combat writing badge

M I L T E R M S : fingerspelled letter V semaphor letter V signal flag letter V V : VICTOR

The emphasis of this educational reference is on words and phrases that appear in published works about war and military service; and amongst this jargon and slang, there is no pretense of objectivity or completeness, which may be readily found in official documents or government resources. This fragmentary opus is a work in progress ....

Caveat Lector: Vulgar, profane, and obscene dysphemisms, which have been used for every part of speech and rhetorical form, have not been Bowdlerized nor expurgated from this glossary, to the undoubted dismay of purists and the evident enrichment of our mother-tongue; so immature or hypersensitive persons should refrain from perusing this indubitably eclectic and contingently egregious compendium. Swearing is usually either juvenile or crass, but military personnel admire talent and respect skill, so the ability to create imaginative expletives and to craft uncommon scurrility is often appreciated.


go to MilTerms index



V :
an aircraft prefix under the Joint Service Designation System that represents 'executive'.

DARTH VADER :
a Jedi knight featured throughout the "Star Wars" saga, appearing as an antagonist in the original trilogy and as a protagonist in the prequel trilogy; this cyborg was born Anakin Skywalker, the father of both Luke Skywalker and Princess Leia Organa, who fell to the Dark Side of the Force where he served as a ruthless henchman of Emperor Palpatine, whom he plots to overthrow. The DARTH VADER character was created by George Lucas, and this persona is featured in the film and television series, novels and comics, as well as in video games. See JEDI KNIGHT, FICTIONAL CHARACTER. [nb: Anak, the progenitor of the Anakim, who were a race of giants before the Israelites (Joshua 15:14; Judges 1:20; Numbers 13:33)]

VALEDICTION :
the act of leave-taking or departure, separation or send-off, closure or conclusion, final appearance or last act. Also, an utterance or oration made in bidding farewell or in taking leave, especially a speech delivered by someone upon leaving an assignment or posting; valedictory, apopemptic, farewell address, swan song, baccalaureate sermon, commencement address, sayonara speech, closing remarks, exit speech, SALUTE, PASS IN REVIEW. Also, anything pertaining to an occasion of leave-taking. [v: adieu, adios, aloha ("love"), arrivederci ("until we see each other again"), auf wiedersehen ("until we meet again)", au revoir ("until we see each other again"), ave atque vale ("hail and farewell"), bye, bye-bye, chao, cheerio, congee / congé, farewell, good-bye, leave-taking, sayonara, shalom, so long, ta-ta, toodle-oo / toodle-loo]

VALHALLA :
in Norse mythology, the hall of Odin (the principal god of pagan Scandinavia) into which the souls of those fallen in battle are received; also represented as "walhalla" and "walhall", being the Latinized form of "Valholl", as derived from "hall of the slain". See WILD HUNT, THE BIG PX IN THE SKY, HAPPY VALLEY, FIDDLER'S GREEN, SIN CITY, TOAST, CANNON FODDER, ZAP, WASTED, CHECK OUT, BITE THE DUST, BUY THE FARM, BITTER END, SNOWBALL, DIDDLY, SUICIDE SQUAD, SPEARHEAD, RAT RACE, BASTARD, BELL THE CAT. [nb: "No warrior is ever going to heaven because the saints would make him feel unwelcome there, and no warrior is ever going to hell because the devils are afraid that he would takeover there, so when warriors die, they go to their own special place, where they can be with others of their own kind." anonymous] [v: enfants perdus, forlorn hope; cf: Tartarus, Erebus, Pluto, Stygian, Orcus, Avernus, Tophet, Satan's kingdom, Devil's house, underworld, lower world, netherworld, nether regions, the bad place, hell, hades, inferno, infernal regions, perdition, purgatory, limbo, oblivion, pit, bottomless pit, abyss, lake of fire and brimstone, lake of fire, fiery furnace, abode of the damned, home of lost souls, place of departed spirits, shades below, hellhole] Also, the Valhalla Training Center in Colorado, being a 16,000 square foot KILL HOUSE with sound and light effects that are designed to simulate combat AT CLOSE QUARTERS for DOD personnel.

VALLEY OF DEATH :
any hazardous area or COMBAT ZONE, KILL ZONE or ZONE OF FIRE, especially a place dominated by a tactically superior high-ground, such as Monte Cassino or Dien Bien Phu. Also, an allegorical reference to a moral or physical trial, such as a combatant's "baptism by fire", being that place where he was subjected to mortal jeopardy; by allusion to the passage in either the Biblical Psalm 23:4 ("though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil") or Tennyson's "The Charge of the Light Brigade" ("into the valley of Death rode the six hundred") ... and in Bunyan's Pilgrim's Progress, Christian passes through it on his quest, a very solitary place, with a dangerous quag on one side and a deep ditch on the other, and the mouth of hell is close by one side of it, from which issue flames and fiends. See VALHALLA, FOXHOLE CONVERSION, ARMY CHRISTIAN.

VALOR :
bold determination in facing danger; as derived from "worth"; see V-DEVICE, IMPACT AWARD, GUTS, MOXIE, ONIONS, DIEHARD, VETERAN, WINTER SOLDIER, NOBLE SAVAGE, COUNT COUP, BRAGGING RIGHTS, QUIET PROFESSIONAL, HERO, MACHO. [nb: "That which valor has joined cannot be parted by death, and that which has been ennobled by courage shall not be diminished by passing, even out of remembrance."; "Uncommon valor was a common virtue."; "The bravest are the tenderest, and the loving are the most daring."; "It's good to be brave, but it's better to be smart."]

VAN :
truncation of VANGUARD (qv).

VANGUARD :
the front or forward part of an advancing army; literally "fore-guard"; see POINT, PATHFINDER, SPEARHEAD, RANGER, SUICIDE SQUAD. [v: avangarde, avaunt guard, avant-garde] [v: enfants perdus, forlorn hope; cf: picket, vedette] [nb: "Whenever there is fighting to be done, the keenest spirits should be appointed to serve in the front ranks, both in order to strengthen the resolution of our own men and to demoralize the enemy." by Chang Yu]

VANTAGE POINT :
a place or position that affords a good, clear, or wide perspective, as one suitable for taking or directing action; formally known as COIGN OF VANTAGE, and informally as "catbird seat" or "inside track".

VAPES :
aviation slang for "vapor trails", being those streaks of condensed ice droplets or water vapor left in the atmosphere as a visible indication of the rapid passage of a high speed aircraft; also called CONTRAIL. See CONIC VAPOR, CON LEVEL.

VAPOR TRAIL :
see CONTRAIL, CONIC VAPOR, VAPES, CON LEVEL.

VARIABLE TIME FUZE :
see VT, PROXIMITY FUZE.

VAST GREEN HEAVEN :
see BIG GREEN PARADISE.

VAST GREEN PARADISE :
see BIG GREEN PARADISE.

VATLS :
Visual Airborne Target Locator System of the USAF; compare AWACS, ABNCP, UMBRELLA, RACETRACK, ORBIT.

VB :
(forthcoming); AZON (azimuth only), RAZON, Felix, Bat; WWII-era visually steerable 1000# bomb with gyro, then TV camera WAR NOSE, adjust side-to-side, radio signal to servo motor moves fins, affect glide but not alter range or trajectory

VBIED :
Vehicle-Borne Improvised Explosive Device, wherein a vehicle containing EXPLOSIVEs may be detonated by a timing device or by remote control, by a suicidal terrorist or by an ignorant dupe; also called "suicide vehicle borne improvised explosive device" (SVBIED), and commonly known as a "car bomb". See IED, HME, BOOBY-TRAP, SYMPHONY.

VC :
abbreviation for Vietnamese Communist, being a contraction of "Viet-nam Cong-san", the term invented by President Ngo Dinh Diem for the Communist forces fighting the South Vietnamese government (GVN, SVN); also called VIET CONG, "Cong", or "communist traitor of vietnam", and nicknamed "Victor Charlie" (or "Victor Charley") from the phonetic alphabet. Enemy weapons of the Vietnam-era included: SKS, PPSh-41, PPS-43, MP-40, MAT-49, K-50M, AK-47, AKM, Type 50 (unlicensed PRC copy w/30rd mag). See NLF, PRG, VIET MINH, VIET QUOC, PAVN, BO DOI, CHARLIE, LONGHAIR, PLA, GOMER, LUKE THE GOOK, BAD GUYS. [nb: "Anybody who runs is a VC. Anybody who stands still is a well-disciplined VC." by Stanley Kubrick Full Metal Jacket (1987), adapted from The Short Timers by Gustav Hasford]

V-CAMPAIGN :
the WWII campaign designed to improve the morale and sustain the resistance of occupied civilian populations by Allied PROPAGANDA and partisan GUERRILLA forces, consisting of marking property with the letter "V" for 'victory', wearing the letter "V" as a symbol of solidarity, humming or whistling the Morse code (...-) for the letter "V", and the like. This morale campaign also encouraged chain-letter news reporting, singing of traditional and patriotic songs, wearing of national COLORS in pieces of clothing (eg: British roundel worn as a tam-o'-shanter, French stripes as a scarf), and the aloof disregard of occupation troops. All of these "passive resistance" acts of defiance became putative "crimes" by the final year of the war, which only increased their prevalence. The British Broadcasting Company (BBC) opened their news coverage with the beginning of Beethoven's fifth symphony, being a musical letter "V" for 'victory'! [nb: southern belles who wore a Confederate rosette in military districts during the American CIVIL WAR were officially denoted as 'prostitutes', but the wearing of same was not a crime, nor would a woman be arrested for 'advertising' herself]

VCI :
Vietnamese Communist Infrastructure; see VC, NLF, PRG, PLA.

VCP :
Vehicle Check Point, being a small PILLBOX setup as a traffic control station situated at intersections and along roads in Iraq; commonly called a "cop in a box".

VCS :
Vietnamese Communist Suspect, or VIET CONG Suspect; see METAL TEST, compare DOUBTFULS, SQUIRTER, EPW, POW.

VD :
Virtual Display, a helmet-mounted luminous presentation of the multifunction displays (MFD) arrayed for the PILOT and Weapon Systems Officer (WSO) from the integrated flight, armaments, and surveillance computers on the aircraft; input may be by voice, touch, or cursor, while output may include text, images, maps, icons, infrared (IR) or RADAR readings; this versatile display supersedes the Head's Up Display (HUD), which was projected from the instrument panel at eye-level; see PLASTIC BRAINS, BITCHIN' BETTY, SHARON, COMBINATION GLASS, SIGHT PICTURE, PRIMROSE PATH, HOTAS. Also, abbreviation for Venereal Disease, a condition transmitted by sexual relations; a genital infection exhibiting corruption and discharge ("the drip" or "jelly") that's also known as a social disease or sexually transmitted disease (STD); see CLAP, ARC, ORIENTAL CRUD, TROPICAL BUBO, SHORT ARM, PECKER-CHECKER, PRO KIT, ANTIBIOTIC. [aka: "scrud" (any venereal disease); "dirty barrel" (an infected penis or vagina)] [v: chancre, chancroid] [re: syphilis, gonorrhea, genital herpes, chlamydia, lymphogranuloma venereum, trichomoniasis, nongonococcal urethritis] [nb: before blatant sexuality abrogated etiquette, a polite inquiry into one's well-being could receive the jocular reply of "Passing well.", which meant micturating without difficulty, or being free from venereal infection, having the same amusing effect among friends as the modern query "How they hanging?" ... "passing well" could be interpreted as "fair to middling", and so was socially inoffensive]

V-DEVICE :
representing "valor", and known as the "combat V" or "combat distinguishing device" among Navy and Marine personnel, this DEVICE is appended to any award for combat action which may also be presented for merit, such as the Bronze Star Medal (BSMw/V) or Air Medal (AMw/V) or Army Commendation Medal (ARCOMw/V); some other medals are only awarded for valor, such as the Silver Star (SS) or Distinguished Service Cross (DSC), while others are only presented for merit, such as the Legion of Merit (LOM) or Distinguished Service Medal (DSM), and others only for service, such as the National Defense Service Medal (NDSM) or Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal (AFEM). See DEVICE, OLC, BATTLE STAR, GONG, IMPACT AWARD, TRASH, GUTS, MOXIE, ONIONS, DIEHARD, VETERAN, WINTER SOLDIER, NOBLE SAVAGE, COUNT COUP, BRAGGING RIGHTS, QUIET PROFESSIONAL, HERO, MACHO. [nb: it's a federal crime for anyone to misappropriate or misattribute the award of a valor decoration] [nb: an insignia emblematic of the honors and lineage of a military organization, unlike familial "coats of arms", may be individually enhanced but not personally heritable; v: Heraldry] [nb: pagan Norsemen awarded metallic bracelets in recognition of meritorious or valorous deeds]

VECTOR :
the course of approach or advance adjusted by angles from known REFERENCE POINTS; see VOR, VORTAC, BEAM, PIRAZ, MEACONING; compare IMC, VFR. Also, any agent, carrier, transporter, or transmitter of disease, information, or the like; see GERM WARFARE, CBR, GNR, PSYOPS, PROPAGANDA, PARTY LINE.

VEHICLE :
see TRUCK, DEUCE-AND-A-HALF, FIVE-TON, LMTV, MTV, JERRV, MRAP, HEMTT, WAR PIG, COUGAR, BUFFALO, JEEP, HUMMER, HMMWV, HUMVEE, TRACK, TANK, APC, GAVIN, BRADLEY, STRYKER, FISTV, LAV, FAV, ORV, MULE, CHAPARRAL, HALF-TRACK, ARMORED CAR, JINGLE TRUCK, HACK, RICE-BURNER, RICKSHA, CYCLO, PEDICAB, DUCK / DUKW, GAMMA GOAT, AMTRACK, AAV, LANDING CRAFT, BAND-AID, CRACKER BOX, MEDEVAC, CASEVAC, STRETCHER, LITTER, MOTOR POOL, JOHN WAYNE DRIVING SCHOOL, POV; compare KEY, BOAT, CHOPPER, BIRD.

VELCRO :
the tradename of a nylon fabric closure that consists of two complementary pieces of fastening tape, one with tiny hooks and the other with a dense pile, that interlock when pressed together, which is used as a substitute for buttons or snaps on garments, luggage, and the like; invented in 1948, Velcro is also called "hook 'n' loop fastener" and "hook 'n' pile fastener". See ZIP / ZIPPER, FLY.

VELVET GLOVE :
see IRON FIST IN A VELVET GLOVE, GAGE; compare GAUNTLET, GANTLET.

VENDOR :
see CHEAP CHARLIE, HAJJI SHOP, POJANGMACHA, JINGLE TRUCK, CYCLO, SLOP CHEST, SLICKY BOY, COWBOY, BANDIT, BELTWAY BANDIT, SAND CRAB, PORK BARREL, GSA, GAO, UNCLE SAM, MILITARY-INDUSTRIAL COMPLEX.

VENGEANCE :
the infliction of harm or humiliation upon a person by someone who was previously injured by that person; the infliction of terrible retaliation or violent revenge upon someone who caused hurt or harm to another. Also, force or violence done with a vengeance; done to an excessive or unexpected degree, as by an unreasonable requital. See RETALIATION, REPRISAL, REVENGE, RETRIBUTION, WAR CRIME, JUST WAR, DAY OF RECKONING, LAWS OF WAR.

VERACITY :
the habitual observance of truth; truthfulness. Also, conformity to accuracy or correctness, as of fact. See TRUTH, PROBITY, UNIVOCAL.

VERBAL DIARRHEA :
unrestrained speech or talking jag, as "He dug his own grave with his mouth!"; not only to say too much but to say the wrong things. See TALK TRASH, SHOOT THE SHIT, SNOW, GAS BAG, HOT AIR, MOTOR MOUTH, BRAVO SIERRA, SCUTTLEBUTT, RUMOR, BLOW SMOKE, CONFETTI, BAD-MOUTH, GODDAM, COUNT COUP, ATFU, SMOKE 'n' MIRRORS, SKATE, TAP-DANCER, FRUIT FLY, WAR CORRESPONDENT, MILICRAT, MIL-SPEAK.

VERBAL SHRAPNEL :
mordant or derisive speech, biting or cutting language; words strewn like bursting fragments from an exploding bomb or shell, often harmfully, to the detriment of morale; see BLISTER, FANG, VERBUM SAP. Also, any widespread announcement or broadcast, as an impersonal recitation of news or other information; see POOP, HEADS-UP, FYI, DOPE, THE WORD, GOUGE, GREEN GREASE, HOT-SHIT, GRIPEVINE, SCUTTLEBUTT, RUMOR.

VERBUM SAP / VERB SAP :
a contraction of "verbum sapienti sat est", which Latin dictum means: a word to the wise is sufficient; such a reproof or reproach, precaution or rebuke, admonition or censure, reprimand or dressing-down is also expressed as "put a flea in one's ear". See CONFAB, DEBRIEF, CALL ON THE CARPET, FANG, BLISTER, HAWK, BROWBEAT, KICK ASS, ATTITUDE ADJUSTMENT. [v: comeuppance]

VERNACULAR :
expression or writing in the common or conventional language INDIGenous to a population; being the plain language, native patois, mother tongue, or regional dialect of ordinary people. This holistic form of communication is "vulgar" in the sense of being prosaic, colloquial, customary, or unsophisticated. Also, any distinctive language that identifies a class, profession, or other group, such as parlance, jargon, idiom, argot, lingo, cant, slang, or the like; as contrasted with multilingual diversity. [v: demotic, catachresis, haplograph, mannerism, counterword, euphemism, ad diction, balderdash, language, sociolinguistics, orality; cf: hieratic, calque, proclitic, enclitic] See MIL-SPEAK, PERIPHRASIS, POLYGLOT, LINGUA FRANCA, TALK THE TALK, HOBSON-JOBSON, GOOKANESE, DOUBLE DUTCH, MONKEY VOICES, PIDGIN, BAMBOO ENGLISH, PIG LATIN, DOG LATIN, CREOLE. [nb: Zipf's Law of Linguistics asserts that while a few words in any natural language are used quite often, most words are used infrequently, which statistical observation was first made by George Kingsley Zipf]

VERY PISTOL :
a single-action pistol used for firing colored signal flares, most notably from a lifeboat survival pack; eponymously named after an American naval officer, Edward Wilson Very. See FLARE; compare PEN FLARE, SLAP-FLARE.

VESICANT :
a BLISTER AGENT or "blistering agent"; see COCKTAIL, CBW, CW, CBR, HAZMAT.

VEST :
see FLAK VEST, FLAK JACKET, HAPPY SUIT, CHICKEN PLATE, OTV, IOTV, ESAPI, SAPI, SHRAPNEL. [cf: flexible 'mail'; v: doublet]

VESTIBULE :
an enclosed entrance, PASSAGEWAY, or antechamber situated between the exterior door and the interior parts of a building (eg: HQ) or shelter (eg: TOC, BUNKER, BLOCKHOUSE); typically secured against unauthorized entry, it's used to restrict access (eg: MAN-TRAP, PEEPHOLE) and to control the environment (eg: BLACKOUT); this configuration resembles an "arctic entry", while the term itself derives from "forecourt". Compare PNEUMONIA HOLE; see GRILLE, BAFFLE. [v: anteroom, foyer, lobby]

VET :
short for 'VETeran', being an experienced person, especially someone with wartime service; as derived from "mature"; compare PEACETIMER. Also, to authenticate, as to appraise, scrutinize, verify, or check for accuracy or validity; also expressed as "vetted" or "vetting".

VETERAN :
a person who has had long service or experience in an occupation or activity, especially someone who has served in a military force; as derived from "mature". Also, a person who has served in the armed forces during wartime; someone with experience of warfare, or someone who has fought in a war. See WINTER SOLDIER, compare PEACETIMER. [v: inveterate (harden, habitual, from veteran); cf: infantry (infant= child too young to speak)] [v: expert, master, virtuoso, bailiwick; cf: "wight" is a human being, who is defined as such by his ability to fight, hence is someone who's strong and brave in war] [nb: "No one going as a soldier entangles himself with the affairs of life, that he may please him who has enlisted him as a soldier." 2 Timothy 2:4 (Darby)]

VETERANS' ASSOCIATION :
a group or organization of persons who affiliate for common cause based upon their shared military background, typically to celebrate fellowship and history but sometimes to accomplish social or political ends; a club or society, league or alliance, brotherhood or fraternity of VETERANs. See BOY'S CLUB, LAST MAN CLUB, GOOD PEOPLE, GOOD STICK, GOOD OLD BOY, PROFESSIONAL VETERAN, RING-KNOCKER, KHAKI MAFIA, PAY DUES, UP OR OUT, STACK ARMS, WHOLE MAN, HORS DE COMBAT, SIX DEGREES OF SEPARATION, ESPRIT DE CORPS, INITIATION, EARRING, MEAT MARKER, TATTOO, CHALLENGE COIN, SOUVENIR, TROPHY; compare FRATERNIZATION. [eg: Air Commando Association; Air Force Sergeants Association; American Airborne Association; American Ex-Prisoners of War; American GI Forum of the United States; American Gold Star Mothers; American Legion; American War Mothers; AMVETS; American Vet Alliance Service Center; Army and Navy Club; Army and Navy Union, USA; Army Officer Candidate School Foundation; Blinded Veterans Association; Blue Star Mothers of America; Brotherhood of Army Registrars; Catholic War Veterans, USA; Coalition of Retired Military Veterans; Combat Helicopter Pilots Association; Combined Action Program Veterans Association; Congressional Medal of Honor Society of the USA; Counterparts; Disabled American Veterans; DustOff Association; 82nd Airborne Division Association; Embassy Marines Association; Fleet Reserve Association; FORTY AND EIGHT; Gold Star Wives of America; Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America; Italian American War Veterans of the United States; Jewish War Veterans of the USA; Korean War Veterans Association; League of Disgruntled Majors; Legion of Valor of the USA; Marine Corps Association; Marine Corps League; U.S. Marine Raider Association; USMC Combat Helicopter Association; USMC Force Recon Association; Mike Force Association; Military Chaplains Association of the United States of America; MILITARY ORDER OF THE COOTIES; MILITARY ORDER OF THE DEVIL DOGS; Military Order of the Purple Heart; Military Order of the World Wars; National Alliance of Families for the Return of America's Missing Servicemen; National Association for Black Veterans; National Military Family Association; NATIONAL ORDER OF TRENCH RATS; National Vietnam and Gulf War Veterans Coalition; National Yeoman Association; Navy Club of the USA; Non-Commissioned Officers' Association; The Office of Strategic Services Society; Paralyzed Veterans of America; Para-Rescue Association; Pearl Harbor Survivors Association; U.S. Army Ranger Association; Reserve Officers Association; The Retired Enlisted Association; The Retired Officer Association; Special Forces Association; Special Operations Association; Swords to Plowshares; UDT - SEAL Association; Uniformed Services Disabled Retirees; United Spanish War Veterans; United States Submarine Veterans of World War II; Veterans Assistance Foundation; Veterans of Foreign Wars of the USA; Veterans of the Vietnam War; Vietnam Dog Handler Association; Vietnam Helicopter Pilots Association; Vietnam Veterans of America; Visually Impaired Veterans of America; Women's Army Corps Veterans' Association]

VETERANS' BONUS ACT :
(aka: Soldiers' Bonus Act; v: World War Adjusted Compensation Act) see BONUS ACT, GI BILL.

VETERANS' DAY :
the recurring annual observance of Armistice Day (11 November) ending the Great War (WWI) was reoriented in 1938 to honor the service and sacrifice of all military personnel in both peace and war, and was formally redesignated in 1954 by an Act of Congress. See TAPS, TROPHY, BUGLE CALL, TOMB OF THE UNKNOWNS, POW-MIA DAY, FLAG DAY; compare MEMORIAL DAY, PATRIOT DAY, PATRIOT'S DAY. [nb: many civilians confuse the meaning of the principal national holidays, combining each and commemorating all together at each date; instead of according honors to military servicemembers on Armed Forces Day, honors to veterans on Veterans' Day, and honors to the war dead on Memorial Day]

VF :
U.S. Navy designation for a Fighter Squadron.

VFA :
U.S. Navy designation for a Fighter Attack Squadron.

V FORMATION / VIC FORMATION :
a chevron-shaped flight of three or more airplanes that provide mutual support, autonomous action, and permit individual course changes (including reversal) without affecting relative orientation; a formation adopted in WWI to improve the traditional column and row cavalry formations, each set thereof was called an "element" (leader with wingmen) and the group of associated elements were called a "combat box" formation. Compare FINGER FOUR, WELDED WING, COMBAT BOX; see MISSING MAN FORMATION, BIRD. [nb: 'vic' is the short form of the alphanumeric 'victor' referent for the letter 'V']

V-44 MARINE RAIDER KNIFE :
the so-called "Carlson's Raiders knife" or "gung-ho bowie", which was made famous by its association with the 2nd Marine Raider Bn (1942), was actually the W.R. Case and Sons compact non-folding machete for aircraft survival kits, which survival knife was based upon the Collins #18 machete that had been supplied in U.S. Navy and U.S. Army Air Corps bailout kits since 1934; this clip-pointed machete (9.4"BL, 14.2"OAL) with a crossguard and green horn (1942), black phenolic plastic (1943), or wooden cocobolo (1944) haft was variously made by Collins Axe, Kinfolks, Western, and other contract cutlers until 1966. See BOWIE, MACHETE, SURVIVAL KNIFE, KNIFE.

V-42 STILETTO :
Case V-42 stiletto with sheath
for the First Special Service Force
Case V-42 stiletto
a variant of the Fairbairn-Sykes COMMANDO DAGGER, which was issued to BLACK DEVIL members of the First Special Service Force (FSSF), also called the "Devil's Brigade", which was a joint Canadian-American special operations force during WWII. The V-42 "Force knife" was a slim, double-edged and double hollow-ground dagger made by W.R. Case & Sons Cutlery Company to compensate for the poor quality of the F-S dagger, which the FSSF commander (Robert T. Frederick) had encountered in England. Its square ricasso (similar to the type 1 F-S) included a "thumbprint" for nighttime orientation, leather padding on the grip-side of the crossguard, a leather (instead of metal) haft, and an elaborate skull-crusher pommel (credited to Orval J. Baldwin, the FSSF supply officer). Unlike many other wartime knives, the V-42 was not intended to perform utilitarian functions, and many knives broke when employed in opening ration cases or ammunition crates. The V-42's brightly polished 7.5" tool steel blade could punch through a steel helmet and liner with a single thrust, and like the Randall fighters, was intended to be grasped with a finger or thumb over the crossguard, so the blade would be horizontally oriented ... not in either the fencing or ice-pick grips. Because of the slender tip and skull-crusher pommel, the V-42 required an elaborate sheath to protect the wearer from injuring himself during combat maneuvers or a parachute jump ... furthermore, the sheath was made long (cf: Gerber Mark II scabbard) to hang below other equipment and remain accessible under the drape of winter clothing. Although more than 3000 V-42 stilettos were ordered, only 1750 knives were received for issue by November 1943. Case Cutlery reproduced a commemorative "Force knife" during 1989-93.

VFR :
Visual Flight Rules; compare POPEYE, IMC, VOR, VECTOR.

VFR DIRECT :
Visual Flight Rules Direct, being an informal expression for going straight to a particular person or office, such as the chaplain (SKY PILOT) or Inspector General (IG), without the necessity of passing through the CHAIN-OF-COMMAND. See OFF THE RESERVATION, OUTSIDE THE WIRE, CHECKING THE DICTIONARY, UNODIR, SCRIPTURES, LOYALTY UP - LOYALTY DOWN, WIGGLE ROOM.

V-GIRL :
Victory-girl; see BUTTERFLY, GRASSHOPPER, CAMPAIGN WIFE, HORIZONTAL COLLABORATOR, SLEEPING DICTIONARY, CAMP FOLLOWER.

VHF :
Very High Frequency; radio signal spectrum between 30 and 300 megahertz (MHz). See VOR, RADIO WAVE, RADIO.

VHF OMNIRANGE :
see VOR.

VICTOR :
the winner in any struggle or contest, being the one who prevails, one who has overcome or defeated an adversary; as derived from "conqueror". Also, the word assigned to represent the letter "V" in the international phonetic alphabet; at various times in different spelling schemes, it has also been acrophonetically represented as Vice; it is sometimes spelled "viktor". See ALPHABET SOUP, PHONETIC ALPHABET. [v: Alphabet Codes & Signal Flags]

VICTORY :
a success over an enemy in BATTLE or a triumph in WAR; the key to success on the battlefield is offensive action ... it cannot be attained by defense alone. See HOLOCAUST, APOCALYPSE, ARMAGEDDON, PYRRHIC VICTORY, NEUTRALIZE, V-SIGN, DEFEAT, ARMISTICE, TRUCE, EXIT STRATEGY, TREATY. [nb: the countersign selected by George Washington for the Battle of Trenton on 26 December 1776 was "Victory or die."; "If fighting is sure to result in victory, then you must fight, even though the ruler forbid it; if fighting will not result in victory, then you must not fight, even at the ruler's bidding." by Sun-Tzu (ca490BC); "Wars may be fought with weapons, but they are won by men. It is the spirit of the men who follow and of the man who leads that gains the victory." by George S. Patton Jr (September 1933); "In war there is no substitute for victory." by Douglas MacArthur (19 April 1951); "Let every nation know, whether it wishes us well or ill, that we shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe, in order to assure the survival and the success of liberty." by John F. Kennedy (20 Jan 1961); cf: "It must be a peace without victory." by T. Woodrow Wilson (22 Jan 1917); "My good friends this is the second time in our history that there has come ... peace with honor. I believe it is peace in our time." by Neville Chamberlain (30 Sept 1938); "No one won the last war, and no one will win the next." by Eleanor Roosevelt (5 Nov 1948); "... we today have concluded an agreement to end the war and bring peace with honor in Vietnam and in Southeast Asia." by Richard M. Nixon (23 Jan 1973)] Also, any superior position or other achievement attained against a difficulty or opposition; to best or prevail, a conquest or triumph. [nb: "No pain, no gain; no guts, no glory."; "No pruning, no grapes; no grinding mill, no flour; no battle, no victory; no cross, no crown!"; "No laming, no naming, no struggle, no Promised Land; no Cross, no Crown."; "No pain, no palm; no thorns, no throne; no gall, no glory; no cross, no crown." by William Penn] Also, an AvnSpeak euphemism for downing an enemy plane in aerial combat; an aviation kill.

VICTORY-GIRL :
(aka: V-girl) see BUTTERFLY, GRASSHOPPER, CAMPAIGN WIFE, HORIZONTAL COLLABORATOR, SLEEPING DICTIONARY, CAMP FOLLOWER.

VICTORY ROLL :
a celebratory low-level pass over an airstrip or flight deck by a successful aircraft returning to its base after a combat operation. Although details have varied from war to war, depending upon the type of airplane flown and the tactical situation, the flight leader ordinarily directs one plane to depart from the formation to fly ahead and perform the VICTORY ROLL stunt as a demonstrable announcement of achievement to all ground personnel. Alternatively, the entire formation will perform the maneuver in trail sequence. Bombers typically limit themselves to BUZZing the airfield, but fighters usually perform a SNAP ROLL, often followed by a CHANDELLE. This controlled aerial maneuver is now discouraged for reasons ranging from "wasteful" and "stressful" to "inappropriate" and "dangerous"! See AEROBATICS. [v: AvnSpeak, an Aerobatics and Aviation Lexicon]

VICTORY TASK FORCE :
WWII Victory Task Force patch
Victory TF
a 1942 road show that demonstrated military skills to the public so as to promote higher morale and increase recruiting during WWII; this performance was similar to the later GABRIEL DEMONSTRATIONs in that it used professional actors in a public theater. Like the MACV RECONDO School, where battlefield "lessons learned" were immediately integrated into the training curriculum, the equivalent WWII British proving ground was a dynamic center for developing better equipment and methods for improvements in combat action. [nb: Morse code letter "V" below Roman letter on shoulder sleeve insignia]

VIET CONG :
being the contraction for 'Vietnamese communist' ("Viet-nam Cong-san"); also spelled "Viet-Cong" or "VietCong", abbreviated VC, and also represented as "communist traitor of vietnam". The official post-war history identifies the group as the 'Liberation Army of South Vietnam' or the 'South Viet Nam Liberation Army' (SVNLA) from 1960, the 'National Liberation Front for South Vietnam (NLF / NLFSVN) or the "National Front for the Liberation of the South" (NFLSVN), and by 1969 the "Provisional Revolutionary Government of the Republic of South Vietnam" (PRG / PRGRSVN) had been created as a surrogate of the NVA. See CHARLIE, LONGHAIR, LUKE THE GOOK, GOOK, GOMER, VCI, PRG, NLF, PLA, VIET MINH, VIET QUOC, PAVN, BAD GUYS.

VIET MINH :
Viet Nam Doc Lap Dong Minh Hoi, or the Vietnamese Independence League; also spelled "VietMinh". See VIET QUOC, BAD GUYS.

VIETNAM :
Republic of Vietnam flag
RVN
see VN, RVN, SVN, GVN, INDOCHINA, THE NAM, MARVIN THE ARVN, ARVN, VNN, VNMC, VNAF, AFVN, RF/PF, CIDG, STRIKER, YARD, BODE, HMONG, NUNG, PASSAGE TO FREEDOM, FREQUENT WIND, DMZ, DRV, NVN, SRV, VC, PRG, CHARLIE, NLF, BO DOI, GOMER, NVA, VIET MINH, VIET QUOC, PAVN, LONGHAIR, LUKE THE GOOK, BAD GUYS.

VIETNAM IS FOREVER :
an ironic catch-phrase or slogan, often used with "Vietnam, Love it or Leave it!", to counter the anti-war protests, which were perceived as also being anti-American. The WARMONGERING of RING-KNOCKERs, TICKET-PUNCHERs, and other LIFERs was cynically expressed as: "It ain't much, but it's the only war we got!". See KILL 'EM ALL, WINNING HEARTS AND MINDS, BATTLE CRY, WAR PARTY, TRIGGER-HAPPY; compare HELL NO - WE WON'T GO!, THEY'LL GIVE A WAR AN' NOBODY'LL COME. [nb: the superpatriot slogan of "America, Love it or Leave it!" was the source for the adapted version used in Vietnam; cf: "No glory like Old Glory!"]

VIETNAMIZATION :
the catch-phrase for the wholesale transfer of operations and materiel from the Allies to the RVN Armed Forces, beginning in March 1969 and concluding with conventional US departure in March 1973; formally known as "ACcelerated Turn-Over to the Vietnamese" (ACTOV), and commonly referred to as STAND-DOWN. This shift of responsibility for the continuation of the VIETNAM WAR was based upon the post-colonial "Indianization" of the Asian subcontinent by the British, but this precipitate changeover (nay, abandonment) was actually just a "deAmericanization" process. See PROVN, CRIMP, CSMO, KEYSTONE, VIETNAM SYNDROME.

VIETNAM SERVICE MEDAL / VSM :
Vietnam service medal
VSM
awarded to military personnel for service in Southeast Asia, its contiguous waters or air space, during the period 15 March 1962 to 28 March 1973, and may be decorated by battle stars for participation in each of 17 specific campaigns, and by an arrowhead for any combat parachute assault. Military ADVISORs serving between 1 July 1958 and 14 March 1962 are instead eligible for the "Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal" (AFEM), as are post-war ADVISORs until 30 April 1975. Compare CIVILIAN SERVICE IN VIET NAM MEDAL, RVN CAMPAIGN MEDAL; see CAMPAIGN MEDAL, GONG.

VIETNAM SYNDROME :
a predictable condition or pattern of behavior exhibited by pols or pundits that's characteristic of, or is attributed to, the conduct of the VIETNAM WAR, and tends to recur under certain circumstances; an inconstant or negative foreign policy agenda that opts-out of missions or alliances, even after American troops have been committed to battle. The VIETNAM SYNDROME has been represented, rightly or wrongly, as being responsible for mitigating commitments, inconsistent relations, and/or military defeatism. This rhetorical polemic, often expressed as "another Vietnam" or "no more Vietnams", has been used by commentators to detract or taint diplomatic options, exclusive of military resolutions to international disputes, based upon a presumed repetition of the combat casualties and social upheaval of the Vietnam-era ... which allegation is either a logical fallacy or an illogical postulate. See SHOW THE FLAG, PLAY THE GAME, RUN IT UP THE FLAGPOLE, SHOOT YOURSELF IN THE FOOT, VIETNAMIZATION, WIGGLE ROOM, RULES OF ENGAGEMENT (ROE), FLOWER WAR, LILY-LIVERED. [nb: an "end to the Vietnam syndrome" was proclaimed by George Herbert Walker Bush in 1991; Richard Holbrooke called the Clinton Administration withdrawal of U.S. troops from Somalia "the emergence of a new 'Vietmalia' syndrome", as later reflected in America's actions in Bosnia] [nb: "I lived through the humiliating defeat in Vietnam. I was a platoon leader and company commander there, a paratrooper. So I was down at the fighting end of that war, and like all wars, there's a lot of human suffering that takes place. And we thought we did a very good job, frankly, while we were there and felt good about it, and then the ending was horrible in 1975 when we lost the war, and it sort of invalidated everything that we had done. And the Army went on a roller coaster as a result of it, psychologically and emotionally, to adjust to a humiliating defeat like that. Some of our good people left, others stayed. I was one of them that stayed. And we kind of put the Army back together again over time." by GEN Jack Keane]

VIETNAM VETERANS MEMORIAL / VVM :
after watching the film "The Deer Hunter" in 1979, Vietnam Veteran Jan C. Scruggs first conceived the idea for a Vietnam Veteran's Memorial. Following a design contest, construction on the Washington Mall, dedication ten years after the U.S. departed SVN, and several design additions (eg: statues, flagpole), it has become the most frequently visited public monument in the nation's capital. Sometimes called "VIETNAM WAR Memorial" or "The Wall"; see MEMORIAL DAY, KOREAN WAR VETERANS MEMORIAL, MISSING MAN FORMATION, TAPS.

VIETNAM WAR :
the service period for Vietnam-era war-related benefits covers 4 Aug 1964 - 7 May 1975, which excludes the advisory and support period preceding the conventional conflict; some veterans and historians date the war from the end of the French participation (1954), while others date it from the beginning of American involvement (1945) after the WWII Yalta conference. See RVN, SVN, GVN, VN, SRV, NVN, THE NAM, INDOCHINA, VIETNAMIZATION, DOMINO THEORY, ENCLAVE STRATEGY, LOST GENERATION, KIA, VSM, APOCALYPSE. [nb: Vietnam War (1964-73): 8,744,000 served; 47,369-58,169 battle deaths] [v: Myths of the Vietnam War; Vietnam Chronology] [nb: "The brave men who died in Vietnam, more than 100% of which were black, were the ultimate sacrifice." by Marion Barry, Washington D.C. mayor; "My film (Apocalypse Now) is not a movie. My film is not about Vietnam. It is Vietnam. The way we made it is the way Americans were in Vietnam. We had too much money, access to too much equipment, and little by little we went insane." by Francis Ford Coppola; "The machine overheated. You got inflation and a falling market at one end and college riots at the other and in the middle: forty thousand sons of American mothers killed by shit-smeared bamboo. People don't like having Sonny killed in the jungle any more. Maybe they never liked it, but they used to think it was necessary." by John Updike (1971)]

VIET QUOC :
the VIET QUOC, or "Viet Nam Quoc Dan Dang" was established on 25 December 1927. Its primary objectives were to gain democratic independence and happiness for the Vietnamese people by an armed uprising aimed at toppling the French colonialist regime throughout their fatherland. On 10 February 1930, the VIET QUOC were involved in a general uprising in Ha Noi / Hanoi. The attacks were unsuccessful, and the French government sentenced the leaders to death. Along with the communist party, the VIET QUOC was a member of the Vietnamese Revolutionary Allied League (Viet Nam Cach Menh Dong Minh Hoi, or VNCMDMH). The communists, led by Ho Chi Minh, took control of the government, expelling non-communist parties from the VNCKMDMH and executing members of the political opposition. Taking refuge in South Vietnam, the VIET QUOC joined the armed forces of South Vietnam from 1954-1975. The party is presently in exile. See VIET MINH, BAD GUYS.

VIEW PORT / VIEWING PORT :
see PEEPHOLE.

VIFF :
Vector In Forward Flight, or Vectoring In Forward Flight, being an air combat maneuver wherein the lead airplane in a tail-chase situation manages to slow down dramatically enough that the trailing airplane overtakes, performing a positional switch, enabling a favorable attack upon the newly exposed and now vulnerable enemy airplane; also called "VIFFing". See AEROBATICS. [v: AvnSpeak, an Aerobatics and Aviation Lexicon]

VIGILANCE COMMITTEE :
an unauthorized committee of citizens organized for the maintenance of order and the summary punishment of crime in the absence of regular courts or of efficient jurisprudence; see BLANKET PARTY, AIRMAN ALIGNMENT TOOL, ATTITUDE ADJUSTMENT, SQUEEZE, THIRD DEGREE, RIOT ACT, REGULATOR, PROVOST COURT, PISO'S JUSTICE, MARTIAL LAW. [nb: historically, citizen organizations using such extralegal means have abused their power by intimidating dissenters or suppressing civil rights; cf: nightrider, TERRORIST] [cf: kangaroo court, honor court, grievance committee, vigilance committee, tribunal, sanhedrim] [nb: lynch law is the summary execution of an accused or convicted person by extralegal process, originally from the DRUMHEAD trial of royalists by patriots during the Revolutionary War, eponymously after either Charles Lynch or William Lynch of Pittsylvania, Virginia]

VIGILANTE :
North American RA-5 aircraft. Also, any member of a VIGILANCE COMMITTEE or quasi-judicial agency that exists to establish or preserve public order and safety in the absence of regular legal authority; see REGULATOR, compare MARTIAL LAW.

VIGILANT SENTINEL :
operation in Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, and the Persian Gulf from 1 Dec 1995 to 1 Sep 1997.

VIGILANT WARRIOR :
operation from 14 October through 21 December 1994.

VIKING :
designation given to Mukdahan Control and Reporting Post (CRP).

VILLE :
ostensibly a VILLage or hamlet of domestic dwellings, but widely used to refer to any group of native HOOCHes, including the "shantytowns" of shacks clustered outside every BASE CAMP and around every bridge fortification; also spelled "vill". Compare SHEBANG; see XA, AP, XOM, COMPOUND. [cf: pueblo]

VINEGAR JOE :
Joseph Warren Stilwell; see STILWELL ROAD, CBI, OSS, SHANKER JACK, MOUSY DUNG.

VIOLENCE / VIOLENT :
strong action or rough treatment with an intense or severe effect, especially those characterized as uncontrolled or uncontrollable; forceful acts that cause injury or destruction. Also, an unjust or unwarranted exertion of force or power, as against rights or laws in a takeover. Also, damage through distortion or unwarranted alteration of fact or meaning, as of language or proceeding. Also, furiously ardent or immoderately vehement; impetuously intense. [nb: "It is our inherited violence, our bloody and ruthless attacks with wood and stone against flesh and bone that has created 'civilization' ... and nowadays we preserve our fine art and great books with the threat of science." paraphrase of Anthony Burgess (1989); "A society that presumes a norm of violence and celebrates aggression, whether in the subway, on the football field, or in the conduct of its business, cannot help making celebrities of the people who would destroy it." by Lewis H. Lapham (1985); "Fervor is the weapon of choice of the impotent." by Frantz Fanon (1952); "Women decry violence the whole time they're titillated and fascinated by it ... and shrill little men who are too appalled by violence to do more than echo their sisters are merely compensating for their shrunken genitals! The 'iron fist in a velvet glove' is just a psychosexual fantasy of sadomasochism, but 'blood sports' are cruelest of all for their disparate inequity. If it weren't for transference to surrogates, these self-indulgent effetes, coddled and cosseted in their impregnable sanctuaries, would be incapable of promoting themselves beyond their evolutionary niche. The fact is that violence is an atavism, an aberrant tropism that's dysfunctional in the sedentary creature that has inherited the combative ancestry of our forebears."; "There are situations in life to which the only satisfactory response is a physically violent one. If you don't make that response, you continually relive the unresolved situation over and over in your life." by Russell Hoban (1985); "When bloodlust becomes socially unacceptable, we begin murdering one another's spirit with psychic bullets, hanging the scalps of dead souls from our belts, making lampshades from innocent hearts ... smiling at their misfortune, reveling in our own triumphs."; "Violence can only be concealed by a lie, and the lie can only be maintained by violence. Any man who has once proclaimed violence as his method is inevitably forced to take the lie as his principle." by Aleksandr Isayevich Solzhenitsyn (1973); "Violence is always the shortest distance between two points; and the cost need never be measured because it's already spent by the time anyone arrives." paraphrase of Leon Trotsky (from a 1947 biography of Joseph Stalin in manuscript); "Violence is its own reward ... it restores our self-esteem and builds our confidence, it wins us recognition and respect, it attracts admiration and promotion, it incites competition and the opportunity for even greater success. And like all other rewards, it's degenerating and self-defeating. We are condemned by it, whether we engage in it or not, because it is our milieu ... always and forever poised to strike."]

VIP :
Vietnamese Information Program; being a cooperative PROPAGANDA program that provided incentives to the local population for providing information on enemy activity or location, and for turning in enemy WEAPONs or BOOBY-TRAPs, including hospitals and CACHEs. Also, the conventional abbreviation for Very Important Person or Very Important People, which expression dates from the WWII-era, being the proverbial "800 pound gorilla" or "silverback"; see RAINMAKER, GO TO GUY, ELEPHANT, TOP DOG, BRASS HAT.

VIPER :
introduced to field operations from commercial inventory in 2002, this is a man-portable sighting device with observation and far target location capabilities for day and night operations that renders target range, azimuth, and vertical angle measurements to the operator; system components include 7X42mm [Leica Vector IV] binoculars, LASER range finder, digital magnetic compass, inclinometer, Precision Global Positioning System Receiver (PLGR), and Monocular Night Vision Device (MNVD). See FIELD GLASSES, PEEPERS, GLASS, NOD, NVD, NVG. [nb: in an effort to control costs and reduce waste, the DoD has instituted a policy of "non-duplication" in military procurement (Military Adaptable Commercial Item {MACI}), such that a mil-spec contract will NOT be let whenever a commercial "off the shelf" (COTS) product is "close enough for government work" and does not require special features; so some name brand items are now in logistical inventory] Also, any venomous snake that's characterized by a pair of hollow fangs that can be erected for biting and injecting venom: such as the banded KRAIT, hooded COBRA, BAMBOO VIPER, Russell's viper, and others, including pit vipers (possessed of a heat-sensitive pit on each side of its head between the eye and nostril).

VIS :
Vietnam Information Service, being responsible for the development and dissemination of public information concerning the government of the Republic of Vietnam (RVN); compare USIS.

VISA :
(carta visa) see PASSPORT. [cf: carnet] [v: Diplomatic Terms]

VISOBS :
(viz-obs) a contraction of VISual OBServation posts; compare OP, CROW'S NEST.

VISOR HAT :
slang for the SERVICE CAP, also called "brim cap", BILLED CAP, "wheel hat", SAUCER CAP, "pizza hat" (USMC), and "Donald Duck cap" (USN), as worn by all branches and grades with variations of color, style, and insignia; the so-called "fifty mission crush" (CRUSHER) has had the stiffening removed so that headphones could be worn over the hat. See SCRAMBLED-EGGS, SPAGHETTI, FARTS 'n' DARTS, COMBINATION COVER, BARRACKS COVER, CONTRAFOIL, GARRISON CAP, CAMPAIGN HAT, BERET, HEADGEAR.

VISTA :
acronym for Volunteers In Service To America; established in 1965 as a humanitarian service organization in Lyndon Baines Johnson's "War on Poverty" program, and subsumed in 1993 by William Jefferson Clinton's AmeriCorps network of public agencies and non-profit organizations, a division of the Corporation for National and Community Service. Volunteers work in education, agriculture, forestry, construction, medicine, business, and numerous other fields. Like IVS and PEACE CORPS, VISTA qualifies as "alternative service" for conscientious objectors and anti-war PROTESTORs. See ADV, CA, CAP, COUNTERPART, LITTLE BROWN BROTHER, INDIG, SPARTAN, VOLUNTOLD, DRAFT LOTTERY.

VISUAL :
aviation call confirming the identification of a friendly aircraft down range, being in the designated sector or area of responsibility without subject to attack; compare BOGIE, BANDIT, JUDY, TALLY-HO, SPLASH; see IFF, SQUAWK, PRIMROSE PATH, RULES OF ENGAGEMENT (ROE).

VISUAL LANGUAGE TRANSLATOR :
a set of laminated cards picturing illustrative cartoons with a word or phrase in the several languages of the region that were spelled-out phonetically for non-linguists to use when attempting to communicate with indigenous personnel in the SANDBOX. See POINTIE TALKIE.

VITAMIN M :
[Motrin (ibuprofen)] see RANGER CANDY.

VLF :
Very Low Frequency, a slow pulse radio signal spectrum similar to Extremely Low Frequency (ELF) that's also transmitted from a permanently fixed base, but without the ability to pass through solid objects (eg: ice, stone); see RADIO WAVE, RADIO.

VMA :
U.S. Navy designation for Marine Attack Squadron.

V-MAIL :
the contracted form of Victory Mail, being a system of censored personal correspondence that was dispatched on specially designed fold-over forms that served as both stationery and envelopes for American Armed Forces personnel during WWII; in order to save space and expedite distribution after 1943, V-Mail letters were sorted and photographed, then the film was sent so it could be reprinted for delivery. See MAIL CALL, SUGAR REPORT, CIRCULAR LETTER, LETTER BOX, ASH 'n' TRASH, COMM SHACK, MARS, TWX, GRAYMAIL, NETRUSION, DEAD LETTER, FLAPS 'n' SEALS.

VMB :
U.S. Navy designation for Marine Bomber Squadron.

VMF :
U.S. Navy designation for Marine Fighter Squadron.

VMFA :
U.S. Navy designation for Marine Fighter Attack Squadron.

VMO :
U.S. Navy designation for Marine Observation Squadron.

VMP :
U.S. Navy designation for Marine Photo Reconnaissance Squadron.

VMR :
U.S. Navy designation for Marine Airlift Squadron.

VMSB :
U.S. Navy designation for Marine Scout Bomber Squadron.

VMTB :
U.S. Navy designation for Marine Torpedo Bomber Squadron.

VMU :
U.S. Navy designation for Marine Unmanned Aerial Vehicle squadron, which operates Remotely Piloted Vehicles (RPV) over operational areas for Regimental Combat Teams (RCT).

VN :
Vietnam or Viet Nam; the name of the country is traditionally two words, but the war adopted the one word convention. Most ADVISOR veterans, linguists, and scholars still observe the distinction. See GVN, SVN, RVN, THE NAM, PASSAGE TO FREEDOM, FREQUENT WIND, DMZ, DRV, NVN, SRV.

VNAF :
RVN Air Force emblem
VNAF
Viet Nam Air Force; represented by a red and black dragon with wings symbolizing the RVN flag in yellow and red emblazoned on a blue shield above a scroll with the motto "To-Quoc Khong Gian". See AFVN; compare ARVN, VNMC, VNN. [v: Viet-Nam Military Terms]

VNMC :
RVN Marine Corps emblem
Vietnamese Marine Corps
insignia
RVNMC
Viet Nam Marine Corps, consisting of five infantry battalions and one artillery brigade; established as a brigade in 1960, then became a separate service in 1965, equal to the Vietnamese Navy (VNN), and increased to division size in 1969. Vietnamese form of their name is Thuy Quan Luc Chien (TQLC), and their motto is "Honor and Country" (Danh-Du To-Quoc). See USMC; compare ARVN, VNAF, AFVN. [v: Viet-Nam Military Terms]

VNN :
Viet Nam Navy; see AFVN, compare ARVN, VNAF, VNMC. [v: Viet-Nam Military Terms]

VNSF :
RVN Tony the Tiger Special
Forces patch
ARVN SF
Vietnamese Special Forces, or Luc Luong Dac Biet (LLDB). See SES, STD, THUNDER TIGER, BORDER DEFENSE RANGER. [v: Viet-Nam Military Terms] [nb: the "leaping tiger" motif of the LLDB/VNSF patch was variously adapted during the VIETNAM WAR by the Vietnamese, many of whom had attended specialized training in American military centers, with the most ironic being their adoption of the "Tony the Tiger" symbol used to advertise Kellogg breakfast cereals and Esso gasoline since 1941 ... the Vietnamese enlistment of this cartoon figure as a mascot for their most elite force led many GIs to comment scathingly about their prowess]

VOCO :
(vee-oh-see-oh) Verbal Order of the Commanding Officer, used to document verbal authorization after the fact; sometimes represented as "Verbal Order of the Commanding General" (VOCG). See COMMAND VOICE, ORDER.

VODKA :
see RUSSIAN ROCKET FUEL.

VOICE OF AMERICA :
see AFR, AFRTN, AFRTS, USIS, VIS.

VOICE OF COMMAND :
see COMMAND VOICE.

VOICE OF THE GULF :
see AFR, AFRTN, AFRTS, USIS.

VOLAR :
VOLunteer ARmy; see AVF, TOTAL FORCE. [nb: the military has an involuntary "stop-loss" authority, which allows each branch to compel soldiers who reach the end of their enlistment to remain in uniform for "the good of the service"]

VOLLEY :
the simultaneous discharge of a number of firearms or MISSILEs, also called "volley fire"; compare SALVO, FUSILLADE, BROADSIDE, ENFILADE, STORM, DRUMFIRE, IN THE AIR, AT CLOSE QUARTERS, SALUTE. Also, the return or transfer of the object or subject of PING-PONG, as to rally without resolution; as derived from flight.

VOLPLANE :
to glide toward the earth in an airplane without motor power (or with the engine power shut off); literally meaning "glided flight". Compare AUTO-ROTATE; see LETDOWN, JOYSTICK, STICK.

VOLUNTEER :
a person who willingly performs a function or serves a DUTY, sometimes with low or no pay, for the privilege of association or the distinction of participation; a person who acts without legal obligation or other compulsion. Also, to offer oneself or one's service for some purpose or undertaking. Compare DRAFTEE, VOLUNTOLD; see MUSTER, ENLIST, RA, CALL TO THE COLORS, TOTAL FORCE, VOLAR, AVF. [nb: Vietnamese term: Quan Tinh Nguyen] [nb: the cardinal military maxim is "never volunteer", but the best training and preferred jobs always required a voluntary quid-pro-quo] [nb: Tennessee acquired its nickname, "The Volunteer State", as a result of its overwhelming support of the War of 1812 between America and Great Britain] [cf: warison; v: clarion call] [nb: the military has an involuntary "stop-loss" authority, which allows each branch to compel soldiers who reach the end of their enlistment to remain in uniform for "the good of the service"]

VOLUNTOLD :
someone whose participation has been volunteered for them, such as a "mandatory volunteer" at an event or a job of work; seemingly contracted from "told to volunteer", which derives from 'wish'. It typically refers to unpaid work or gratuitous labor provided by an amateur or non-professional who can be recruited by someone in authority ... such as enlisted members by their officers, and dependents by their sponsors. Even though participation in this arrangement is not required, it is strongly recommended, and a lack of participation is frowned upon by the powers that be. Compare MANDATORY FUN, DRAFTEE, CONSCRIPT; see DRAFT DODGER, SPARTAN, IRC, AMERICAN FRIENDS SERVICE COMMITTEE, PEACE CORPS, IVS, VISTA. [v: good Samaritan, volunteerism]

VOMIT COMET :
rhyming slang for any aircraft used to fly the occupants in a parabolic curve so as to test someone's physiological responses to simulated weightlessness.

VOODOO :
the McDonnell F-101/RF-101 interceptor and photo-reconnaissance aircraft, developed from the XF-88 interceptor; see BIRD. Also, a group of exotic spells and ecstatic rites associated with the corrupt cult worship that derives from animism and polytheism, including "black magic" fetishism; hence any sacrosanct incantation that imbues profound authority or evokes supernatural intervention (eg: NATIONAL SECURITY, ACT OF CONGRESS); see SMOKE 'n' MIRRORS, FAIRY DUST, the magic words "open sesame" at ALI BABA, PASSWORD, HOODOO, CHARMS, ABRACADABRA, MOJO, JOSS STICK, WIZARD, RAINMAKER, TECHNOLOGY.

VOQ :
(vee-oh-que, not "vock") Visiting Officer's Quarters, also called "Transient Officer's Quarters"; see QTRS. [aka: "Vagrant Officer's Quickie", "Very Occasionally Quiet", "hot sheet hotel", "no tell motel", "riding academy"; v: hotel, inn, lodge, hostelry, gasthaus, guesthouse, resort, boardinghouse, hospice, pension, public house, tavern, roadhouse, motel, motor inn, motor lodge, caravansary/caravanserai]

VOR :
an acronym for Very-high-frequency Omnidirectional-radio Range, or Vhf OmniRange; an air navigational radio aid which uses phase comparison of a ground transmitted signal to determine bearing; a ground-based navigation aid transmitting very high frequency (VHF) navigation signals 360degrees in azimuth, on radials oriented from magnetic north, periodically identifying itself by MORSE CODE, which may include a voice identification feature that can also broadcast information from air traffic control (ATC) or flight service station (FSS). Also called "omnirange", as developed after WWII to replace the Adcock Range system. If a radio beam Instrument Landing System (ILS) or Tactical Air Control And Navigation (TACAN) are colocated with a VOR, then distance and GLIDE SLOPE guidance will be provided with the basic location indicator. See VECTOR, BEAM, PIRAZ, VORTAC, MEACONING, REFERENCE POINT (RP); compare IMC, VFR.

VORTAC / VOR-TAC :
the colocation of Very-high-frequency Omnidirectional-radio Range (VOR) and Tactical Air Control And Navigation (TACAN) providing bearing and range or distance to a station; a basic guidance mode, providing combined radio navigation aids for lateral guidance to a VOR station colocated with a TACAN station.

VOTER :
any enfranchised CITIZEN, also known as an "elector" or "constituent"; a local resident, ignorant of the facts and too lazy to attend to himself, who abuses the privilege of suffrage to extend his self-interest further and further, then accepting no responsibility for the consequences of his indulgence. [nb: the Military and Overseas Empowerment Act mandates that voters in U.S. jurisdictions be able to receive and track their ballots electronically] [nb: "The ballot is stronger than the bullet." by Abraham Lincoln; "It's not the voting that's democracy, it's the counting." by Tom Stoppard; "Voters don't decide issues, they decide who will decide issues." by George F. Will; "Elector: one who enjoys the sacred privilege of voting for the man of another man's choice." by Ambrose Gwinnett Bierce; "Voter: a selfish denizen, begrudging of his paltry taxes, who demands public service and government protection to an extent that he would not willingly render a good neighbor."; "Voters are like children: they're afraid of the dark and they expect parents to comfort and protect them ... unfortunately, the dark is real and a parental government is part of the problem."] [v: cattle show, Australian ballot, rotten borough]

VOTING MACHINE :
sardonic reference to an ARVN TANK, which seemingly appeared only during a COUP D'ETAT, being ordinarily preoccupied with safeguarding political resorts, financial institutions, and other similarly steadfast establishments; the VOTING MACHINE differs from its armored antecedents in that it's highly polished, mostly immobile, and almost never deployed as anything other than an implied threat.

VP :
seal of the Vice President of
the United States
VPOTUS
(veep) Vice President of the United States; also cited as VPOTUS, and also spelled vice-president; being second in order of succession, president of the Senate, presiding officer of the electoral college, member of the National Security Council (NSC), constitutionally acts as agent for POTUS, but is not restricted by term limits. A vice presidential flag was first used at a foreign exposition when the VP was representing the president, but was not authorized until 1916, then it was revised with a seal in 1945, being the reverse of the presidential colors. See OLYMPUS, GREEN ACRES, MANDARIN, POLITICIAN. [nb: "My country has in its wisdom contrived for me the most insignificant office that ever the invention of man contrived or his imagination conceived." by John Adams (19 Dec 1793 letter); "I do not propose to be buried until I am really dead." attributed to Daniel Webster (when declining the 1848 Whig vice-presidency); "(The vice-presidency is) A spare tire on the automobile of government." by John Nance Garner; "The office of vice president is not worth a bucket of warm piss." (or "The vice presidency isn't worth a warm bucket of piss.") by John Nance Garner; "Here (the vice-presidency) is one instance in which it is the man who makes the office, not the office the man." by Harry S. Truman]

VPA :
Vietnam People's Army, which designates the ground forces of the Socialist Republic of Vietnam (SRV); see PAVN, PLA, NVA, BO DOI, GOMER, VC, CHARLIE, LONGHAIR, LUKE THE GOOK, BAD GUYS.

VPOTUS :
see VP; compare FLOTUS, SCOTUS.

VR :
Visual Reconnaissance, to EYE-BALL the terrain or situation, as by C&C, FAC, or COVER; sometimes used as an excuse to "joy ride". Compare CA, ASH 'n' TRASH, HAIRY EYEBALL, DOUBLE-O, CHECK IT OUT, EYE-CHECK.

V/R :
abbreviation for Very Respectfully; being the concise form of polite closure used above the signature block on official e-mail ... sometimes used on stationery in official correspondence, but this application generally represents a bureaucratic solecism in these cases.

V-SIGN :
two-finger V-sign
V-sign
an informal two-finger gesture representing 'V' for 'victory' that became prominent during WWII, initially sponsored by the Allies as a covert signal of solidarity, then as a prohibited HAND SIGN that the enemy would punish by summary execution. Made famous by Winston L.S. Churchill, this V-SIGN was used throughout the war whenever people lacked a common language or lingua franca to signify their support or friendship ... as Japanese pressure became more intense, Americans began to interpret the V-SIGN from Filipinos as "vanish" instead of 'victory'! Also, the same informal two-finger gesture was used during the VIETNAM WAR to represent 'peace' and friendship, being a HAND SIGN that expressed a patriotic tolerance of "do your own thing" diversity; also known as a "peace sign".

VSTOL :
Vertical / Short Take-Off and Landing; see STOL, compare VTOL, JATO.

VT / VT FUZE :
Variable Time, or Variable Time fuze, being an artillery fuze that incorporated a small RADAR transceiver, which was used to obtain a reliable airburst; see PROXIMITY FUZE.

VTC :
Video TeleConference; see FONECON, TWX, TTY, CONTEL, TELECON.

VTOL :
Vertical Take-Off and Landing aircraft (eg: tilt-wing V-22 OSPREY and AV-8B /-R HARRIER). See VSTOL, compare STOL, JATO.

VTR :
tracked recovery vehicle, or in MIL-SPEAK: Vehicle Tracked Recovery, being a "tow-truck" for APCs, TANKs, and SP HOWITZERs; see ARV, LOW BOY.

VTSZ :
Vung Tau Special Zone; see RSSZ.

VUA :
U.S. Army Valorous Unit Award
VUA
Valorous Unit Award, effective 3 Aug 1963; sometimes called "Valorous Unit Citation" (VUC) by association with PUC and MUC. The Valorous Unit Award depicts the colored design of the Silver Star (SS), being the third highest award for bravery, because it is only presented to units that have performed in such a manner on the battlefield that every member of that unit would have earned an individual Silver Star. See UNIT CITATION, GONG.

VULCAN :
a Gatling-style six-barrel 20mm cannon (M-61A1), being a rotating machinegun system manufactured by General Electric, forming an integral part of the armament of such modern-day fighters as the F-15, F-16, and F-18; compare MINIGUN, MOANING MINI; see MOAN 'n' GROAN, BOFORS, HOSE.

VULCANIZE :
by analogy to the manufacturing process for hardening rubber, figuratively to increase the strength, durability, elasticity, or hardness of someone or something; to make impervious or invulnerable by shielding or immunization, as made literally or figuratively BULLETPROOF, or to acquire "shit repellent". See CYA, WANGLE, DODGE THE BULLET, FAIRY DUST, THE GLASS CLIFF, BOOJIE, PING-PONG, MILICRAT, TICKET-PUNCHER, RING-KNOCKER, CASTE, BREVET, DEEP DIP; compare OLD BREED, SHEEP-DIPPED, CHOP, ACHILLES HEEL, CHINK, MAGIC BULLET, GOLDEN BB, SILVER BULLET, KICKSTANDED. [nb: vulcanization was invented in 1833, and the vulcanization process was patented by Charles Goodyear in 1844, and has been used metaphorically since the American CIVIL WAR]

VULGAR :
common or ordinary, undistinguished or unrefined, banal or colloquial, as being in the everyday vernacular generally spoken by the regular people; the facility to communicate understandably with the local population in their own language; see POLYGLOT, VERNACULAR, PERIPHRASIS, LINGUA FRANCA, TALK THE TALK, GOOKANESE, PIDGIN, BAMBOO ENGLISH, PIG LATIN, DOG LATIN, CREOLE, MIL-SPEAK. Also, the common views or popular beliefs shared by the ordinary people in a society, which lack distinction or aesthetic value; compare BEST AND BRIGHTEST, WISE MEN, BRAIN TRUST, MANDARIN, CLUB FED. Also, characterized by an ignorance of good taste or a lack of good breeding; lacking in refinement. Also, indecent or obscene, lewd or prurient.

VULGARITY / VULGARISM :
boorish crudity, unrefined rudeness; see EXPLETIVE, OATH, GODDAM, SWEAR, VULGAR, FUCK, BAD-MOUTH, TALK TRASH.

VULTURE'S ROW :
the superstructural catwalks and galleries on ships, especially along the ISLAND of an aircraft carrier, where OFF-DUTY crewmembers often congregate to watch sea and air operations, like a line of roosting birds; also known as "goofing stations". Compare EYE-BALL, PEANUT GALLERY, GUNDECKING.

VUNG TAU SPECIAL ZONE :
see VTSZ, RSSZ.

VWT :
Vertical Wind Tower, being a hollow building surmounted by a propeller that can generate a 150mph airflow, with interior catwalks and appropriate padding, that's used to train parachutists in the appropriate body postures for skydiving; comparable to a JUMP TOWER, this facility was designed by SGM Santos Alfredo Matos Jr., and is also known as a "military free-fall simulator". The British version is called a "vertical wind tunnel". See MFF, FREE-FALL, HARP, HAHO, HALO, LALO, AMFFPC, PARACHUTE. [v: Parachuting Terms, and Parachuting History]




MilTerms
index
S-1:
ADMIN
S-2:
INTEL
S-3:
OPNS
S-4:
QM
S-5:
CA
S-6:
COMMO
Site
Map
Home
Page





C O M B A T