ARMY CAMP: 30 POSTCARDS THAT DO ASK AND DO TELL is not a retro sendup of a vanished era by some artist like Benoit Prevot or Bruce McCall, but at times the owner might think so. A few of these 30 cards are out of the British Commonwealth and some are from World War I, but most are American during World War II. Wartime standards were different -- relaxed, even -- and while G.I. Joes kept pinups to remind them of what they were fighting for, homefront audiences were exposed (so to speak) to a fair amount of semi-nudity from our boys in the fighting forces. Even LIFE magazine ran photo spreads of young, bearded soldiers bathing and shaving in strategically-placed lagoons and beaches whose waters dangled temptingly below the belly button. Shortly after the war, Rodgers & Hammerstein's SOUTH PACIFIC documented tropic-climate shirtlessness and the inevitable drag characters in talent shows, although the composers were careful to have the noncoms sing, "There Is Nothing Like A Dame." The cards in ARMY CAMP show the extent that a little butt cleavage and the thigh-haunch-hip combination, shown in profile, could be exploited by cheerfully cooperative illustrators without quite uncovering 'old glory.' (Bear in mind, this was years before the term "beefcake" entered the language.) These drawings were commissioned not only by the Armed Services but by civilian agencies, too, and in several hilarious instances by Cannon Towels, whose strategic use of product was the only thing that kept the boys from going Full Monty. The intent was not really homoeroticism, but by the time Slim Pickens hopped on and yi-haa'ed an H-bomb down to Ground Zero in the movie DR. STRANGELOVE twenty years later, these naïve effusions from the front were already starting to look funny to a more Freud-aware audience. Whether the recipient of this nicely crafted book of cards has a Queer Eye or just an appreciation of the irony of social standards, ARMY CAMP POSTCARDS are likely to steal a march. No strangers to line extension, the publishers have also made available to the American market the Army Camp! Journal, reviewed separately.