while names like Ygrjvslhv and Tzlynhr

and Glrm have been horribly butchered by millions around the world," Clinton

said. "Today, the United States must finally stand up and say 'Enough.' It

is time the people of Bosnia finally had some vowels in their

incomprehensible words. The US is proud to lead the crusade in this noble


The deployment, dubbed Operation Vowel Storm by the State Department, is

set for early next week, with the Adriatic port cities of Sjlbvdnzv and

Grzny slated to be the first recipients. Two C-130 transport planes, each

carrying over 500 24-count boxes of "E's," will fly from Andrews Air Force

Base across the Atlantic and airdrop the letters over the cities.

Citizens of Grzny and Sjlbvdnzv eagerly await the arrival of the vowels.

"My God, I do not think we can last another day," Trszg Grzdnjkln, 44, said.

"I have six children and none of them has a name that is understandable to

me or to anyone else. Mr. Clinton, please send my poor, wretched family

just one 'E.' Please."

If the initial airlift is successful, Clinton said the United States will

go ahead with full-scale vowel deployment, with C-130's airdropping

thousands more letters over every area of Bosnia. Other nations are

expected to pitch in as well, including 10,000 British "A's" and 6,500

Canadian "U's."

Japan, rich in A's and O's, was asked to participate, but declined.

"With these valuable letters, the people of war-ravaged Bosnia will be

able to make some terrific new words," Clinton said. "It should be very

exciting for them, and much easier for us to read their maps."

Linguists praise the US's decision to send the vowels. For decades they

have struggled with the hard consonants and difficult pronunciation of most

Slavic words. "Vowels are crucial to construction of all language," an

Illinois Institute of Technology multimedia specialist said. "Without them,

it would be difficult to utter a single word, much less organize a coherent

sentence. Please, just don't get me started on the moon-man languages they

use in those Eastern European countries."

According to the multimedia specialist who wished to remain anonymous,

once the Bosnians have vowels, they will be able to construct such valuable

sentences as: "The potatoes are ready;" "I believe it will rain." and "Can

you give me another box of ammo and a few grenades?"

The airdrop represents the largest deployment of any letter to a foreign

country since 1979. During the summer of that year, President Jimmy Carter

ordered the shipment of 92,000 consonants to Ethiopia, providing cities

like Ouaouoaua, Eaoiiuae, and Aao with vital, life-giving supplies of L's,

S's and T's. The consonant-relief effort failed, however, when vast

quantities of the letters were intercepted and horded by violent, gun-toting