Journalists have been embedding — or traveling alongside — military service members for decades in order to get the best coverage of their country’s wars. But being in the midst of a war isn’t easy — especially if you don’t understand the unique lingo used in the military. From MREs (meal ready to eat) to NFGs (non-functional gear) and IEDs (improvised explosive device) to EODs (explosive ordnance disposal), acronyms and slang terms abound. If you want to survive amidst the troops, you need to learn it all before you attempt to transcribe your interviews. Could you handle a tour of duty? Take our military lingo quiz to find out if you need a translator or could make it on your own! Then check out our source list below to learn more about this unique language.
Want to learn more so you, too, can speak like a service member? Check out our sources:
The definitive glossary of modern US military slang
10 Phrases That Make No Sense Outside Of The Army
Navy Fighter Pilots’ Lingo
7 Phrases You’ll Want To Keep Using After The Military
Jennifer Peters is former content manager of the News Media Alliance.