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Dictionary of War Terms, Personnel & Other Military Vocabulary

AGCT - Army I.Q. Test

Army banjo - shovel

Army Specialized Training Program (A.S.T.P.) - Program originally known as A-12; classroom based training usually leading to an engineering or like college degree and an Army Commission.

AWOL - absent without leave

BAR - Browning Automatic Rifle

bombardier - aircraft crew operator of bombing equipment

Bonaparte I, Napoleon - French emperor 1804-1815. Lived 1769-1821.

Bosquet, Pierre Françoise Joseph - (1810 - 1861) French Marshall in the Crimea

Winston Churchillburp gun - submachine gun, especially the German Schmeisser

Churchill, Sir Winston - 1874-1965. Served as Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 1940-45 and 1951-55.

Clemenceau, Georges - 1841-1929. Premier of France 1906-1909, 1917.

dogface - slang term for U.S. Army infantryman in World War II.

dog show - foot inspection

General Dwight D. EisenhowerEisenhower, Dwight David (Ike) - 1890-1969. General of American Forces and Commander of Allied Forces during World War II. President of the United States, 1953-1961.

Enfield rifle - type of rifle first made in Enfield, England, used by British and American troops, varying calibers including .30 or .303 bolt-action, breechloading model

enfilade - (n) to rake with gunfire across the length of a target

Four Minute Men - A nation-wide organization, part of the Division of the Committee on Public Information which was created by President Wilson on April 14, 1917. Its purpose was to present short, coordinated messages of national importance about The Great War to motion picture theater audiences. The name came from the four minute long intermission period when the Four Minute Men talked, as movie reels were changed.

French leave - AWOL

GI - some thing issued by or associated with the American military

gold brick -(v) to shirk

Ulysses S. GrantGrant, Ulysses S. - 1822-1885. Union general during Civil War; President of the United States, 1869-1877.

Holy Joe - army chaplain (see Sky Scout)

Infantry Replacement Training Center - Army training center providing thirteen weeks of infantry training for draftees.

Iron Duke - Nickname of First Duke of Wellington, British soldier and statesman. (see Wellington)

Robert E. Lee on TravelerLee, Robert E. - 1807-1870. Commander in chief of Confederate Armies during the Civil War.

Douglas MacArthurMacArthur, General Douglas - Showed brilliance as officer in early years, promoted to brigadier general in 1918. Became Army Chief of Staff in 1930. Retired in 1937 but recalled to active duty during World War II to lead Allied forces in the Pacific. Served as Supreme Commander of Allied occupation forces in Japan after the war and commanded United Nations forces during Korean conflict. Died in Washington, D.C. on April 5, 1964 at age 84. (Click for quotes by Douglas MacArthur.)

Napoleonic - characteristic of or pertaining to the era of Napoleon I (see Bonaparte)

Ninety-day wonder - OCS graduate

George PattonPatton, General George - 1885-1945. American commander of the Seventh and Third Armies in World War II.

poop - information or data

Port of Embarkation (P.O.E.) - Where new replacements were sent after completing infantry training from which they embarked by ship to one of the theaters of World War II for active duty.

Pyrrhic victory - the winning of a battle, but a victory with such overwhelming losses as to be hollow or empty of meaning, such as that of Pyrrhus's troops against the Romans at Asculum in 270 BC.

Pyrrhus - a second cousin to Alexander the Great and the King of Epirus whose ambitions resulted in the attempt to revive Alexander's empire leading to conflict in Italy from which he emerged victor of two battles in 280-279 BC including one against the Romans at Asculum which resulted in staggering losses to Phrrhus's own army.

reppledepple - replacement depot

scattergun - machine gun

screaming meemies - rocket launchers, primarily the German Nebelwerfer

Sky scout - Army Chaplain (see Holy Joe)

Section 8 - Discharge for mental reasons; insanity

Sherman, William Tecumseh - 1820-1891. American commader of Union troops in Civil War.

Shiloh - Civil War battle at Pittsburg Landing in southwestern Tennessee in which Union forces defeated the Confederates in 1862. Now a National Military Park.

Sun Tzu Wu - (4th Century BC) Chinese military leader and philosopher, author of a treatise on the philosophy of human conflict titled Ping-fa, The Art of War. Born in Ch'i, later settled in Wu where he served as general and led his army to great victories against rival principalities Ch'u, Ch'i and Ch'in.

tracer bullet - a bullet that leaves a luminous or smoky trail

Wellington, Duke of - 1769-1852. Arthur Wellesley, British statesman and soldier, defeated Napoleon at Waterloo in 1815. Served as Prime Minister 1828-30 (see Iron Duke).

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Page Updated: June 29, 2005