Camp Holloway Dispensary

Pleiku, South Vietnam

APO 96318

     

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Terms & Slang from the Vietnam War

 

Numbers

4-F
Classification given to those deemed unfit for military service
50-cal
.50 caliber machine gun
51-cal
Heavy machine gun used by the enemy
79
A  M-79 grenade launcher
82 mm
A mortar used by the enemy
105
A 105-mm howitzer
201 file
A U.S. Army personnel file

A

AAR
After-action report
AC
Aircraft commander
Actual
The unit commander. Used to distinguish the commander from the radioman when the call sign is used.
ADSID
Air-delivered seismic intruder-detection device; microphone and transmitter dropped into suspect areas
Advance Guard Youth
Vietnamese student social and sports organization that evolved into a non-Communist nationalist movement by 1945.
Advanced Individual Training
Specialized training taken after Basic Training, also referred to as Advanced Infantry Training
AFVN
Armed Forced Vietnam Network radio station
Agency
The Central Intelligence Agency
AGL
Above level ground
A-gunner
Assistant gunner
AHB
Assault helicopter battalion
AHC
Assault helicopter company
AID
Agency for International Development
Airborne
Refers to soldiers who are qualified as parachutists
Air Cav
Air cavalry; helicopter-borne infantry; helicopter gunship assault teams
Airmobile
Helicopter-borne infantry
AIT
Advanced infantry training
AK-47
Soviet-manufactured Kalashnikov semi-automatic and fully automatic combat assault rifle, 7.62-mm; the basic weapon of the Communist forces. Known as the Type 56 to the Chinese, it is characterized by an explosive popping sound.
AK-50
Newer version of the AK-47. Some have a permanently mounted "illegal" triangular bayonet, which leaves a sucking wound that will not close.
ALPHA
Military phonetic for the letter 'A'
Ammo Dump
Location where live or expended ammunition is stored
Amtrack
Amphibious armored vehicle used to transport troops and supplies, armed with a .30-caliber machine gun. The Marines used them.
Angel Track
An armored personnel carrier used as an aid station
AO
Area of operations
AOD
Administrative officer on duty
Ao-Dai
Traditional dress of Vietnamese women. A brightly colored silk top worn over loose fitting silk trousers.
APC
Armored personnel carrier. A track vehicle used to transport Army troops or supplies, usually armed with a .50-caliber machine gun.
APL
Barracks ship
APO
Army post office located in San Francisco for overseas mail to Vietnam.
AR
Army regulation
ARA
Aerial rocket artillery. A Cobra AG-1H helicopter with four XM-159C 19-rocket (2.75 inch) pods.
Arc Light
Code name for B-52 bombers strikes along the Cambodian-Vietnamese border. These operations shook earth for ten miles away from the target area.
Article 15
Section of the Uniform Military Code of Justice. A form of non-judicial punishment.
Arty
Shorthand term for artillery
Arvin
Soldier in the ARVN, or the ARVN itself
ARVN
Army of the Republic of Vietnam; the South Vietnamese Regular Army
A-team
Basic ten man team of the U.S. Special Forces. The A-teams often led irregular military units which were not responsible to the Vietnamese military command.
AWOL
Absent without leave; leaving a post or position without official permission
Azimuth
A bearing from North

B

B-40 rocket
A shoulder-held rocket-propelled grenade launcher
B-52
U.S. Air Force high-altitude bomber; also, slang for a can opener
BA
Married woman; used as a title, like "Mrs."
Bac Bac
Bastardized Vietnamese for "to shoot"
Bac-si
Vietnamese for doctor; also used to refer to medic in the U.S. Army
Ballgame
An operation or a contact
Ba Moui Ba
Brand name of a Vietnamese beer (which means 33) Rumored to have formaldehyde in it
Band-Aid
Medic
Bandoliers
Belts of machine gun ammunition
BAR
Browning automatic rifle. A .30-caliber magazine-fed automatic rifle used by U.S. troops during World War II and Korea.
Base Camp
A resupply base for field units and a location for headquarters of brigade or division size units, artillery batteries and air fields. Also known as the rear area.
Basic
Basic training
Bac si de
Home-brewed rice whiskey
Basketball
An illumination-dropping aircraft mission, capable of lighting approximately a square mile of terrain
Battalion
A military unit composed of a headquarters and two or more companies, batteries, or similar units
Battery
An artillery unit equivalent to a company. Six 105mm or 155mm howitzers or two 8-inch or 175mm self-propelled howitzers.
Battle-sight zeroing
Process of adjusting a weapon's sights and windage to an individual soldier so the weapon, when fired, will hit the object of aim.
BCD
Bad conduct discharge
BDA
Bomb damage assessment
Beans and dicks
Military C-ration hot dogs and beans
Beans and Motherfuckers
Military C-ration lima beans and ham
Beaten zone
Area where the majority of bullets will strike when a machine gun is laid-in to cover a part of a defensive perimeter or part of an ambush zone.
Beehive round
An explosive artillery shell which delivered thousands of small projectiles, "like nails with fins," instead of shrapnel.
Berm
Perimeter line of a fortification; usually raised above surrounding area
Big Boys
Artillery; slang for tanks
Big Max
Maximum security section of Long Binh Stockade, fashioned out of conex containers. There was one small hole in each side for light and air; in the sun they grew quite hot. Prisoners were allowed out twice a day to use the bathroom and exercise.
Big Red One
Nickname for the 1st Infantry Division
Binh Xuyenn
The organized crime syndicate that controlled much of the Vietnamese underworld and Saigon police until deposed by Diem's forces in 1955.
Bird
Any aircraft, but usually refers to helicopters
Bird Dog
Forward air controller, usually in a small, maneuverable single-engined prop airplane
BK amputee
Below-the-knee amputation of the leg
Blood trail
A trail of blood on the ground left by a fleeing man who has been wounded
Blooker
The M-79 grenade launcher. A 40-millimeter, shotgunlike weapon that shoots spin-armed "balls" or small grenades. Also known as a blooper.
Blooper
The M-79 grenade launcher. A 40-millimeter, shotgun-like weapon that shoots spin-armed "balls" or small grenades. Also known as a blooker.
Blue feature
Any water feature. So called because of the color used to designate water on topographic maps.
Body bag
Plastic bag used to transport dead bodies from the field
Body count
The number of enemy killed, wounded, or captured during an operation. The term was used by Washington and Saigon as a means of measuring the progress of the war.
Boo-coo
Bastardized French, from beaucoup, meaning "much" or "many".
Boom-Boom
Sex
Boondoggle
Any military operation that hasn't been completely thought out. An operation that is absurd or useless.
Boonie hat
Soft hat worn by a boonierat in the boonies
Boonierat
A combat infantryman
Boonies
Infantry term for the field; jungles or swampy areas far from the comforts of civilization
Boot
A soldier just out of boot camp; inexperienced, untested
BOQ
Bachelor officer quarters; living quarters for officers
Bouncing Betty
Antipersonnel mine with two charges: the first propels the explosive charge upward, and the other is set to explode at about waist level.
Bowl
Pipe used for smoking dope
BRAVO
Military phonetic for the letter 'B'
Bravo
Army designation for the infantry man
Breaking Squelch
Disrupting the natural static of a radio by depressing the transmit bar on another radio set to the same frequency
Brigade
A tactical and administrative military unit composed of a headquarters and one or more battalions of infantry or armor, with other supporting units.
Bro
A black soldier; also, at times, boonierats from the same unit
Bronco
Twin-engine observation aircraft equipped with rockets and miniguns
Bronze Star
U.S. military decoration awarded for heroic or meritorious service no involving aerial flights
Brother
A fellow black Soldier; sometimes used as slang for all black males
Brown bar
A lieutenant; denotes the single bar of the rank. In the field, officers wore camouflage rank which was often brown or black instead of brass.
Brown Water Navy
Term applied to the U.S. Navy units assigned to the inland boat patrols of the Mekong River delta.
BS
Bullshit, as in chewing the fat, telling tall tales, or telling lies
Buckle
To fight. "Buckle for your dust" means to fight furiously
Bummer
Bad luck, a real drag
Bush
Infantry term for the field
Bust caps
Term for firing a rifle rapidly

C

C-4
Plastic, putty textured explosive carried by infantry soldiers. It burns like sterno when lit, and was used to heat C-rations in the field.
C-54
Largest of the American helicopters, strictly for cargo. Also called Flying Crane or Skycrane.
C-123
Small cargo airplane; the Caribou
C-130
Large propeller-driven Air Force planes that carry people and cargo; the Hercules
C-141
Large cargo airplane; the Starlifter
CA
Combat assault. The term is used to describe dropping troopers into a hot LZ
Cache
Hidden supplies
Camies
World War II term for camouflage uniforms
Can Cuoc
An identification card
C&C
Command and control helicopter used by reconnaissance or unit commanders
Can Lao
The powerful semisecret political party of the Diem government headed by Ngo Dinh Nhu, Diem's brother. It permeated the entire administrative, intelligence, and defense structures of South Vietnam.
Cao Dai
A religious and political sect formed in the 1920s by a group of South Vietnamese intellectuals, combining the three major religions of Vietnam -- Buddhism, Confucianism, and Christianity -- with the worship of Vietnamese and Western heroes. With a strength of more that 1,500,000 followers, groups of Cao Dai still waged a stubborn resistance war against the Communists (especially in Tay Ninh Province) even after the U.S. troop withdrawal.
CAP
Civil action program. U.S. military personnel working with Vietnamese civilians.
capping
Shooting at
CAR-15
A carbine rifle
Carbine
A short-barreled, lightweight automatic or semiautomatic rifle
Caribou
Small transport plane for moving men and material
Cav
Cavalry; the 1st Cavalry Division (Airmobile)
CC
Company commander
CG
Commanding general
Chao
Hello or goodbye, depending upon the context
CHARLIE
Military phonetic for the letter 'C"
Charlie
Viet Cong; the enemy
Charlie-Charlie
C&C
Chas
Viet Cong; the enemy
Cheap Charlie
GI who is frugal with his money while in a bar
Cherry
Slang term for youth and inexperience; a virgin
Chicom
Chinese communist
Chicom mine
Chinese mine; can be made of plastic
Chieu Hoi
The "open arms" program, promising clemency and financial aid to Viet Cong and NVA soldiers and cadres who stopped fighting and returned to South Vietnamese government authority.
Chinook
CH-47 cargo helicopter
Choi oi
Exclamation of surprise
Chop Chop
Do it fast
Chopper
Helicopter
Chuck
The Viet Cong; the enemy
CIB
Combat infantry badge. And Army award for being under enemy fire in a combat zone, worn on both fatigues and dress uniforms.
CIDG
South Vietnamese Civilian Irregular Defense Groups
CINCPAC
Commander in chief of all American forces in the Pacific region
Civilian Irregular Defense Group
American financed, irregular South Vietnamese military units which were led by members of Special Forces A-teams. Members of these units were Vietnamese nationals, but were usually members of ethnic minorities in the country.
Clacker
A small hand-held firing device for a claymore mine
Claymore
An antipersonnel mine carried by the infantry which, when detonated, propelled small steel cubes in a 60-degree fan-shaped pattern to a maximum distance of 100 meters
Clearance
Permission from both military and political authorities to engage the enemy in a particular area
Cluster Fuck
Any attempted operations which went bad; disorganized clutch belt  cartridge belt.
CMH
Congressional Medal of Honor. The highest U.S. military decoration awarded for conspicuous gallantry at the risk of life above and beyond the call of duty.
CO
Commanding officer
Cobra
An AH-1G attack helicopter. Also known as a gunship, armed with rockets and machine guns.
Cochin-china
The French name for its southern Vietnam colony, encompassing the III Corps and Mekong Delta rice-producing lowlands, which earlier was part of Cambodia.
Co Cong
Female Viet Cong members
Code of Conduct
Military rules for U.S. soldiers taken prisoner by the enemy
Comics
Topographic maps
Commo
Shorthand for "communications"
Commo bunker
Bunker containing vital communications equipment. Usually included in the last redoubt of established defensive positions.
Commo wire
Communications wire
Company
A military unit usually consisting of a headquarters and two or more platoons
Compound
A fortified military installation
Concertina wire
Coiled barbed wire used as an obstacle
Connex container
Corrugated metal packing crate, approximately six feet in length
Contact
Firing on or being fired upon by the enemy
CONUS
Continental United States
CORDS
Civil operations and revolutionary development support. Created by civilian administration, MACV, and the CIA to coordinate American pacification efforts.
COSVN
Central office of South Vietnam. Communist headquarters for military and political action in South Vietnam.
Counterinsurgency
Anti-guerrilla warfare
Country team
The staff and personnel of an American embassy assigned to a particular country
Co Van
Advisor. American assigned to Vietnamese military units or to political division within the country to help direct and train Vietnamese military and civilian officials.
Coxwain flat
The area where the coxwain (driver) stands when he steers a boat or ship
CP
Command post
CP pills
Anti-malarial pills
CQ
Charge of quarters. An officer officially in charge of a unit headquarters at night.
C-rations
Combat rations. Canned meals for use in the field. Each usually consisted of a can of some basic course, a can of fruit, a packet of some type of dessert, a packet of powdered coca, a small pack of cigarettes, and two pieces of chewing gum.
Crispy critters
Burn victims
CS
A riot-control gas which burns the eyes and mucus membranes
Cumshaw
Unofficial trading, begging, bartering, or stealing from other branches of the service
Cyclo
Motorized rickshaw

D

DA
Department of the Army
Dac Cong
Viet Cong special forces
Dai Doan Ket
Party of Great Solidarity. Organized in 1954 to unify the non-Communist nationalist organizations in South Vietnam in the period before Ngo Dinh Diem came to full power. Headed by Diem's brother, Ngo Dinh Nhu, this was the forerunner of the Can Lao.
Daily-daily
Daily anti-malarial pill
Dai uy
Vietnamese for captain
Dai Viet
Formed in 1930 as a non-Communist revolutionary and political organization throughout Vietnam. Though more widespread and with a larger membership than Ho Chi Minh's Viet Minh or Lao Dong Party, the Dai Viets were fragmented into regional factions. The assassination of Truong Tu Anh, the Dai Viet leader, in 1946 by Ho's agents further fragmented the Dai Viets. By the mid-1960s the Dai Viets had evolved into two major parties that both played key roles in opposing or supporting the various South Vietnamese governments. Since 1975, there has been severe repression against Dai Viet members, some of whom still carry on resistance to the Communist government.
Dap
Handshake and greeting which may last up to ten minutes and is characterized by the use of both hands and often comprised of slaps and snaps of the fingers. Used by black soldiers, highly ritualized and unit specific.
DAV 
          Disable American Veterans Organization
DCI
Dhe Director of the CIA
De-Americanization
Early term for Vietnamization
DELTA
Military phonetic for the letter 'D'
DEROS
Date of expected return from overseas. The day all American soldiers in Vietnam were waiting for.
Det-cord
Detonating cord used with explosives
Deuce-and-a-half
Two-and-a-half ton truck
Dew
Marijuana
DH5
Viet Cong claymore mine
DH10
Viet Cong claymore mine
Di
Go
Dicks
Derogatory expression referring to both male genitalia and the enemy
Diddy-bopping
Walking carelessly
Didi
Slang from the Vietnamese word di, meaning "to leave" or "to go"
Didi mau
Slang Vietnamese for "go quickly"
Dink
Derogatory term for an Asian
Dinky Dau
To be crazy
District team
American personnel assigned to act as advisors to Vietnamese military and civilian officials at the district level.
District Mobile Company
The major Viet Cong fighting unit organized within each district in Vietnam. The District Mobile Company was assigned to carry out various assignments from direct offensive operations to sabotage and terrorism.
DMZ
Demilitarized zone. The dividing line between North and South Vietnam established in 1954 at the Geneva Convention.
Doc
Medic or Corpsman
Dong
Unit of North Vietnamese money about equal to a penny
Doo-mommie
English approximation of the Vietnamese du ma, meaning literally "fuck mother"
Double Veteran
Having sex with a woman and then killing her made one a double veteran.
DP
Displaced person
D-ring
A  D-shaped metal snap link used to hold gear together
DRO
Dining room orderly
Drops
Reduction in length of tour caused by overall reduction and withdrawal of American forces from Vietnam.
DT's
Defensive targets
Dung lai!
stop!
Dust-Off
Medical evacuation by helicopter
DX
Direct exchange. Also, to discard or dispose of, or to kill someone.

E

Eagle flights
Large air assault of helicopters
Early-Outs
A drop or reduction in time in service. A soldier with 150 days or less remaining on his active duty commitment when he DEROSed from Vietnam also ETSed from the army under the Early Out program.
ECHO
Military phonetic for the letter 'E'
Elephant grass
Tall, razor-edged tropical plant indigenous to certain parts of Vietnam
Eleven Bravo
The MOS of an infantryman
EM
Enlisted man
EOD
Explosive ordinance disposal. A team that disarms explosive devices.
E-tool
Entrenching tool. Folding shovel carried by infantrymen.
ETS
Date of departure for overseas duty station; estimated time of separation from military service.
Evac'd
Evacuated
Expectants
Casualties who are expected to die

F

F-4
Phantom jet fighter-bombers. Range: 1,000 miles. Speed: 1400 mph. Payload: 16,000 lbs. The workhorse of the tactical air support fleet.
FAC
Forward air controller; a person who coordinates air strikes
Fast mover
An F-4
Fatigues
Standard combat uniform, green in color
FB
Firebase
FDC
Fire direction control center
Finger charge
Explosive booby-trapping device which takes its name from the size and shape's being approximately that of a man's finger
Fire base
Temporary artillery encampment used for fire support of forward ground operations
Firefight
A battle, or exchange of small arms fire with the enemy
Fire Track
Flame-thrower tank
Five
Radio call sign for the executive officer of a unit
Flack jacket
Heavy fiberglass-filled vest worn for protection from shrapnel
Flaky
To be in a state of mental disarray, characterized by spaciness and various forms of unreasoning fear
Flare
Illumination projectile; hand-fired or shot from artillery, mortars, or air
Flechette
A small dart-shaped projectile clustered in an explosive warhead. A mine without great explosive power containing small pieces of shrapnel intended to wound and kill.
FNG
Fucking New Guy
FO
Forward observer. A person attached to a field unit to coordinate the placement of direct or indirect fire from ground, air, and naval forces.
Foo gas
A mixture of explosives and napalm, usually set in a fifty-gallon drum
Fours
F-4s
FOXTROT
Military phonetic for the letter 'F'
Frag
Fragmentation grenade; verb form of "fragging"
Fragging
The assassination of an officer by his own troops, usually be a grenade
Freak
Radio frequency. Also, a junkie or a doper.
Freedom Bird
The plane that took soldiers from Vietnam back to the World
Free fire zone
Free strike zone
Free strike zone
Area where everyone was deemed hostile and a legitimate target by U.S. forces
French fort
A distinctive triangular structure built by the hundreds by the French
Freq
Radio frequency
Friendly fire
Accidental attacks on U.S. or allied soldiers by other U.S. or allied soldiers
FUBAR
acronym for "Fucked Up Beyond All Recognition," used to describe any disorganized operation
Fuck
Along with fucked and fuckin', the most commonly used word in the GI vocabulary other than the article 'a'
Fucked up
wounded or killed. Also, to get stoned, drunk, or to be foolish or do something stupid.
Fugazi
Fucked up or screwed up
FULRO
United Front for the Struggle of Oppressed Races. Resistance organization in the highlands of Vietnam made up of Montagnards, Cham, and ethnic Khmer. FULRO is still conducting resistance against Communist operations to subjugate the indigenous tribal peoples.
FUNCINPEC
National United Front for an Independent, Neutral, Peaceful, and Cooperative Cambodia. Prince Sihanouk's non-Communist political and military organization which attempted to drive the Vietnamese occupation forces out of Cambodia and reestablish independence. In 1982 FUNCINPEC joined the Cambodian Coalition Government and shared the seat at the United Nations.
Funny papers
Topographic maps
FWMAF
Free World Military Assistance Forces. The Allies.

G

G-3
Division level tactical advisor; a staff officer.
Garand
The M-1 rifle
Ghosting
Goldbricking or sandbagging; fucking off
GI
Government issue. Usually refers to an American soldier.
Glad bag
Slang term for body bag
GOLF
Military phonetic for the letter 'G'
Gook
Derogatory term for an Asian; derived from Korean slang for "person" and passed down by Korean war veterans
Green Berets
U.S. Special Forces
Greens
Army Class A uniform
GR point
Graves registration point. That place on a military base where the identification, embalming and processing of dead soldiers takes place as part of the operations of the quartermaster.
Grids
Map broken into numbered thousand-meter squares
Grunt
infantryman. Originally slang for a Marine fighting in Vietnam but later applied to any solder fighting there; a boonierat.
GSW
Gunshot wound
The Gun
The M-60
Gung Ho
Rnthusiastic (usually about military matters and killing people)
Gunship
Armed Helicopter
GVN
Government of South Vietnam

H

HALO
High-altitude, low-opening jumping for insertion of troops behind enemy lines. The jump is begun from 15,000 feet.
Hamlet
A small rural village
Hammer and anvil
An infantry tactic of surrounding an enemy base area, then sending in other units to drive the enemy out of hiding.
Hand frag
A fragmentation grenade thrown by a soldier
H&E
High explosive
H&I
Harassment and interdiction. Artillery bombardments used to deny the enemy terrain which they might find beneficial to their campaign; general rather than specific, confirmed military targets; random artillery fire.
Hardstand
A pierced steel plate (PSP) platform over sand
Hard-stripe Sergeant
Rank indicated by chevron insignia, equivalent to an E5 or E6, but denoting some limited authority as well. Others of the same rank without the stripes were little more than PFCs.
Heart
A Purple Heart award for a wound; the wound itself
Heat tabs
Flammable tablet used to heat C-rations. Always in short supply.
Hercules
A  C-130
HES
Hamlet Evaluation System. An evaluation system devised and run by Americans in Saigon which required monthly computerized reports from all the DSAs in the country.
HHC
Headquarters and headquarters company
Higher-highers
The honchos; the command or commanders
HM
Navy hospital Corpsman; a Medic
Hmong
A dominant Laotian hill tribe, around sixty percent of whom opposed the North Vietnamese and Pathet Lao, in alliance with the Americans and Royal Lao government. After 1975 the Communists stepped up repression against the Hmong, who refused to be collectivized. Massive numbers of Hmong have been killed or driven into Thailand.
Hoa Hao
A Buddhist sect of two million in the western Mekong Delta, founded in the 1930s. Since the assassination of the founder and prophet, Huynh Phu So, by Ho Chi Minh's forces, the Hoa Hao have been fiercely anti-Communist.
Ho Chi Minh slippers
Sandals made from tires. The soles are made from the tread and the straps from inner tubes.
Hoi-Chanh
Vietnamese Communist soldiers and cadre who rallied to the South Vietnamese government under the Chieu Hoi amnesty program.
Honey-dippers
People responsible for burning human excrement
Honky
African American vernacular term for white people.
Hooch
A hut or simple dwelling, either military or civilian. Also spelled hootch.
Hoochgirl
Vietnamese woman employed by American military as maid or laundress
Hook
A radio; a radio handset
Horn
Radio microphone
Hot
Area under fire
HOTEL
Military phonetic for the letter 'H'
Hot LZ
A landing zone under enemy fire
Howitzer
A short cannon used to fire shells at medium velocity and with relatively high trajectories
HQ
Headquarters
Huey
Nickname for the UH-1 series helicopters
Hump
March or hike carrying a rucksack; to perform any arduous task

I

I Corps
The northernmost military region in South Vietnam
II Corps
The Central Highlands military region in South Vietnam
III Corps
The densely populated, fertile military region between Saigon and the Highlands
IV Corps
The marshy Mekong Delta southernmost military region
IG
Inspector General of the U.S. Army
Illum
An illumination flare, usually fired by a mortar or artillery weapon
Immersion foot
Condition resulting from feet being submerged in water for a prolonged period of time, causing cracking and bleeding.
In-country
Vietnam
Increments
Removable charges attached to mortar fins. If they become wet, the mortar round misfires and falls short.
INDIA
Military phonetic for the letter 'I'
Insert
To be deployed into a tactical area by helicopter
Iron Triangle
Viet Cong dominated area between the Thi-Tinh and Saigon rivers, next to Cu Chi district

J

JAG
Judge advocate general, the legal department of the Armed Services
Jet Jockey
Air Force fighter pilot
Jody
The person who wins your lover or spouse away while you are in the Nam. From the marching song or cadence count, "Ain't no use in goin' home / Jody's got your girl and gone / sound off...."
John Wayne
Can opener. Also used as a verb to describe the actions of someone who exposes himself to danger. For an example of what some GIs though of John Wayne, see Robert Flynn's essay, "John Wayne Must Die."
JULIET
Military phonetic for the letter 'J'
Jungle boots
Footwear that looks like a combination of combat boot and canvas sneaker used by the U.S. military in a tropical climate, where leather rots because of the dampness. The canvas structure also speeds drying after crossing streams, rice paddies, etc.
Jungle utilities
Lightweight tropical fatigues

K

K
Kilometer
KBA
Killed by artillery
K-bar
Combat knife
KCS
Kit Carson scout
KIA
Killed in action
Killing zone
The area within an ambush where everyone is either killed or wounded
Kill zone
The radius of a circle around an explosive device within which it is predicted that 95 percent of all occupants will be killed should the device explode
KILO
Military phonetic for the letter 'K'
Kit Carson scout
Former Viet Cong who act as guides for U.S. military units
Khong xau
Vietnamese slang for "don't worry about it," literally, "not bad"
Klick
Kilometer
Kool-Aid
Killed in action
KP
Kitchen Police; mess hall duty
KPNFL
Khmer People's National Liberation Front. The major non-Communist Cambodian political and resistance organization fighting against the Vietnamese occupation force. Formed in 1979 by former prime minister Son Sann, the KPNFL is responsible for caring for and protecting nearly two-thirds of the 250,000 Cambodian refugees on the Thailand border from attacks by both the Khmer Rouge and the Vietnamese. Also called the Sereika by Cambodians, the KPNLF joined the resistance coalition government (CGOK) in 1982 and shared Cambodia's seat at the United Nations.

L

L
A type of ambush set-up, shaped like the letter 'L'
Lager
A night defensive perimeter
Lao Dong
The Vietnamese Workers Party
LAAW
A shoulder-fired, 66-millimeter rocket, similar in effect to a 3.5-inch rocket, except that the launcher is made of Fiberglass, and is disposable after one shot
Lay chilly
To freeze; to stop all motion
LBJ
Long Binh Stockade, a military stockade on Long Binh post
LCM
A mechanized landing craft used in harbors and inland waterways
Leg
Slightly contemptuous term used by airborne-qualified troops when they are talking about regular infantry
Lego
Infantry unit
Lien Doi
Company group. A Vietnamese military unit consisting of three militia infantry companies
Lifer
Career military man. The term is often used in a derogatory manner.
LIMA
Military phonetic for the letter 'L'
Lima-lima
Land line. Refers to telephone communications between two points on the ground.
Litters
Stretchers to carry dead and wounded
Little people
The enemy
Lit-up
Fired upon; shot and killed or wounded
LLDB
Luc Luong Dac Biet. The South Vietnamese Special Forces.
LMG
Light machine gun. The Soviet made RPD, a bi-pod mounted, belt fed weapon similar to the American M-60 machine gun. The RPD fires the same cartridge as the AK-47 and the SKS carbine.
Loach
A  LOH
Log Bird
Logistical (resupply) helicopter
LP
Listening post. A two- or three-man position set up at night outside the perimeter away from the main body of troopers, which acted as an early warning system against attack. Also, an amphibious landing platform used by infantry for storming beaches from the sea.
LRRP
Long Range Reconnaissance Patrol. An elite team usually composed of five to seven men who go deep into the jungle to observe enemy activity without initiating contact.
LSA
Small arms lubricant
LST
Troop landing ship
LT
Lieutenant
Lurps
Members of Long Range Reconnaissance Patrols
LZ
Landing zone. Usually a small clearing secured temporarily for the landing of resupply helicopters. Some become more permanent and eventually become base camps.

M

M-1
World War II vintage American rifle
M-14
Wood stock rifle used in early portion of Vietnam conflict
M-16
The standard U.S. military rifle used in Vietnam from 1966 on. Successor to the M-14.
M-60
The standard lightweight machine gun used by U.S. forces in Vietnam.  Also mounted on the each side of a Huey
M-79
A U.S. military hand-held grenade launcher
MA
Mechanical ambush. Euphemism for an American set booby trap.
MACV
Military Assistance Command / Vietnam. The main American military command unit that had responsibility for and authority over all U.S. military activities in Vietnam. Based at Tan Son Nhut.
Mad Minute
A weapons free-fire practice and test session
Main Force Battalion
The primary Viet Cong fighting force within each province of South Vietnam. These units were often large enough and well enough equipped to participate in direct attacks on large Vietnamese and American installations and units.
Mama San
Pidgin used by American servicemen for any older Vietnamese woman
MARS
Military Affiliate Radio Station. Used by soldiers to call home via Signal Corps and ham radio equipment.
Mas-Cal
Mass casualty
MASH
Mobile Army Surgical Hospital
MAT
Mobile Advisory Team. Five-man teams of American advisors who were assigned to live and work in the Vietnamese villages.
Mat Tran
The Vietnamese Liberation Front.
Marker Round
The first round fired by mortars or artillery. Used to adjust the following rounds onto the target.
Mechanized Platoon
A platoon operating with tanks and/or armored personnel carriers
Med Cap
Medical Civil Action Program in which U.S. medical personnel would go into the villages to minister to the local populace.
Medivac
Medical evacuation from the field by helicopter
Mermite
Large insulated foot containers
MFW
Multiple Frag Wounds
MG
Machine Gun
MIA
Missing In Action
Mighty Mite
Commercial air-blower used for injecting gas into tunnels
MIKE
Military phonetic for the letter 'M'
Mike-Mike
Shorthand for millimeter
Million-dollar wound
A non-crippling wound serious enough to warrant return to the U.S.
Minigun
Electronically controlled, extremely rapidly firing machine gun. Most often mounted on aircraft to be used against targets on the ground.
Mr. Charles
The Viet Cong; the enemy
MI team
Military Intelligence team
Monday pills
Anti-malarial pills taken once a week
The Monster
A  PRC-77
Montagnard
A Vietnamese term for several tribes of mountain people inhabiting the hills and mountains of central and northern Vietnam.
Moose
A Vietnamese mistress
Mortar
A muzzle-loading cannon with a short tube in relation to its caliber that throws projectiles with low muzzle velocity at high angles.
MOS
Military Occupational Specialty
Most ricky-tick
Immediately, if not sooner
MP
Military Police
MPC
Military payment currency. The scrip U.S. soldiers were paid in.
MR IV
Viet Cong military region surrounding and including Saigon
Mule
Small, motorized platform originally designed to carry a 106-millimeter recoilless rifle, but most often used for transporting supplies and personnel.

N

Nam
Vietnam
Napalm
A jellied petroleum substance which burns fiercely, and is used as a weapon against personnel.
Nape
Napalm
NCO
Noncommissioned officer. Usually a squad leader or platoon sergeant.
NDP
Night defensive position
Net
Radio frequency setting, from "network."
New Socialist Man
Orwellian concept adopted by the Communists. The ideal collectivized citizen.
Next
The man who said he was the next to rotated home.
Nickel
The number five
NLF
National Liberation Front
No sweat
Easy, simple
NPD
Night perimeter defense
Number one
The best
Number ten
The worst
Number ten thousand
A description of how bad things can be
Nung
Tribespeople of Chinese origin, from the highlands of North Vietnam. Some who moved South worked with the U.S. Special Forces.
Nuoc-mam
Fermented fish sauce used by the Vietnamese as a condiment
NVA
North Vietnamese Army

O

OCS
Officer candidate school
OD
Olive drab, a camouflage color
Opcon
Operational Control
Open sheaf
A term used in calling artillery, whereby the artillery rounds were spread along an axis rather than concentrated on a single point (as when it was desired to cover a treeline).
OR
           Operating Room
OSCAR
Military phonetic for the letter 'O'
OSS
Office of Strategic Services
Over the fence
Crossing into Cambodia or Laos

P

P
Slang for the Vietnamese piaster. One piaster was worth one cent or less.
P-38
A tiny collapsible can opener, also known as a "john wayne"
PAPA
Military phonetic for the letter 'P'
Papa San
Pidgin used by U.S. servicemen for any older Vietnamese man
Papa Sierra
Slang for Platoon Sergeant
Pathet Lao
The Laotian Communists who, from their inception have been under the control of the Vietnamese Communist Party.
PBR
River patrol boat. Navy designation for the fast, heavily armed boats used for safeguarding the major canals and rivers and their tributaries in South Vietnam.
Peanuts
Wounded In Action
Perimeter
Outer limits of a military position. The area beyond the perimeter belongs to the enemy.
PF
Popular Forces. South Vietnamese National Guard-type local military units
PFC
Private First Class
Phoenix
Intelligence-based campaign to eliminate the Viet Cong infrastructure
PIO
Public Information Officer, or a person who works for that office
Piss-tube
A vertical tube buried two-thirds in the ground for urinating into
Platoon
A subdivision of a company-sized military unit, normally consisting of two or more squads or sections
Pogue
Derogatory term for military personnel employed in rear echelon support capacities, usually used by Marines
Point
The forward man or element on a combat patrol
Poncho liner
Nylon insert to the military rain poncho, used as a blanket
Pop smoke
To ignite a smoke grenade to signal an aircraft
POS
Slang for Position, usually meaning a friendly location
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
Development of characteristic symptoms after the experiencing of a psychologically traumatic event or events outside the range of human experience usually considered to be normal. The characteristic symptoms involve reexperiencing the traumatic event, numbing of responsiveness to, or involvement with, the external world, exaggerated startle response, difficulty in concentrating, memory impairment, guilt feelings, and sleep difficulties.
POW
Prisoner Of War
PRC-25
Portable Radio Communications, Model 25. A back-packed FM receiver-transmitter used for short-distance communications. The range of the radio was 5-10 kilometers, depending on the weather, unless attached to a special, nonportable antenna which could extend the range to 20-30 kilometers.
PRC-77
A radio similar to the PRC-25, but with a cryptographic scrambling / descrambling unit attached. Very heavy. Transmission frequencies on the PRC-77 were called the secure net.
Prick 25
PRC-25 radio
Profile
A prohibition from certain types of military duty due to injury or disability
Proo
PRU
Province Chief
Governor of a state-sized executive arm of the provincial government

Q

QUAD-50s
A four-barrelled assembly of .50 caliber machine guns
Quantico
Marine training base in Virginia
QUEBEC
Military phonetic for the letter 'Q'

R

RA
Regular Army, prefix to serial number of enlistees
Rabbits
White American soldiers, according to black vernacular
Rack
Bed or cot
Rallier
Defector from the Viet Cong
R&R
Rest and Recreation. A three to seven-day vacation from the war for a soldier.
Rangers
Elite commandos and infantry specially trained for reconnaissance and combat missions
RBF
Reconnaissance By Fire
React
For one unit to come to the aid of another under enemy fire
Recon
Reconnaissance. Going out into the jungle to observe for the purpose of identifying enemy activity.
Recondo School
A training school in-country for LRRPs. The largest was at Na Trang, where the training action was taken against the 17th NVA Division.
Red Alert
The most urgent form of warning. Signals an imminent enemy attack.
Redball
An enemy high speed trail or road
Red bird
A Cobra helicopter
Red Legs
Slang for Artillery. In the Civil War, Union Artillery men had red stripes on their pants.
Reeducation camps
Political prisons and labor camps of varying degrees of severity and size that comprised the Soviet-style gulag system throughout Communist Vietnam
Regiment
A military unit usually consisting of a number of battalions
Regional Forces
Militia units organized within each district in South Vietnam to engage in offensive operations against local Viet Cong forces. RF units were better paid and equipped than PF units and could be assigned duties anywhere within the home district.
REMF
Rear-Echelon motherFucker
Repo depo
replacement detachment
RF/PF
Regional and Popular Forces. The South Vietnamese National Guard-type units. Regional Forces were company-size and protected district areas. Popular Forces were platoon-size and guarded their home villages.
Rice paddy racers
Rubber shower shoes used by GIs
RIF
Reconnaissance in force. A heavy reconnaissance patrol. Later, RIF came to mean reduction in force; an administrative mechanism for retiring career soldiers prior to the end of their twenty year term.
Ringknocker
Graduate of a Military Academy. Refers to the rank worn by graduates.
Rock'n'roll
Firing a weapon on full automatic
ROK
Soldier from the Republic of Korea
ROMEO
Military phonetic for the letter 'R'
Rome plow
Mammoth bulldozer used to flatten dense jungle
RON
Remain-overnight operation
Rotate
To return to the U.S. at the end of a year's tour in Vietnam
ROTC
Reserve Officer's Training Corps. Program offered in many high schools and colleges, geared to prepare students to become military officers.
RPD
A 7.62 mm Communist machine gun with a 100-round, belt operated drum that fires the same round as the AK-47
RPG
A Rocket-Propelled Grenade. A Russian-made portable antitank grenade launcher.
RTO
Radio Telephone Operator. The man who carried his unit's radio on his back in the field.
Ruck/Rucksack
Backpack issued to infantry in Vietnam
Ruff Puff
Derogatory term used by Americans for RF/PF
Rules of Engagement
The specific regulations for the conduct of air and surface battles by U.S. and allied forces during the Vietnam war
Rumor control
The most accurate source of information prior to the actual occurrence of an event

S

S-1
Personnel
S-2
Intelligence
S-3
Operations
S-4
Supply
S-5
Civil Affairs
Saddle up
Put on one's pack and get ready to march
Salvo
Firing a battery in unison
Sampan
A Vietnamese peasant's boat
SAF
Small Arms Fire
S&S
Supply & Service; designation of a support unit
Sapper
A Viet Cong or NVA commando, usually armed with explosives
Satchel charges
Pack used by the enemy containing explosives that is dropped or thrown and is generally more powerful than a grenade
SeaBees
Navy construction engineers
SEAL
highly trained Navy special warfare team members.  Naval Special Warfare community
Search and Destroy
An operation in which Americans searched an area and destroyed anything which the enemy might find useful
SEATO
Southeast Asia Treaty Organization
Seminar camp
The Laotian Communist version of the reeducation camp for political prisoners
Sereika (Khmer Serei)
The non-Communist Cambodian resistance force
Sgt. Rock
A combat-scarred World War II comic book character
SERTS
Screaming Eagle Replacement Training School
Set
A party
SF
Special Forces
Shake'n'Bake
Sergeant who attended NCO school and earned rank after only a very short time in uniform
Shamming
Goofing off or getting by with as little effort as possible
Shaped charge
An explosive charge, the energy of which is focused in one direction
Shit burning
The sanitization of latrines by kerosene incineration of excrement
Short
A term used by everyone in Vietnam to tell all who would listen that his tour was almost over
Short-Timer
Soldier nearing the end of his tour in Vietnam
Short-Timer's Stick
When a soldier had approximately two months remaining on his tour in Vietnam, he might take a long stick and notch it for each of his remaining days in-country. As each day passed he would cut the stick off another notch until on his rotation day he was left with only a small stub.
Shrapnel
Pieces of metal sent flying by an explosion
SIERRA
Military phonetic for the letter 'S'
Silver Star
U.S. military decoration awarded for gallantry in action
Sit-rep
Situation report
Six
Any Unit Commander, from the Company Commander on up or Back-Side
Six-by
A large flat-bed truck usually with wooden slat sides enclosing the bed and sometimes a canvas top covering it. Used for carrying men or anything else that would fit on it.
Skate
A task that required little effort or pain; verb form means to take it easy
SKS
Simonov 7.62 mm semi-automatic carbine
Sky
To leave
Sky Crane
Huge double-engine helicopter used for lifting and transporting heavy equipment
Sky out
To flee or leave suddenly
Slackman
The second man back on a patrol, directly behind the point
Slant
Derogatory term for a Vietnamese person
Slick
A UH-1 helicopter used for transporting troops in tactical air assault operations. The helicopter did not have protruding armaments and was, therefore, "slick".
Slope
Derogatory term for an Asian person
SMG
SubMachine Gun
Smoke grenade
A grenade that released brightly colored smoke. Used for signaling.
Snake
A Cobra helicopter
SOI
Signal Operating Instructions. The booklet that contained all of the call signals and radio frequencies of the units in Vietnam.
Solacium Payment
Standard amount paid by the U.S. government to Vietnamese civilians when U.S. forces were deemed responsible for a wrongful civilian death. For a detailed discussion of a Solacium payment see Jim Lynch's artice, "Solacium Payment."
SOP
Standard Operating Procedure
Sopwith Camels
Slang term for a light, fixed-wing reconnaissance aircraft
Soul Brother
A black soldier
Spec-4
Specialist 4th Class. An Army rank immediately above Private First Class. Most enlisted men who had completed their individual training and had been on duty for a few months were Spec-4s. Probably the most common rank in the Vietnam-era Army.
Spec-5
Specialist 5th Class. Equivalent to a sergeant.
Spider hole
Camouflaged enemy foxhole
Splib
Term originated by black marines to identify other black soldiers. Supposedly meant to imply superior qualities.
Spooky
A large propeller-driven aircraft with a Minigun mounted in the door. Capable of firing 6,000 rounds per minute. Also used to refer to gunship helicopters with Miniguns.
SP pack
Cellophane packet containing toiletries and cigarettes which was sometimes given along with C-rations to soldiers in the field.
Squad
A small military unit consisting of less than ten men
Staff Sergeant
A  E-6, the second lowest noncommissioned officer rank
Stand-down
An infantry unit's return from the boonies to the base camp for refitting and training.  Later, a unit being withdrawn from Vietnam and redeployed to the U.S.
Starlifter
A  C-141, the largest military cargo transport airplane in the Air Force inventory
Starlight scope
An image intensifier using reflected light to identify targets at night
Steel pot
The standard U.S. Army helmet. The steel pot was the outer metal cover.
Strac
Smart, sharp, well prepared (from STRategic Air Command)
Strategic hamlet program
A controversial pacification and village self-defense program implemented by the Diem government that attempted to turn all sixteen thousand South Vietnamese hamlets into fortified compounds.
Strobe
Hand-held strobe light for marking landing zones at night
Syrette
Collapsible tube of morphine attached to a hypodermic needle. The contents of the tube were injected by squeezing it like a toothpaste tube.

T

TA-50
Individual soldier's standard issue of combat clothing and equipment
TAC
Tactical air strikes; fighter bombers
Tail-end Charlie
Last unit in a long column on the move
T&T
Through And Through wound. One in which a bullet or fragment has entered and exited the body.
Tanglefoot
Single-strand barbed wire strung in a meshwork pattern at about ankle height. A barrier designed to make it difficult to cross the obstructed area by foot. Usually placed around permanent defensive positions.
TANGO
Military phonetic for the letter 'T'
Tango boat
U.S. Navy designation for an armored landing craft mounted with 50-caliber machine guns and a 40-caliber anti-aircraft gun used for direct fire.
TC
Tactical Commander
Tet
January holiday, Buddhist lunar New Year. Buddha's birthday.
Tet Offensive
A major uprising of the National Liberation Front, their sympathizers, and NVA characterized by a series of coordinated attacks against military installations and provincial capitals throughout Vietnam. It occurred during the lunar New Year at the end of January, 1968.
Tee-tee
Pidgin for very small
TFES
Territorial Forces Evaluation System. The companion report of the HES. A computerized military evaluation system devised by American authorities in Saigon and used by them to assess the readiness of the militia forces. Each month advisors at the district level had to fill out the long computer print-out sheets and report on many different aspects of quantity and quality in the militia forces. Like all computer programs, the quality of this one's output was dependent upon the quality of the input.
Thermite
A mixture of powdered aluminum and metal oxide which produces great heat for use in welding and incendiary bombs
Three
Radio call signal for the operations officer
Three-quarter
A three-quarter ton truck
Tiger Suits
Camouflage fatigue uniforms
Tight
Good friends are close to ("tight" with) each other
TO
Tactical Officer
TO&E
Table of Organization and Equipment
TOC
Tactical operations center
Top
A top Sergeant
TOT
Time on target. Prearranged mortar or artillery barrage, set to occur at a specific time in order to coordinate with an infantry assault
Trach
A tracheotomy. Making an opening into the windpipe to facilitate breathing.
Tracer
A round of ammunition chemically treated to glow or give off smoke so that its flight can be followed.
Tracks
Any vehicles which move on tracks rather than wheels
Triage
The procedure for deciding the order in which to treat casualties
Trip flare
A ground flare triggered by a trip wire used to signal and illuminate the approach of an enemy at night.
Tropic Lighting
The U.S. 25th Infantry Division
Turtles
New replacements. They were called turtles because it took so long for them to arrive.
Two
Radio call signal of the Intelligence Officer.
Two-niner-two
The RC-292 ground plane antenna which was used to extend the range of the MAT and the district team's PRC-25.

U

Unbloused
Pants not tucked into boot tops
UH-1
A Huey helicopter - Bell UH-1 Iroquois Helicopter
UNIFORM
Military phonetic for the letter 'U'
US
Prefix to serial number of Army draftees
USAF
United States Air Force
USARV
U.S. Army Republic of Vietnam. Command of operations unit for all U.S. military forces in Vietnam, based in Long Binh.
USO
United Service Organization. Provided entertainment to the troops, and was intended to raise morale.
USOM
U.S. Operations Mission. Funded U.S. programs during the early American involvement in Vietnam.

V

V
A type of ambush set-up, shaped like the letter.
VA
Veterans Administration
VC
Viet Cong, the National Liberation Front
VCI
Viet Cong infrastructure. It was the aim of the Viet Cong to have a complete government in place when their victory was finally won. Thus, where manpower allowed, Communist cadres were secretly assigned positions as village chiefs, police officers, postment, District-level officers, Province-level officers, and National-level officers. The VCI were the "shadow government" of the National Liberation Front and were awaiting the day they could step forward and claim their offices.
VFW
Veterans of Foreign Wars. An American service organization.
VICTOR
Military phonetic for the letter 'V'
Victor Charlie
The Viet Cong; the enemy.
Viet Cong
The Communist-led forces fighting the South Vietnamese government. The political wing was known as the National Liberation Front, and the military was called the People's Liberation Armed Forces. Both the NLF and the PLAF were directed by the People's Revolutionary Party (PRP), the southern branch of the Vietnamese Communist Party, which received direction from Hanoi through COSVN, which was located in III Corps on the Cambodian border. After 1968, as negotiations began in Paris, the NLF established the Provisional Revolutionary Government.
Viet Minh
Viet Nam Doc Lap Dong Minh Hoi, or the Vietnamese Allied Independence League. A political and resistance organization established by Ho Chi Minh before the end of World War II, dominated by the Communist Party. Though at first smaller and less famous than the non-Communist nationalist movements, the Viet Minh siezed power through superior organization skill, ruthless tactics, and popular support.
Vietnamese Popular Forces
South Vietnamese local military forces.
Vietnamization
U.S. policy initiated by President Richard Nixon late in the war to turn over the fighting to the South Vietnamese Army during the phased withdrawal of American troops. The term was coined by Nixon's Secretary of Defense, Melvin Laird to replace the policy of "de-Americanization" first enunciated by Nixon on June 8, 1969.
Ville
Vietnamese hamlet or village
VNAF
South Vietnamese Air Force
VNQDD
Viet Nam Quoc Dan Dang, or Nationalist Party of Vietnam. A non-Communist movement formed in 1926, based on the doctrines of Sun Yat-sen. The VNQDD conducted the Yen Bai uprising in 1930, which began the modern struggle for Vietnamese independence. During World War II the VNQDD staged in southern China and were instrumental in gaining Ho Chi Minh's release from a Chinese prison to help with the resistance fight against the Japanese. Ho later broke with the VNQDD. By 1950, having lost their bases in southern China when Mao came to power, the VNQDD ceased to exist as an effective organization.
VSI
Very seriously ill. Army designation for those troopers who may die without immediate and definitive medical care.
VVA
Vietnam Veterans of America. Veterans organization not affiliated with the Veterans Administration.
VVAW
Vietnam Veterans Against the War. Organization formed by Vietnam veterans who gathered to protest American involvement in Vietnam.

W

Wake-up
As in "13 and a wake-up" -- the last day of a soldier's Vietnam tour.
Walking wounded
Wounded who are still able to walk without assistance.
Walter Wonderful
Walter Reed Army Hospital in Washington, D.C.
Wasted
Killed
Water Taxi
Small engine-powered boat with a sheltered passenger compartment. These native craft plied the major canals and rivers of Vietnam and provided a means of transportation from one village to the next.
Web gear
Canvas belt and shoulder straps for packing equipment and ammunition on infantry operations.
Weed
Marijuana
WHISKEY
Military phonetic for the letter 'W'
White bird
A  LOH
White mice
Derogatory name for South Vietnamese police. The nickname came from their uniform white helmets and gloves.
White Phosphorus
A type of explosive round from artillery, mortars, or rockets. Also a type of aerial bomb. The rounds exploded with a huge puff of white smoke from the hotly burning phosphorus, and were used as marking rounds or incendiary rounds. When white phosphorus hit the skin of a living creature it continued to burn until it had burned through the body. Water would not extinguish it.
WIA
Wounded In Action
Widow Maker
A  MA
Willy Peter
White Phosphorus
Wood line
A row of trees at the edge of a field or rice paddy
World, the
The United States
WP
White Phosphorus

X

X
A type of ambush set up, shaped like the letter
Xin Loi
A Vietnamese idiom meaning "sorry about that"
XO
Executive Officer; the second in command of a military unit
X-RAY
Military phonetic for the letter 'X'

Y

YANKEE
Military phonetic for the letter 'Y'
YD
The grid 100,000 meters by 100,000 meters square from the Universal Transmercator (UTM) Grid Zone 48Q. The UTM map of the world dispenses with latitude and longitude in favor of a system of metric coordinates (usually six digits) which enable the user of the map to specify a location within 100 meters.

Z

Zipperhead
Derogatory term used to describe Vietnamese
Zippo raids
Military operations which involved burning down Vietnamese villages. Often Zippo cigarette lighters were used to ignite the huts.
Zapped
Killed
Zit
Derogatory term for Vietnamese people
ZULU
Military phonetic for the letter 'Z'
Zulu
A casualty report
 
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