Vietnam Era Acronyms
Compiled by the Vietnam Era Educational Center
A part of
The New Jersey Vietnam Veterans’ Memorial Foundation

ABC = American Broadcasting Corporation  (TV)
AD = Anno Domini ("In the Year of Our Lord"; see CE)
AFV = American Friends of Vietnam (Quakers)
AID = Agency for International Development
AK-47 = [Soviet-made military rifle]
ARVN = Army of the Republic of [South]  Viet-Nam (Anti-Communist)
ASAP = As soon as possible
AWOL = Absent without leave
AWP = Americans for Winning the Peace

B-52 = [USAF high-altitude (strategic) bomber]
BAR = Browning Automatic Rifle (US military)
BC/BCE = Before Christ or Before Common Era

CADRE = Chicago Area Draft Resistance
CBS = Central Broadcasting System (TV)
CE = Common Era (coincides with AD in numbering years)
CHICOM = Chinese Communist
CI = Counterinsurgency
CIB = Combat Infantry Badge
CINCPAC = Commander-in-Chief, Pacific
CIA = Central Intelligence Agency (formerly the OSS)
CNVA = Committee for Non-Violent Action
CO = Concientious objection/objector;  commanding officer
CORDS = Civilian Operations and Revolutionary  Development Support
COSVN = Central Office of South Vietnam
CP = Communist Party
CREEP = Committee to Re-Elect the President (Nixon)

DEROS = Date eligible for return overseas
DMZ = Demilitarized Zone (dividing North and South Vietnam)
DOD = Department of Defence
DRV = Democratic Republic of [North] Vietnam (Communist)

ECM = Electronic countermeasures
EDC = European Defense Community

FAL = Lao Armed Forces
FDR = Franklin Delano Roosevelt (US President  1933-1945)
FWMAF = Free World Military Assistance Force
FYI = For your information

GI = Government Issue (nickname for an  American soldier)
GVN = Government of [South] Vietnam

ICC = International Control Commission
IRT = Interboro Rapid Transit (NYC)

JCS = Joint Chiefs of Staff
JFK = John Fitzgerald Kennedy (US President  1960-1963)

KIA = Killed in action
KP = Kitchen police

LBJ = Lyndon Baines Johnson (US President  1963-1968); also Long Binh
Jail (US stockade in Vietnam)
LOC = Lines of communication
LSD = Lysergic acid diethylamide (hallucinogen)
LTJG = Lieutenant, Junior Grade (US Navy)
LZ = Landing Zone

M-16 = [US Army standard issue rifle]
MAAG = Military Advisory & Assistance Group
MACV = Military Assistance Command,  Vietnam
MIA = Missing in action
MCC = Mennonite Central Committee (like the Quakers' AFSC, this is a
Peace Church mission active in Vietnam (North and South) since the French
Colonial days and through today.
MLK = Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
MOH = Medal of Honor

NATO = North Atlantic Treaty Organization
NBC = National Broadcasting Corporation (TV)
NCAWRR = National Coalition Against War,  Racism and Repression
NCO = Non-Commisioned Officer
NLF = National Liberation Front (South Vietnamese Communist
organization; we called them the Viet Cong, or VC)
NSC = [US] National Security Council
NVA = North Vietnamese Army (see PAVN)
NVN = North Viet-Nam (Communist)
NYC = New York City

OCI = Office of Current Intelligence
OSS = Office of Strategic Services (now the CIA)

PAVN = People’s Army of [North] Viet-Nam  (we called them the NVA)
PC = Press conference [later, politically correct]
PLAF = People’s Liberation Armed Forces (South Vietnamese Communist
forces, we called them the Viet Cong, or VC)
POW = Prisoner of war
PRG = Provisional Revolutionary Government
PTSD = Post Trauma Stress Disorder

QT = Quiet (“on the QT” = “in secret”)

R&R = Rest and recreation
RFK = Robert F. Kennedy
RLAF = Royal Laotian Air Force
RN (or RMN) = Richard Milhouse Nixon (US  President 1968-1974)
ROTC = Reserve Officer Training Corps
ROK = Republic of [South] Korea
RTA = Royal Thai Army
RVN = Republic of [South] Viet-Nam (anti-Communist)
RVNAF = Republic of [South] Viet-Nam Air Force

SAC = Strategic Air Command
SAM = Surface-to-air missle
SDS = Students for a Democratic Society
SNCC = Student Non-violent Coordinating Committee
SRV = Socialist Republic of [reunified] Vietnam (Vietnam today)
STDW = Stop the Draft Week
SVN = South Viet-Nam

T-28 = US fighter-bomber airplane (prop driven)
TAOR = Tactical area of responsibility

UN = United Nations
US = United States
USA = United States of America;  US Army
USAF = United States Air Force
USCG = United States Coast Guard
USG = United States Government
USMC = United States Marine Corps
USN = United States Navy
USNG = United States National Guard
USO = United Service Organizations
USS = United States Ship
USSR = Union of Soviet Socialist Republics

VA = Veterans Administration
VC = Viet Cong a.k.a. Victor Charlie, or just Charlie (see NLF and PLAF)

VFW = Veterans of Foreign Wars
VFP = Veterans for Peace (WWII and Korean War veterans during the
Vietnam Era)
VIP = Very important person
VM = Viet Minh (Vietnamese nationalist (and Communist) force that
defeated the French in 1954 at Dien Bien Phu)
VMC = Vietnam Moratorium Committee
VP = Vice President
VVA = Vietnam Veterans of America
VVAW = Vietnam Veterans Against the War
VVM = Vietnam Veterans Memorial (in  Washington, DC)

WHAM = Win the hearts and minds
WIA/WIC = Wounded in Action / Wounded in Combat (warrants the Purple
Heart Medal)
WWI = World War I (1914-1918)
WWII = World War II (1939-1945)

To return to '60's and other relevant links page click here.
Or use your Back button to return to where you were.