What he say??? 11th Infantry Brigade The 11th Infantry Unit History



What he say???

The Vietnam war developed a new language, Namspeak or nam'spk. 
It was a combination of military terms, GI slang from World War II and the Korean War, flavored by Southern US and Urban Ghetto terminology with various Vietnamese words or terms thrown in for good measure. You would frequently hear someone new in country (FNG's) trying to follow a conversation, ask: "what he say?

Although some of the language has been filtered to alter some of the "more colorful" terminology, the concept is still there, so please use judgment if viewing this page with a minor.

Copyright 2001 Charlie Company, U S A . All Rights Reserved

 

A Acid .................AW N Napalm ..............NVA
B B40.................. Busting Caps O OIC ....................Oscar-Poppa
C C4.................... Corpsman P P-38 ....................Push
D Dai wi ............ Dust Off   Q Quad-50 .............Q-Service
E Elephant .........ETS R R & R ................Ruck-Sack
F FAC.................Funny Paper S SA ......................Super-Quick
G Get Some........Gun Truck T TA-312 ..............Two Step
H H & I ..............Hump U UCMJ ...............UTM
I Illum ................IP V Viet Cong ..........VTR
J Jody ................Jungle Rot W Waste ................World
K K-Bar............. Klick X XM-177E2 .........XO
L La Dai ............LZ Y Yankee Station ..Yards
M Mac ................Mustang  Z Zapped ...............Zulu Time
# Tools of the Trade

 

A
  • Acid - LSD, a hallucinogen
  • Agent Orange - A chemical defoliant/herbicide containing 2-4-T Dioxin
  • Air Cav - Air cavalry, helicopter borne infantry assault unit.
  • AK47 - Soviet/ChiCom 7.62mm assault rifle
  • Albumen - a blood expanding agent carried by medics to replace lost blood
  • Angel - A helicopter that hovers near a carrier to pick up pilots who crash
  • AO - Area of Operations
  • APC - Armored Personnel Carrier
  • APDS - Armor Piercing Discarding Sabot - Anti-tank round.
  • ARA - Aerial Rocket Artillery - helicopter gunships
  • Arc-Lite - Radio code for a 3 ship Cell B-52 Strike
  • Arty - Artillery
  • ARVN - "Army" of the Republic of Vietnam
  • ALVB - Armored Vehicle Launched Bridge
  • AW - Automatic Weapons

Return to Index 

 

B
  • B40 - Armor defeating shaped charge projectile fired by RPG2 and RPG7
  • Bad - Good
  • Bandaid Box - Radio code for the medic vehicle, usually an M-113 APC
  • Bandaid - Radio code for the medic
  • Baseball Grenade - Defensive Fragmentation hand grenade: explodes on impact
  • Beaten Zone- Where most bullets will impact when a machine gun is fired into the bush
  • Beaucoup - A whole lot of something!
  • Beehive Round - 90mm cannon round containing 8,500 darts or "flechettes" called "Green Can"
  • Bell Telephone Hour - The "interrogation" of VC suspects using electric shocks generated by a field telephone.
  • Bic - Vietnamese for "understand" GI pidgin: "You bic?" means "do you understand"
  • Big Boy - Radio code for a tank
  • Big Boys - Radio code for a artillery
  • Bird - Any aircraft
  • Black Can - 90mm Canister round containing 1,000 1/2x5/16 inch pellets
  • Blivet - huge rubber bladder container for water or diesel fuel: towed or airlifted
  • Blood - A black GI, from blood-brother
  • Blooper - M79 Grenade launcher, also known as a thumper
  • Blue Legs - Infantrymen
  • Blue Line - Radio code for a stream or river
  • BMFIC - Big Mother F***** In Charge
  • Bode - Cambodian
  • Bogart -To hang onto a joint too long
  • Bolter - A plane that misses the arrest wire when landing on a carrier
  • Boom Boom - Sex with a prostitute
  • Boom Boom Girl - A prostitute
  • Boonies - The boondocks, out in the bush
  • Boot - A new soldier, usually straight from boot camp
  • Bouncing Betty - A tripwire mine, designed to explode at groin height
  • Box - Radio code for an M-113 APC
  • Brown Water Navy - US Navy units operating in the muddy water of the Mekong Delta
  • Bug Juice - Insect Repellent
  • Bush - Anywhere out of base camp where contact might be made with the enemy
  • Busting Caps - Firing a weapon

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C
  • C4 - White clay-like plastic explosive, great for heating C-Rations
  • C-Rations (C-Rat) - Canned food carried on operations
  • C and C - Command and Control Ship, usually a Huey, sometimes a Loach
  • Cammies - Camouflage fatigues
  • Capping - Shooting
  • CAR-15 - Carbine version of M-16 with collapsible stock 
  • Charlie - Viet Cong, from military voice designation for VC, Victor Charlie
  • Charlie Charlie - Command and Control Helicopter
  • Charles - Formal reference to Charlie
  • Charm School - Initial training and orientation upon arrival
  • Cherry - A young, inexperienced GI
  • Cherry Juice - Hydraulic fluid in tank turret traversing system
  • Cherry School - Initial training and orientation upon arrival
  • Chicom - Chinese Communist, used for describing grenade or rifle
  • Chinook - a CH-47 transport helicopter
  • Chu Hoi - I surrender, "Open Arms" - RVN Amnesty program for NVA/VC
  • Chopper - Helicopter
  • CIB - Combat Infantryman Badge
  • CIDG - Civilian Irregular Defense Group
  • Claymore - Wide swath anti-personnel mine
  • CSWC - Crew Served Weapon, found/captured

  • Coax - the coaxially mounted M-73 7.62mm machine gun
  • Cobra - The AH-1G helicopter gunship
  • Cockadau - Derivative of Vietnamese slang, meaning "to kill"
  • Coke Girl - A Vietnamese woman entrepreneur (sold just about everything)
  • Concertina - A circular hoop-braded barbed wire
  • Concussion Bomb - A bomb containing kerosene that vaporized and exploded
  • Condolence Award - Compensation paid to the family of a dead ARVN trooper
  • Contact - Firing on or being fired upon by the enemy
  • Country Team - US Embassy personnel
  • Corpsman - Medic

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D
  • Dai wi (Dow wi ) - Captain, Leader, Chief
  • Daisy Cutter - a 10,000 pound bomb used to clear an LZ, dropped by C130 
  • Danger Close - an air strike or artillery mission within 100 meters of your location
  • Dawk - Someone who disapproved of the war, but would not demonstrate against it.
  • Dee-Dee - To leave
  • Delta-Delta - Doughnut dollies (or nurses)
  • Delta Tango - (Designated Targets) - Pre-selected mortar or artillery targets located in daylight for use at night
  • Detcord - Explosive that looks like rope- used to daisy-chain claymores
  • Deuce-and-a-half - 2+ ton truck, also a 6x6
  • DEROS - Date eligible for return from overseas
  • Diddy bopping - Walking carelessly
  • Dink - Derogatory term for Vietnamese
  • Dinky-dao - (say: "dinky dow") Crazy, See "Fugazi"
  • District Mobile Company - The basic VC fighting unit
  • Doc - Marine nickname for corpsman
  • Donut Dolly (ies) - Nurses or female members of the the American Red Cross
  • Doper - A pot smoker
  • Dow wi  (Dai wi) - Captain, Leader, Chief
  • Downers - Depressant drugs especially barbiturates, the small pill (codeine) inside an APC gel cap, passed out by our medics mostly to get through the day
  • Dragon Wagon - a tank transporter, also called Low Boy
  • Driver - Aircraft pilot
  • Dumbo - A C-123 Provider of the USAF
  • Duster - an M42, an old M24 tank chassis with two 40mm AA guns in an open turret
  • Dustoff - Medical evacuation by helicopter.

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E
  • Elephant - Large gray looking thing with a trunk
  • Elephant - Radio code for an M48-A3
  • Elephant Grass - tall, sharp-edged grass found in the highlands of Vietnam
  • ELINT - Poor intelligence gathered electronically at great expense
  • Em - Vietnamese for brother or friend
  • EOD - Explosive Ordnance Disposal
  • ETS - (Estimated Termination of Service) - the day you separate from the Army

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F
  • FAC - Forward Air Controller
  • Fast Mover - FAC radio code for an F100, F105, or F4C aircraft
  • Fatigues - OD green BDU's
  • Fifty - the .50 caliber machine gun
  • Finger Charge - A booby trap device named for it's size
  • Firebase - A temporary artillery base to support ground operations
  • Fire Brigade - An extremely mobile unit rushed to the scene of an enemy attack
  • Firefight - An exchange of small arms fire
  • FNG - F***  New Guy
  • FO - Forward Observer, an artilleryman, usually an officer
  • Frag - Offensive Fragmentation hand grenade: five second fuse
    Fragging - The murder of an incompetent and dangerous officer with a frag grenade
  • Free fire zone - An area cleared of civilians where ground troops or artillery could fire without prior clearance (like My Lai, pronounced: em li )
  • Friendlies - Other US or allied troops
  • Friendly Fire - Officially called "Misadventure" 
  • Fire Mission - Radio request to the artillery for HE fire support
  • FSB - Fire Support Base: usually a battery of 3, 105mm howitzers with a perimeter
  • Fugazi - Crazy, screwed up
  • Funny Money - Military Payment Certificates, scrip issued in lieu of dollars
  • Funny Paper - Radio code for a topographic map

Return to Index 

 

G
  • Get Some - Kill the enemy
  • Goofy Grape - Radio code for purple smoke
  • Gook - Derogatory term for Vietnamese (Actually means "person" in Korean)
  • GP - General Purpose bomb. Can kill troops or bust bunkers
  • Greased - Killed
  • Green Backing - Employing mercenaries
  • Green Can - 90mm cannon round containing 8,500 darts or flechettes
  • Ground Pounder - A "grunt", light infantry
  • Grunts - Infantrymen
  • Gunny - Marine gunnery sergeant
  • Gunship - Combat armed helicopter  with various weapons
  • Gun Target Line - Line of fire between gun and target
  • Gun Truck - Truck with added armor and machine guns

Return to Index 

 

H
  • H & I - Harassing and Interdicting artillery fire
  • Ham & Mother*** - C-Ration delicacy of Ham and Lima beans
  • Hard Hat - Full time VC soldier as opposed to a reservist or guerrilla
  • Hash - Hashish
  • Haul A** - To leave quickly
  • Hawk - Radio code for ambush team
  • Hawkeye - Use varied, a US sniper or  an O-1 aircraft with a starlight scope
  • HE - High Explosive
  • Head - Heavily into something, e.g. pothead
  • Hit - A puff on a marijuana cigarette
  • HEAT - High Explosive Anti-Tank - fin-stabilized armor defeating projectile
  • HEP - High Explosive Plastic (Composition B)
  • HHC - Headquarters and Headquarters Company
  • Hog - A model B Huey with 48 2.75in. rockets and 4 M-60's
  • Hoi Chanh - an enemy soldier who took advantage of the Chu Hoi program
  • Home Plate - A carrier or airfield where an aircraft is based
  • Honcho - The boss
  • Hootch - Military accommodations or a peasant shack or hut
  • Hootch Girl - A Vietnamese maid
  • Hook (S*** hook) - short for a CH-47 Chinook
  • Horn - the radio
  • Hot - An area under fire or attack
  • Huey - A UH-1D Helicopter
  • Hump - To carry pack equipment, armaments, etc.

Return to Index  

 

I
  • Illum - Illumination rounds fired by artillery, mortar, M79, or dropped by aircraft
  • In-Country - In South Vietnam
  • Indian Country - Area controlled by Charles
  • IP - Initial Point - A reference point in the attack
  • IWC - Individual Weapon Captured

    Return to Index  

 

J
  • Jody - The "Guy" who was back home with your girlfriend
  • Joint - A marijuana cigarette
  • Jolly Green Giant - A USAF rescue helicopter
  • JP-4 - Fuel for Hueys and turbine aircraft
  • Jungle Boot - Nylon & leather boots with stainless steel shank and holes to drain water. The holes let more water in then they drained out
  • Jungle Fatigues - tropical weight jacket and pants
  • Jungle Penetrator - Torpedo shaped device for extracting wounded in triple-canopy rain-forest
  • Jungle Rot - Any of a number of fungal infections caused by moisture in Vietnam

Return to Index 

 

K
  • KBA - Killed by Artillery
  • K-Bar - Military combat knife
  • KIA - Killed In Action
  • Kill Zone - An area around an explosive devise where 95% fatalities are predicted
  • Kit Carson Scout - A VC regular working for the Allies
  • KCS - Kit Carson Scout
  • Khmer Rouge - Cambodian commandos
  • Klick - 1,000 meters, 1 kilometer, 

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Copyright 2001 Charlie Company, U S A . All Rights Reserved