Military Terms from HBO Generation Kill

Military Terms from HBO Generation Kill

If you are watching the HBO Series Generation Kill, its a good show and quite accurate.

Maybe its been a while since active duty and your memory has faded?

Maybe you’re a civilian that wants to understand the terms?

Here is a list of some the military terms used in the HBO series “Generation Kill”. Most are actual terms used in the Military.


556: The diameter of the rounds/bullets in millimeters used by US and NATO forces in rifles and light machine guns.

Assassin: In this story, its the radio call sign for First RECON’s Alpha Company; Assassin Actual is Alpha Company’s Commander, Captain Patterson.

AO: Area of Operation.

AOE: Area Of Engagement.

ASS: Assets. Such as defensive or offensive devices or capabilities.

BDA: Battle Damage Assessment.

CASEVAC: Emergency Casualty Evacuation from a combat zone. “DUSTOFF” would also be used by the Army.

CAAT Team: Combined Anti-Armor Team

Chaos: In this story, the radio call sign for the character, General Mattis.

Corpsman: Enlisted member of a Navy medical unit. However, in this story, they show us the very few and Elite Navy members assigned to a Marine unit. In addition to their primary duties, they also do a majority of the same jobs and training as the Marines. Marines give them the distinguished title of “Devil Doc”.

Cleared Hot: Given permission to fire your weapon by a superior.

Danger Close: Friendly units are within 600 meters of the intended impact point.

FAC: Forward Air Controller. The primary function of the FAC is ensuring the safety of friendly troops during close air support.

Fire Mission: The assignment of a specific target. Orders may also include when to fire and the amount of ammunition to be used.

Forty Mike-Mike: 40 millimeters; refers to either an individual 40mm self-propelled grenade round, or the weapon that launches them, such as the MK-19 grenade launcher.

Glassed: The action of observing a potential threat/target with binoculars or rifle scope. Both have glass lenses.

Godfather: Call sign of the character in this story, Lieutenant Colonel Ferrando.

HBO says he got this name due to the sound of his voice.

Haji: In this show, its a slang term for an Iraqi. It also means a Muslim who has been to Mecca as a pilgrim.

H&S: The Headquarters and Supply company. Part of the main unit that is responsible for supporting “line companies” or combat units made up of Alpha, Bravo, and Charlie Companies.

Helo-Hot: Missile fired from a combat helicopter such as an Cobra.

Hitman Two One Actual: In this story its Bravo Company’s Second Platoon Team One Leader, Sergeant Colbert.

While “Hitman Two One” refers to the entire team, “Actual” means the actual Team Leader.

“Hitman Two” refers to all of Bravo second platoon, but “Hitman Two Actual” is the platoon commander, Lieutenant Fick. In real life, Nathaniel Fick was a USMC Captain with 2nd Platoon, Bravo Company, 1st Reconnaissance Battalion.

Hitman Victor: In this story, any vehicle within Bravo Company. Remember, “Hitman” is the code for Bravo Company (see above) as a whole.

Interrogative: Radio code prefacing a question. Having or conveying the force of a question. Thinking of “interrogate” may help understand the importance.

LAV: Light Armored Vehicle

LOD: Line Of Departure

Klicks: Kilometers

Mikes: Minutes

MOPP Suit: Mission Oriented Protective Posture (MOPP) Gear

MSR: Main Supply Route

NJP: Non-Judicial Punishment. A form of military justice authorized by Article 15 of the Uniform Code of Military Justice. NJP permits commanders to administratively discipline troops without a court-martial.

NVG: Night Vision Goggles

Oscar Mike: On the Move

Pec-fours, Pec-thirteens: Types of night and infrared vision scopes.

“Pec” is short for “PVS” which means Portable Visual Search. The numbers represent the device model, such as the AN/PVS-4 and AN/PVS-13.

POG: Person Other than Grunt. We could really embellish on this one, but we will be nice.

PX: Post eXchange. It’s an Army store. Each branch has their own names for these stores:

PX= Post Exchange for Army
BX = Base Exchange for Air Force
NEX = Naval Exchange for Navy
MCX = Marine Corps Exchange for Marines

Raptor: In this story, its the radio call sign for First RECON’s Charlie Company.

RCT1: In this story, it is the Regimental Combat Team 1

ROE: Rules of Engagement. Directives that delineate the circumstances and limitations under which United States forces will initiate and/or continue combat engagement.

We abide by many Laws of War. 

The Law of War is defined as that part of international law that governs the conduct of armed hostilities. There are many principles underlying the Law of War, as well as many classifications of persons that may be found on the battlefield.

“Law of War” is often referred to as the “Law of Armed Conflict (LOAC)”.

RPG: Rocket Propelled Grenade

RTB: Return to Base

Shamal: A northwesterly wind blowing over Iraq and the Persian Gulf. A variation of this weather storm is a “Haboob”. Where Shamal means “North”, Haboob means “blasting/drifting”.

Sit-Rep: Situation Report. Basically the status of a mission or area.

SOP: Standard Operating Procedure

Stay Frosty: Stay sharp. Stay attentive to the entire situation. Stay alert and on your toes. You may also hear “keep your head on a swivel”.

T72’s: Its an older generation Soviet Battle Tank. In this story, its part of the Iraqi arsenal.

Victors: In this story, it means vehicles.

Whiskey Tango: White Trash

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