Kurt Vonnegut and Slaughter-House Five

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Slaughter-House Five On May 29, 1945, twenty-one days after the Germans had surrendered to the victorious Allied armies, a father in Indianapolis received a letter from his son who had been listed as "missing in action" following the Battle of the Bulge. The youngster, an advance scout with the 106th Infantry Division, had been captured by the Germans after wandering behind enemy lines for several days. "Bayonets," as he wrote his father, "aren't much good against tanks." …

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…on the book, Vonnegut responded by claiming that only one person on the entire planet benefited from the bombing. "The raid," Vonnegut said, "didn't shorten the war by half a second, didn't free a single person from a death camp. Only one person benefited - not two or five or ten. Just one." That one person was Vonnegut who, according to his own reckoning, has received over the years about five dollars for every corpse.