15 August 2011

A New Army Vocabulary?

It would be nice if the effort to simplify terms and eliminate TLAs* actually pays off. But let's not get our hopes up too high, eh?

Hollywood might poke fun at the Army’s liberal use of acronyms and abbreviations, perhaps with good reason: There are nearly 1,100 acronyms and approximately 2,000 operational terms in the Field Manual 1-02, the Army and Marine Corps’ manual of operational terms and graphics.

A team of Army terminologists is working to change that.

Carlos Soto, a terminologist with the Fort Leavenworth, Kan.-based Combined Arms Doctrine Directorate Joint Multinational Doctrine Division, said the philosophy of his group is simple: Because soldiers were taught English before joining the Army, why try to teach them a new language?

“There is no reason for the U.S. Army to create a word if the English language suffices,” he said.

One of the chief culprits is the liberal use of acronyms to shorten or simplify military terms. Only they’re not always shorter and far too often they don’t simplify anything. “Acronyms are fun to create, but you sit there during a briefing, and after the 20th acronym [that] you don’t understand, the briefing becomes useless,” said Dave Turek, chief of the Joint and Multinational Doctrine Division Combined Arms Doctrine and co-author of FM 1-02.

* Three-Letter Acronyms

By: Brant

1 comment:

Matt Purvis said...

I'll believe it when I see it happen.