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Jarhead (Marine Corps) Jargon

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Some United States Marine Corps Nicknames or Terms:
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On one or two occasions I was overheard discussing Marine Corps lore with other boots, and corrected by one or more of the old salts.

In particular, I was told that the term Jarhead originated in the Corps back in the days when mules were still used. As anyone who has ever watched an old western movie knows, mules were often referred to as Jughead. Over time, certain stubborn or hard to deal with Marines were also called Jarheads. While we're at it here, here's some more information--food for thought--on the same topic.

This one was posted to one of the GyG messageboards, and at least it does provide a reference for its remarks. Strong, hearty, and persevering, the mule is truly an appropriate symbol for the Corps of Cadets. Jarhead and jughead eventually merged to become slang synonyms for marine. In addition to the above ideas, here are a few more: Perhaps from the shape of the hat the Marines once wore.

American Heritage Dictionary of English A slang term used by sailors as early as World War II to refer to members of the Marine Corps, drawing the term from the resemblance of the Marine dress blues uniform, with its high collar, to a Mason jar which at the time was made from blue glass.

Army origin, some say Marines. The term Grunt was extant in the early s Marine Corps. I had heard a few non Marines refer to Marines in the line companies as "grunts.

I had only been in the Corps since , and to the best of my recollection, this was the first times I had noticed the use of the term.

Later, in , most of the "draftees," selective service personnel had all rotated home to be discharged after their two years sercice--there had been a lot of them. As a result of this my unit was seriously undermanned, and the regimental adjutant provided us one warm body in the form of a Marine PFC from 2d Bn, 3d Marines in North Camp Fuji--some would say he was shanghaied. Swofford learns from Sykes that Troy concealed his criminal record when enlisting and will be discharged when the unit returns home.

Troy becomes distant from his friends. Knowing that Troy will not be allowed to reenlist, the Marines attack him with a red-hot USMC branding iron, marking him as one of their own. Following an accidental air attack from friendly forces, the Marines advance through the desert, facing no enemies on the ground. The Marines march through the Highway of Death , strewn with the burnt vehicles and charred bodies of retreating Iraqi soldiers, the aftermath of a bombing campaign.

The Marines later catch sight of distant burning oil wells , ignited only moments before by retreating Iraqis, and they attempt to dig sleeping holes as a rain of crude oil falls from the sky. Before they can finish, Sykes orders the squad to move upwind.

The denouement of the movie occurs when Swofford and Troy are finally given a sniping mission. Lieutenant Colonel Kazinski, their battalion commander, orders them to kill at least one of two high-ranking Iraqi Republican Guard officers at a nearby airfield. At the last second before Swofford takes the shot, Major Lincoln interrupts them to call in an air strike. Swofford and Troy protest, but are overruled and look on in disappointment as airplanes destroy the Iraqi airfield.

During a monologue, Swofford realizes that all of his training and effort to achieve the elite status as a marine sniper is meaningless in modern warfare; it was an arduous and glorious path that led nowhere. It is time to start anew. After returning home the Marines parade through a town in a jovial celebration of victory. Swofford returns home to his family and girlfriend but discovers she has a new boyfriend.

Fowler is seen with a prostitute in a bar, Kruger in a corporate boardroom, Escobar as a supermarket employee, Cortez as a father of three, and Sykes continuing his service as a first sergeant in the Iraq War. Later, Swofford learns of Troy's death during a surprise visit from Fergus.

He attends his funeral, reunites with some of his old friends and afterwards reminisces about the effects of the war. Jarhead isn't overtly political, yet by evoking the almost surreal futility of men whose lust for victory through action is dashed, at every turn, by the tactics, terrain, and morality of the war they're in, it sets up a powerfully resonant echo of the one we're in today. Scott felt that the film was "full of intensity with almost no real visceral impact", and called it "a minor movie about a minor war, and a film that feels, at the moment, remarkably irrelevant".

The German Army coined this term of respect for U. Marines during World War I. In the summer of the German Army was driving toward Paris. The French Army was in full retreat. In a desperate effort to save Paris, the newly arrived U. Marines were thrown into the breach. In June , in bitter fighting lasting for weeks, Marines repeatedly repulsed the Germans in Belleau Wood. The German drive toward Paris sputtered, fizzled, and died.

Then the Marines attacked and swept the Germans back out of Belleau Wood. Paris had been saved. The tide of war had turned.

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The term "jarhead" comes from the shape of the Old Corps covers (hats) that were worn by Marines. The poster is assuming that it is derrogatory, but in fact Marines call each other jarhead as a matter of course.

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May 27,  · In the s, the term jarhead was well established, while the term "high and tight" did not yet exist. Marines who chose to trim their hair closely on the sides were said to have "white sidewalls." Photos of Marines in the World War II era show haircuts that are even Resolved.

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Recent Examples of jarhead from the Web When jarhead coders wrote their own version of Doom II, putting players in landscapes that resembled the Iraqi desert and other likely theaters of battle, Vaughn played it day and night. Instead of being insulted, the Marines loved it. The term became common by World War I and has been extensively used since that time. Jarhead: For roughly 50 years, sailors had little luck in their effort to insult Marines by calling them Gyrenes. So, during World War .

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JARHEAD Regarding the term Jarhead, all are well aware of the explanations for the origins for this name for Marines--that it found its origins in the high, dress blues, collar of the Marine uniform, that it refers to the similarity to a Mason jar, the "high and tight" haircut of Marines, and that the term was first used for Marines by members of the U.S. Navy, etc. The screenplay is by Bill Broyles, the writer responsible for Jarhead, Cast Away, and Apollo