Comedian Bob Hope (right) with dancers Harold and Fayard Nicholas in a dance step aboard the aircraft carrier USS Ticonderoga (CV-14), December 1965.
Humor has always been a part of military life. Outside the military, humor about the services can be an acknowledgement of the special nature of the military community and how much civilians owe to those who serve. Unfortunately, humor can also be used negatively to denigrate the purpose and life of the military.
Within the military, under the stress of military operations or training, spontaneous humor is a way to deal with the pressure and form bonds of common experience. As one man put it when facing the USMC Basic School’s obstacle course, "It takes a sense of humor and sarcasm."
Therefore, there is a huge body of humorous stories -- both long and short -- and cartoons, as well as songs and shows by comedians, all with the military as the theme and subject matter. To find examples, at Fort Leonard Wood, MO, the Library has dedicated a big section to humor, both Political, and Literary, much of which is military related.
Military Jokes from Readers Digest
There is no end to military jokes, a species that goes back to ancient times. Readers Digest has a long tradition of including "Humor in Uniform" military jokes in every issue, many of them collected at this link.
More Military Humor
Military Jokes. Military jokes and army humor, ranging from jokes about the Air Force to jokes about the Navy.
Military quotes, mottos, jokes and humor. This site is possibly the largest collection of military quotes and mottos on the internet. Famous and infamous, over 1500 quotes and 400 mottos, historical and modern.
The Lighthouse Joke is an old Navy story. Not true, but a good story.
Sad Sack Net Comics, The Official Sad Sack Comics Web Site, honors the comic strip creator George Baker who worked for Disney before going into the Army in 1941. He created Sad Sack, the bewildered civilian trying to adapt to Army life (usually failing). Sergeant Baker was put on the staff of Yank Magazine where his cartoons were immensely popular.
Recommended Book of Miliary Humor
Find More Information on the Internet
There are many fine websites that have additional information on this
topic, too many to list here and too many to keep up with as they come and go.
Use this Google web search form to get an up to date report of what's out there.
For good results, try entering this: military ~humor. Then click the Search button.