Many television viewers worldwide have been confused by the vast amount of military terminology, slogans, and acronyms being utilized in reporting on the ongoing war against Iraq being waged by the United States and Britain. As a service to these news watchers, the following Iraq War Dictionary has been compiled.
"Shock and Awe"–Title of Iraqi resistance strategy, intended to "shock" invading American and British troops and "awe" them with their unexpected ferocity
Operation Iraqi Liberation–alternative name of US military action, but dropped from consideration because of obvious implication of acronym (OIL)
"Imbedded with"–term used to describe primarily Western reporters traveling with American and British troops; can be used interchangeably with "in bed with"
Decapitation strike–term used to describe how Iraqi civilians are being liberated (refer to very graphic pictures at al-jazeera)
Born Again Ba’ath Fundamentalist–term describing Saddam Hussein’s recent turn to religious rhetoric
Umm Qasr and Al-Nassiriyah: Iraqi Sister Cities of Jenin Refugee Camp in Israeli-occupied West Bank
Friendly Fire: term used to describe strategy employed by coalition troops to liberate Iraqis
NPR–National Pentagon Radio
Patriot Missile–New weapon to be used by Attorney General John Aschroft to enforce Patriot Act against dissenting Americans
WMD–weapons of mass distraction; can be used interchangeably with "US media"
Precision Guided Weapons–used to describe Pentagon’s informal term for "imbedded journalists"
Enemy Combatants: Term used by Iraqi Information Minister Muhammad Al-Sahaf to describe American POWs in attempt to justify their (mis)treatment by comparing them to Johnny Walker Lindh and Guantanamo Bay prisoners, thereby relieving Iraq of need to abide by Geneva Convention
Dud–informal nickname of CNN anchor Paula Zahn; synonym–empty shell
MIA–new acronym for the Arab Leaque
"Between Iraq and a Hard Place"–Term used to describe current position of Coalition troops in the Middle East
CNN–Controlled News Network
Air Jordan–Pentagon’s term for available airspace corridors provided by this kingdom
Food for Oil Program–What American troops are offering starving residents of Basra and southern Iraq: "We’ll give you food if you give us your oil."
Drone–Pentagon code word for CNN anchors Aaron Brown and Wolf Blitzer
Fratricide–military term used for soldiers killing other soldiers; also applicable to official Arab stance on the war on Iraq
AWOL–another acronym for the Arab League (Arabs WithOut Leadership)
Fictitious–(1) Michael Moore’s description of US presidency; (2) In the Middle East, term used to describe "Arab unity"
Sandstorm–obstacle in US forces’ attempt to defeat "sand niggers" in Iraq; alternatively, according to US Central Command, "heinous act of terrorism by God"
MRE–(1) formally, military term used to describe soldiers’ rations (Meals Ready-to-Eat); (2) informally, military term used to describe coalition enemies (Muslims Ready for Extermination)
Al-Fallah (translation-"the peasant")-crude Iraqi anti-aircraft weapon-used to down Apache helicopters; not to be confused with Al-Samud missiles; Al-Fallah was not declared to UN Weapons Inspector Hans Blix by Iraqi leadership)
Irregulars-Pentagon term for constipated recruits
Objective Reporting-term used to describe over-dramatic reporting of flak-jacket and gas-mask-clad, gleeful correspondents when US bombs strike their "objectives"
Regime Change-term describing US policy objective vis-à-vis France
FOX News-US State-run media outlet; official White House and Pentagon mouthpiece
MOAB-term used to describe international reaction to US/British Campaign; Mounting Outrage Against Bombing; also Saddam’s term to describe his new, nuclear-proof hideout-Mother of All Bunkers
Gutter-apparently, a new Persian Gulf nation serving as temporary home to US Central Command
"Kurds N’ Way"-overheard statement by Turkish official regarding situation in Northern Iraq
Operation Dish Out-reported clandestine US military plan to bomb Al-Jazeera’s Baghdad office; modeled after similar operation in Kabul
Colon Bowel-Arabic pronunciation of US Secretary of State’s name, as heard on Al-Jazeera
King George-reported title requested by President Bush upon the occupation-err, liberation-of Iraq; see also Prince Richard (Cheney), Prince Donald (Rumsfeld), and Prince of Darkness
Republican Guard-term used to describe neoconservative hawks Richard Perle, Paul Wolfowitz, and Douglas Feith
Turkish Ba’ath-previously unheard of Turkish pro-Saddam militia
Cruise-Aid-planned fundraising concert to be held by neoconservative war supporters to raise money for more Cruise missiles; not to be confused with "Crusade"
Targets of Opportunity–White House term for US taxpayers, expected to fund massive war effort.
Dr. Riad Z. Abdelkarim of Anaheim, California, writes the monthly "Islam in America" column for the Washington Report on Middle East Affairs. He can be reached at: RiadZuhdi@aol.com
Watch Their Lips
Shock But Not Awe
Winning Hearts and Minds Bush—-Style
The Beautiful Face of America
Buckets of Blood
POWs, Torture and Hypocrisy
The Coup That Didn’t Happen
April Hurley, MD
A Doctor’s Outrage in Baghdad
Reema Abu Hamdieh
The Smell of Death Surrounds Me
Website of the War
Iraq Body Count
Keep CounterPunch Alive:
Make a Tax—-Deductible Donation Today Online!