Why do we have to speak English? An officer in the U.S. Naval reserve was attending a conference that included admirals from both the U.S. Navy and the French Navy. At a cocktail reception, he found himself in a small group that included personnel from both navies . The French admiral started complaining that whereas Europeans learned many languages, Americans learned only English. He then asked "Why is it that we have to speak English in these conferences rather than you speak French?" Without hesitating, the American Admiral replied, "Maybe it's because the Brits, Canadians, Aussies and Americans arranged it so you would not have to speak in German." The group became silent.