Challenge coin

A challenge coin may be a small coin or medallion, bearing an organization’s insignia or emblem and carried by the organization’s members. Traditionally, they might be given to prove membership when challenged and to enhance morale. In addition, they are also collected by service members and law enforcement personnel. Modern challenge coins are made in a variety of sizes and are often made using popular culture references to include superheroes and other well known characters in a way that creates a parody.[1] Historically, challenge coins were presented by unit commanders in recognition of special achievement by a member of the unit. They are also exchanged in recognition of visits to an organization.[2] Modern day challenge coins feature popular culture attributes.[3]

Airmans Coin
Original USAF Airman's coin.
USMCBDayCoinHeads
The front of a U.S. Marine Corps birthday ball medallion.
Embleholics Supply Corps Custom Challenge Coin Front Side
Navy Supply Corps challenge coin (front).
Embleholics Supply Corps Custom Challenge Coin Back Side
Navy Supply Corps challenge coin (reverse).

Origins

There are several stories detailing the origins of the challenge coin.

The Roman Empire rewarded soldiers by presenting them with coins to recognize their achievements.[4]

Challenge coins were also known as "Portrait Medals" during the Renaissance, and were often used to commemorate specific events involving royalty, nobility, or other types of well-to-do individuals. The medals would be given as gifts or awards, and people also exchanged them with friends and associates. The most common format was for one side to depict the patron while the other showed something that represented that individual's family, house, lineage, and/or seal.[5]

According to the most common story, challenge coins originated during World War I.[6][7] Before the entry of the United States into the war in 1917 American volunteers from all parts of the country filled the newly formed flying squadrons. Some were wealthy scions attending colleges such as Yale and Harvard who quit in mid-term to join the war.[8][9][10]

In one squadron, a wealthy lieutenant ordered medallions struck in solid bronze and presented them to his unit. One young pilot placed the medallion in a small leather pouch that he wore about his neck. Shortly after acquiring the medallion, the pilot's aircraft was severely damaged by ground fire. He was forced to land behind enemy lines and was immediately captured by a German patrol.[11] In order to discourage his escape, the Germans took all of his personal identification except for the small leather pouch around his neck. In the meantime, he was taken to a small French town near the front. Taking advantage of a bombardment that night, he escaped. However, he was without personal identification. He succeeded in avoiding German patrols by donning civilian attire and reached the front lines. With great difficulty, he crossed no-man's land. Eventually, he stumbled onto a French outpost. Saboteurs had plagued the French in the sector. They sometimes masqueraded as civilians and wore civilian clothes. Not recognizing the young pilot's American accent, the French thought him to be a saboteur and made ready to execute him. He had no identification to prove his allegiance, but he did have his leather pouch containing the medallion. He showed the medallion to his would-be executioners and one of his French captors recognized the squadron insignia on the medallion. They delayed his execution long enough for him to confirm his identity. Instead of shooting him they gave him a bottle of wine.[4][8][9][12][10]

Back at his squadron, it became tradition to ensure that all members carried their medallion or coin at all times.[4] This was accomplished through challenge in the following manner: a challenger would ask to see the medallion, if the challenged could not produce a medallion, they were required to buy a drink of choice for the member who challenged them. If the challenged member produced a medallion, then the challenging member was required to pay for the drink. This tradition continued throughout the war and for many years after the war while surviving members of the squadron were still alive.[9][12][10]

According to another story, challenge coins date back to World War II and were first used by Office of Strategic Service personnel who were deployed in Nazi held France. Similarly, Jim Harrington proposed a Jolly sixpence club amongst the junior officers of the 107th Infantry.[4] The coins were simply a local coin used as a "bona fides" during a personal meeting to help verify a person's identity. There would be specific aspects such as type of coin, date of the coin, etc. that were examined by each party. This helped prevent infiltration into the meeting by a spy who would have to have advance knowledge of the meeting time and place as well as what coin was to be presented, amongst other signals, as bona fides.

While a number of legends place the advent of challenge coins in the post-Korean Conflict era (some as late as the Vietnam War), or even later, Colonel William "Buffalo Bill" Quinn had coins made for those who served in his 17th Infantry Regiment during 1950 and 1951.

Colonel Verne Green, commander of the 10th Special Forces Group-A, embraced the idea. He had a special coin struck with the unit's badge and motto in 1969. Until the 1980s, his unit was the only unit with an active challenge coin tradition.[13][14][15]

There is another story about an American soldier scheduled to rendezvous with Philippine guerrillas during WWII. As the story goes, he carried a Philippine solid silver coin that was stamped on one side with the unit insignia. The coin was used to verify, to the guerrillas, that the soldier was their valid contact for the mission against the Japanese.

Belgian Air Component Coins
Two coins issued by various units of the Belgian Air Component

The challenge coin tradition has spread to other military units, in all branches of service, and even to non-military organizations as well as the United States Congress, which produces challenge coins for members of Congress to give to constituents. Today, challenge coins are given to members upon joining an organization, as an award to improve morale, and sold to commemorate special occasions or as fundraisers. In the Air Force, military training instructors award an airman's coin to new enlisted personnel upon completion of their United States Air Force Basic Military Training and to new officers upon completion of the Air Force Officer Training School.[12][16]

U.S. presidents

Challenge coins issued by presidents date back to the late 1990s. Separately, the White House Communication Agency (WHCA) has issued challenge coins for foreign heads and military during Presidential visits. In May 2018, controversy arose when WHCA released a coin featuring President Donald Trump and North Korean head Kim Jong-un ahead of peace talks scheduled for June 2018 in Singapore.[17][18]

President Bill Clinton displayed several racks of challenge coins, which had been given to him by U.S. service members, on the credenza behind his Oval Office desks. These coins are currently on display at the Clinton Library. The challenge coins appear in the background of his official portrait, now hanging in the White House.

President George W. Bush received a challenge coin from a Marine combat patrol unit during his short but unexpected visit to Al Asad Airbase in Anbar province, Iraq, 3 September 2007.[19]

President Barack Obama, in addition to handing challenge coins to U.S. service members, would leave coins on the memorial graves of dead soldiers. Not all of his coin exchanges went smoothly; in 2012 he attempted to hand it off to Sergeant Kristie Ness who dropped it. Obama picked it up, afterwards they both laughed it off.[20]

President Donald Trump's coin broke with tradition, omitting the presidential seal, the motto "E pluribus unum" and the thirteen arrows representing the thirteen original states. His campaign slogan "Make America Great Again" appears on both sides. It features a banner at the bottom, which also serves as a base allowing the coin to stand upright.[21][22]

Challenging

The tradition of a challenge is the most common way to ensure that members are carrying their unit's coin. The rules of a challenge are not always formalized for a unit, and may vary between organizations. The challenge only applies to those members that have been given a coin formally by their unit. This may lead to some controversy when challenges are initiated between members of different organizations and is not recommended. The tradition of the coin challenge is meant to be a source of morale in a unit, and forcing the challenge can cause a reverse effect. The act of challenging is called a "Coin Check" and is usually loudly announced.[12][14][23]

The challenge, which can be made at any time, begins with the challenger drawing his/her coin, and slapping or placing the coin on the table or bar. In noisy environments, continuously rapping the challenge coin on a surface may initiate the challenge. (Accidentally dropping a challenge coin is considered to be a deliberate challenge to all present.) Everyone being challenged must immediately produce the coin for their organization and anyone failing to do so must buy a round of drinks for the challenger and everyone else who has their challenge coin. However, should everyone challenged be able to produce their coin, the challenger must buy a round of drinks for the group.[12][13][14]

While most holders of challenge coins usually carry them in their pockets or in some other readily accessible place on their persons, most versions of the rules permit a challenged person "a step and a reach" or if an individual has an extra coin to pass it off to the person closest to them. Coins on belt buckles or key chains are not acceptable for meeting a challenge. However, a coin worn around the neck is acceptable for meeting a coin challenge.[13][14][23]

Variants of the rules include, but are not limited to, the following: If someone is able to steal a challenge coin, everyone in the group must buy a drink for that person. During a challenge, everyone in the group must buy a drink for the holder of the highest-ranking coin. A coins rank is determined by the rank of the giver of the challenge coin. For example, a coin presented by an Admiral would outrank a coin presented by a Vice Admiral, while both would outrank a coin presented by a Captain. Traditionally, the presentation of a coin is passed during a handshake. Some units provide strict time limits to respond to a challenge.

Traditionally, rules of a challenge include a prohibition against defacing the coin, especially if it makes it easier to carry at all times. If the challenge coin is attached to a belt buckle or key ring, or has had a hole drilled in it to attach to a lanyard, it no longer qualifies as a challenge coin.[14][24]

Appearance

There are many finishes available—from a simple pewter to 24K gold. While there are only a few base metals, the patina (finish) can range from gold, silver, or nickel to brass, copper, or bronze - plus the antiqued variations. Soft or hard enamel or a printed inset with an epoxy coating may add color (the epoxies are often more resilient and scratch resistant than the metal surfaces).[25]

Cost

Challenge coins are moderately inexpensive to design and produce. There are two basic processes by which to manufacture: zinc-alloy castings or die struck bronze.

Zinc alloy castings offer the advantage of low cost. Zinc casting also allows more flexibility in design like cutouts found on spinner coins or bottle opener coins.[26] While a die struck bronze or brass coin is more expensive, the result renders a far superior product (numismatic quality).

As of 2010, coins manufactured in China and South Korea typically cost between US$2.50 to US$7.00 per coin, depending on production process and complexity of design, laser engraving, enamels, voids, etc. The dies must be sculpted by an artist and can range in cost from US$50 to US$300, depending on complexity. The cost of domestic manufacture can be many times this amount.

In order to be competitive, most North American companies offering challenge coins rely on having the product manufactured offshore. Many challenge coins are fabricated in South Korea, as the connection to the US military bases there is strong, and costs are cheaper than those made in the US.

Uses

Besides using coins for challenging, they are also used as rewards or awards for outstanding service or performance of duty. As such, they are used as a tool to build morale.[12][23] Military officials occasionally give them to non-military personnel for outstanding service or rewards, like the case of student athletes at Northeastern University.[27]

In the context as they are used by the modern U.S. military, the tradition probably began among special forces units during the Vietnam War. The tradition spread through the Airborne community, and by the early 1980s also into the 75th Ranger Regiment. As officers were reassigned as their careers progressed, they carried with them the tradition of awarding a unit coin for acts that were worthy of recognition but yet lacked enough merit to submit the soldiers act for an official medal.

One widely known challenge coin in the United States Air Force was the "Bull Dog" challenge coin that was exclusive to B-52 enlisted tail gunners. Since the B-52 gunner position was phased out in 1991, this famous challenge coin has become rarer.

This coin was presented to gunners upon graduation from their Air Force technical training and their entry into the "Gunners Association". In the earlier days of bombers, a bean or a nugget was used. The coin represents the attributes of strength and courage as reflected in the Bulldog, the gunner's official mascot. The coin was also given to certain "honorary gunners", usually commanders and leaders who portrayed the spirit of the bulldog.

Some collectors buy them for their numismatic value.

Coins given as awards for accomplishments are normally given to the recipient during a handshake, passing from the right hand of the giver to the right hand of the awardee. It is also normal for the giver to offer a brief explanation of the reason for awarding the coin.

Outside the military

Challenge coins are also exchanged outside the military. NASCAR,[28] the NFL, cadets of the Civil Air Patrol,[29] Eagle Scouts and World Series of Poker all have their own challenge coins.[30] They are also becoming popular with police departments, fire departments and fraternal organizations. In 2007, the Utah Symphony and Opera gave challenge coins to all of its staff and musicians, making it the first symphony organization in America to do so. Franklin Public School in Ontario has a coin that is given to graduates, featuring its mascot 'Frankie'.[31] Many non-profits, especially those with connections to the military, give challenge coins to donors to acknowledge their support of the organization.[32][33] The FBI's Crisis Response unit was the first unit in the FBI to issue coins to unit members in late 1980's.

National Association of Buffalo Soldiers and Troopers Motorcycle Club

Challengecoin
Members of the National Association of Buffalo Soldiers and Troopers Motorcycle Club must earn their challenge coin.

Another organization in which challenge coins have gained popularity is the "National Association of Buffalo Soldiers and Troopers Motorcycle Club" (NABSTMC), which has over 85 chapters totaling over 2,000 members. The coin is 1.75 inches (44 mm) in diameter, minted in solid brass with an antique finish. The front of the coin bears the NABSTMC logo. Also depicted is the year the club was established, which was 1999. The back of the coin proudly displays the "cavalry charge" with the motto of the 9th and 10th cavalry buffalo soldiers: "we can, we will" and "ready forward". The coin must be earned by the members and can only be presented by a national officer or chapter president for a noteworthy accomplishment.[30]

Harley Owners Group

In 2009, the Harley Owners Group (HOG) created and made available its own challenge coin to Harley-Davidson motorcycle owners through the HOG members only website, stating: "Those who ride Harley-Davidson motorcycles share a bond in much the same way as those who have served their country with pride. Carrying a H.O.G. National Challenge Coin in your pocket, on your bike or off, is a meaningful way to show your pride of Harley-Davidson ownership—while also paying tribute to those who serve." The HOG National Challenge coin, measures 1.75 inches (44 mm) in diameter and is minted in US from solid brass alloy with an antique finish. The HOG eagle logo is stamped on the coin. The Harley-Davidson bar and shield logo encircled with the words "the official riding club of Harley-Davidson" is stamped on the back.[34]

Science

In the International Genetically Engineered Machine competition (iGEM), participants that won the 'Grand Prize' are given a challenge coin from 2016 on (see figure on the right).

Varian Medical Systems, a medical device manufacturer, awards challenge coins for notable accomplishments by its service personnel. A significant number of Varian's employees have military backgrounds, where many of them learn the electronics and mechanical skills needed to support Varian equipment.

Media

In his audio commentary for the DVD release of Iron Man 2, film director Jon Favreau notes that he had Iron Man 2 challenge coins made to distribute to United States Air Force personnel as a gesture of thanks for their cooperation while the production (and its predecessor, Iron Man) filmed on location at Edwards Air Force Base.[35]

Bill Prady, executive producer of The Big Bang Theory, gave the Big Bang Theory "executive producer's challenge coin" to the crew of the last space shuttle.[36]

On the "Rockets" episode of Lock N' Load with R. Lee Ermey, R. Lee (Gunny) Ermey presents a challenge coin to Second Lieutenant Carr as a reward for being the "top gun" in his class with the Javelin Portable Rocket Launching System.[30]

Members of the American Radio Relay League who are volunteer examiners may carry the VEC (volunteer examiner coordinator) challenge coin. These members are responsible for administering Federal Communications Commission sanctioned examinations that allow successful applicants to qualify as amateur radio operators in the three different license categories of: technician, general, and amateur extra.[37]

The crew of Breaking Bad were given challenge coins designed by show creator Vince Gilligan for each new season. Another challenge coin was also included in the Blu-ray set of the entire series of the show.[38]

Video game companies like Treyarch gave these coins with certain packages for the release of Black Ops 2.[39]

The crowdfunded movie Lazer Team gave challenge coins to its backers as an optional perk of funding the movie.[40]

Canada

Coin CCMRC LONGUEUIL
the challenge coin for Royal Canadian Sea Cadets Longueuil.

One of the first appearance of a challenge coin within the Canadian Forces was that of the Canadian Airborne Regiment. Although conceptualized in the early 1970s, it was not officially adopted until the regiment returned from Cyprus in 1974.[41]

Recognized as an "Americanism", the widespread use of challenge coins is new to the Canadian Forces (CF) and was introduced by General Rick Hillier as the Canadian Army began to work more closely with the US military. While many regiments and military establishments purchase them as 'challenge coins', most branches and schools within the CF use them for presentation purposes.

The first RCAF coin belonged to 427 Squadron. Back in the Second World War, 427 and the film studios Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer (MGM) shared the lion as their respective symbol. During a ceremony held on 27 May 1943, a bronze statuette of a lion was presented to the squadron as were MGM's coins for the squadron members.[42] These coins granted free access to the MGM's theaters in Britain and were popular with aircrew and ground crew alike. In 1982, the custom was reintroduced by Lieutenant-Colonel Hugh Cunnigham, then the squadron commanding officer; it has since expanded widely within the RCAF tactical aviation community.

Every new officer cadet at the Royal Military College of Canada in Kingston, Ontario, is issued a challenge coin upon completion of First-Year Orientation Period. The coin is engraved with the name of the college in French and English surrounding the college's coat of arms on the obverse. The cadet's college number and the Memorial Arch is on the reverse surrounded by the motto in both languages.

Members of the Corps of Royal Canadian Electrical and Mechanical Engineers Fund are issued challenge coins with the current RCEME badge and the member's branch fund membership number on the obverse side, and the original pre-unification RCEME badge and branch motto on the reverse side. Usually, these are issued to craftsmen at the Canadian Forces School of Electrical and Mechanical Engineering, in Borden, Ontario, where branch fund membership is first offered.

The coin from Commander Canadian Special Operations Forces Command is a dull colour, but distinct by its pierced sections.

Many of the CF training centres and staff colleges have a distinct coin—some available for the students to purchase, others available only by presentation by the establishment or the commandant for exemplary achievement while attending the facility. General Walter Natynczyk, when he was chief of the Defence Staff, and the Canadian Forces Chief Warrant Officer often present their personalized coins to deserving soldiers.

Police, corrections, security and fire departments have embraced the concept and have found coins to be an excellent means of team building and creating a sense of brotherhood or belonging. Many feature a patron saint, badge or representative equipment.

Switzerland

The challenge coin tradition was introduced into the Swiss Armed Forces by American officers on training missions and other assignments for the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, of which Switzerland is a member. Coins are not issued, but rather ordered and paid for by Swiss officers of various branches within the Army.

WOFF-AF coin
Challenge coin of the Warrant Officer of the Air Force, Royal Australian Air Force; Specifically, WOFF-AF Mark Pentreath (7th WOFF-AF).

Australia and New Zealand

Coins have come into use by various Australian and New Zealand political leaders, senior officers and NCOs, under the influence of presentations from American personnel.[15] Several hundred types of New Zealand challenge coins have been produced in recent decades.[43]

Britain

Exchange officers and British military visitors to US units and formations in recent decades have often been presented with challenge coins. The British Army has had a challenge coin for recruiting purposes since the mid-2000s and examples exist for e.g. the Special Air Service and Royal Engineer units. British military medical units also discovered the tradition while working with American units in Iraq and Afghanistan. The Department of Military Anesthesia and Critical Care has been issuing a coin since 2006.[7]

References

  1. ^ https://www.lawenforcementtoday.com/challenge-coins-pop-art-appropriation-alive-well/
  2. ^ "Challenge Coin". GlobalSecurity.org. Retrieved 10 March 2008. Commanders use specially minted military coins to improve morale, foster unit esprit de corps and honor service members for their hard work. ... In one squadron, a wealthy lieutenant ordered medallions struck in solid bronze and presented them to his unit.
  3. ^ https://www.lawenforcementtoday.com/challenge-coins-pop-art-appropriation-alive-well/
  4. ^ a b c d Myers, William J. (April 2007). "Meet the Challenge". The Numismatist: 63.
  5. ^ Wolfe, Alexandra (6 May 2017). "Portable Portraits". The Wall Street Journal: C12.
  6. ^ Carter, Chris (November 2013). "BACCN Military Region Challenge Coin". Nursing in Critical Care. British Association of Critical Care Nurses. 18 (6): 321. doi:10.1111/nicc.12058_8.
  7. ^ a b Mahoney, PF (2010). "The DMACC Coins". Journal of the Royal Army Medical Corps. 156: S412. doi:10.1136/jramc-156-04s-25.
  8. ^ a b Pike, John (4 March 2005). "History of the Challenge Coin". Globalsecurity.org. Retrieved 13 August 2014.
  9. ^ a b c Knowlen, Charles (May 2011). "History of the Challenge Coin" (PDF). Bangor International Airport. Archived from the original (PDF) on 14 August 2014. Retrieved 15 December 2014.
  10. ^ a b c "The Challenge Coin Tradition: Do You Know How It Started? - DoDLive". www.dodlive.mil.
  11. ^ "History of Custom Challenge Coins". Embleholics. Retrieved 5 May 2015.
  12. ^ a b c d e f Snyder, Jonathan (5 March 2007). "Challenge Coins a Trademark Tradition for American Military". Pacific Air Force, United States Air Force. Archived from the original on 12 December 2008. Retrieved 13 May 2007.
  13. ^ a b c Myers, William J. (April 2007). "Meet the Challenge". The Numismatist: 64.
  14. ^ a b c d e "Special Forces Coin Rules and History". Sfalx.com. Archived from the original on 31 July 2014. Retrieved 13 August 2014.
  15. ^ a b Christian, Davenport (n.d.). "Power Players Flip for 'Challenge Coins'". Regional Business News. The Washington Post – via EBSCOhost.
  16. ^ 737th Training Group. "Basic Military Training" (PDF). Lackland Air Force Base. p. 3. Archived from the original (PDF) on 14 August 2014. Retrieved 15 December 2014.
  17. ^ "U.S. Mints Commemorative Coin for Trump-Kim Summit". Time. Retrieved 24 May 2018.
  18. ^ "White House releases unexpectedly romantic coin featuring Trump and Kim Jong Un". VICE News. Retrieved 24 May 2018.
  19. ^ https://news.yahoo.com/photo/070903/481/4ebf5940e5794708b84ac658533001b4. Retrieved 4 September 2007. Missing or empty |title= (help)
  20. ^ Staff, AOL. "Obama caught in photos handing servicemen challenge coins during 'secret handshake'". AOL.com. Retrieved 24 May 2018.
  21. ^ Nakamura, David (22 December 2017). "s It's 'very gold': The presidential coin undergoes a Trumpian makeover". Washington Post. Retrieved 22 December 2017.
  22. ^ Garcia, Sandra E. (23 December 2017). "Trump Gives Presidential Challenge Coin a Makeover, and It Shows". The New York Times. Retrieved 23 December 2017.
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  27. ^ "Honoring Leadership". Northeastern Voice. Northeastern University. 20 (8): 3. 29 February 2008.
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  31. ^ Cummings, Melanie (8 July 2008). "People in Coins". Canadian Coin News. p. 15.
  32. ^ r4esh (25 April 2013). "Challenge Coins for Non-Profit Fundraising". D&R Military Specialties. Retrieved 13 August 2014.
  33. ^ "Non-Profit Challenge Coins". Challenge Coins Plus. 13 March 2012. Retrieved 13 August 2014.
  34. ^ "Harley Owners Group Official Challenge Coins". Ultimate MotorCycling Magazine. 1 December 2009. Retrieved 13 August 2014.
  35. ^ "Collider Goes to the Set of IRON MAN 2 - Read a Preview - Plus Pictures of the IM2 Challenge Coin". Collider.com. Retrieved 13 March 2015.
  36. ^ "STS-135 Crew's Visit to 'The Big Bang Theory'". collectSPACE: Messages. Retrieved 3 June 2013.
  37. ^ "Pins, Patches, & Supplies: Volunteer Examiner Challenge Coin". ARRL. Retrieved 13 August 2014.
  38. ^ "The 'Breaking Bad' Complete Series Set Looks Awesome". The Huffington Pos. 9 September 2013. Retrieved 13 August 2014.
  39. ^ MacManus, Christopher (29 August 2012). "Treyarch Teases 'Call of Duty: Black Ops 2' Collector's Editions". CNET. Retrieved 13 August 2014.
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  42. ^ "Original MGM Lion Coin". 427 Squadron Association.
  43. ^ "NEW BOOK: NEW ZEALAND CHALLENGE COINS: A CATALOGUE".

Further reading

External links

Airman's coin

The Airman's coin is a challenge coin that is awarded to United States Air Force enlisted Airmen upon completion of Basic Military Training at Lackland AFB, Texas. After the award of the coin the individual is no longer referred to as "trainee," but as "Airman," marking the successful completion of the first phase of training in becoming a United States Air Force Airman.

Canadian National Police Service

The Canadian National Police Service (commonly referred to as the CN Police) is a private railroad police force protecting the property, personnel, and rail infrastructure of the Canadian National Railway in Canada and the United States.

Challenge

Challenge may refer to:

Voter challenging or caging, a method of challenging the registration status of voters

Euphemism for disability

Peremptory challenge, a dismissal of potential jurors from jury duty

Challenge (rhetoric), a dare or a motivational impetus to action

DVDs to the Desert

DVDs to the Desert is a charity founded on July 25, 2007 by Jesse L. Medford, the President of Challenge Coin Association based in Concord, North Carolina.

The purpose of DVDs to the Desert is to donate movies to the United States service members deployed overseas.

Duels (video game)

Duels was a free player vs. player browser game. A player's avatar could either fight another player controlled avatar, or an NPC to gain experience points, gold, and tokens. Tokens were used to purchase packs containing scrolls, armor, and weapons. Gold was used to purchase armor, weapons, pets, and, in Duels 2.0, actions. Players were given the option to issue challenges to each other. When a player accepted a challenge, the avatars fought it out in real time, but without player interaction. As such, players did not need to be logged in to engage in battle. Duels offered paid memberships called Nobles or Patrons with many useful perk choices, and non-member players could purchase Challenge Coins which gave access to some of these more advanced menu choices for playing, but the game was not pay to play.

Excellence in Armor

Excellence in Armor (EIA) is a program of the United States Army that awards outstanding Armor and Cavalry Soldiers whose performance is routinely above the standard and demonstrate superior leadership potential. The EIA was initially proposed in May 1984 and implemented in October 1987. The program rewards outstanding armor and cavalry Soldiers with a Certificate of Achievement, a challenge coin from the U.S. Army's Chief of Armor, awarding of the personnel development skill identifier (PDSI) “E4J,” and will set the Soldier apart from their peers during promotion boards.According to U.S. Army Armor School, the EIA program identifies outstanding Armor Branch Soldiers in the ranks of Private (E-1/OR-1) through Sergeant (E-5/OR-5) who have demonstrated performance and leadership potential, either in One Station Unit Training (OSUT) or in Armor and Cavalry units. EIA also applies to Armor and Cavalry Soldiers serving in non-Armor units in the Regular Army, Army Reserve, and Army National Guard. One of the established goals of the program is to "increase combat readiness across Armor and Cavalry units through identification and promotion of highly qualified highly motivated Armor and Cavalry Soldiers and non-commissioned officers.

Geocoin

A geocoin is a metal or wooden token minted in similar fashion to a medallion, token coin, military challenge coin or wooden nickel, for use in geocaching, specifically as form of a calling card. The first geocoins were developed by Jon Stanley (aka moun10bike) as a signature item to be placed in caches.Many of these are made to be trackable on various websites to be able to show the movement around the world and visitors to be able to leave comments when they find the coin. Each coin has a unique tracking ID, which can also be used when logging it to a designated website.

A geocoin typically has a diameter of 1.5 inches (38 mm) to 2 inches (51 mm) and a thickness between 0.098 inches (2.5 mm) and 0.16 inches (4 mm). Coins with the size of 1 inch (25 mm) are called microcoins, because they fit into microcaches (e.g. film canister). The smallest geocoins with a diameter of 0.5 inches (13 mm) are called nanocoins, and have been sold since 2009. If the diameter is larger than 3 inches (76 mm) the geocoin is called macrocoin, and contains the saying of "that's not a coin it's an anchor".

Insignia of Chaplain Schools in the US Military

In addition to the three official Chaplain Corps seals for the army, navy, and air force, chaplaincies also have special seals and emblems for special schools and organizations for their chaplains, as well as a shared emblem for the "Armed Forces Chaplaincy Center" (AFCC), Fort Jackson, Columbia, South Carolina, where chaplains from all branches of the military receive their training. The original AFCC emblem has three symbols traditionally associated with learning and wisdom—a lamp, a torch and a book. A second emblem was developed by the Commandants and Commanding Officer of the three schools, in part so that it could be used on the reverse side of a two-sided AFCC challenge coin, with one symbol drawn from each of the army, navy, and Chaplain Corps emblems: a dove from the army emblem, cupped hands from the air force emblem, and an anchor from the navy emblem. In addition to using both emblems on the two sides of the AFCC coin, both designs are displayed in the AFCC lobby.

Also included on the front side of the emblem are the words "Caring for the warfighter's soul," a phrase which has been called "both the motto and the vision of the Armed Forces Chaplaincy Center." Training at the AFCC is provided by three service schools co-located on its campus: the US Army Chaplain Center and School (USACHCS), the US Naval Chaplaincy School and Center (NCSC), and the US Air Force Chaplain Corps College (AFCCC). According to USAF Chaplain Steven Keith, the first Director of the AFCC, "Caring for the warfighter's soul" is the "vision" that "binds the Air Force Chaplain Corps College, the Army Chaplain Center and School, and the Naval Chaplaincy School and Center together." The new facilities were dedicated May 6, 2010, under a plan that rotates the Director of the AFCC among the three military services, each serving in that position for one year at a time.Religious symbols were included in designs for older Chaplain School seals, such as the U.S. Army Chaplain School insignia, approved December 26, 1961, that included the symbols for Christian and Jewish chaplains. Current designs all include symbols for shared concepts such as wisdom, learning, faith and peace, instead. Only the Army Chaplain Center and School unit insignia and device incorporates images taken directly from its Chaplain Corps Seal/branch plaque, and they are the only ones to include a biblical verse from the Hebrew scriptures, "The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom."The new school seals also reflect name changes resulting from the move to the AFCC, when the schools that formerly only trained chaplains now train chaplain assistants and religious program specialists, as well. So, for example, the Naval Chaplains School's name was changed on October 1, 2009 to the Naval Chaplaincy School and Center (NCSC). The Air Force school changed its name from the USAF Chaplain Service Institute to the USAF Chaplain Corps College.

JAG (TV series)

JAG (U.S. military acronym for Judge Advocate General) is an American legal drama television show with a distinct U.S. Navy theme, created by Donald P. Bellisario, and produced by Belisarius Productions in association with Paramount Network Television (now CBS Television Studios). This series was originally aired on NBC for one season from September 23, 1995 to May 22, 1996 and then on CBS for an additional nine seasons from January 3, 1997 to April 29, 2005. The first season was co-produced with NBC Productions (now Universal Television) and was originally perceived as a Top Gun meets A Few Good Men hybrid series.In the spring of 1996, NBC announced that the series had been canceled after finishing 79th in the ratings, leaving one episode unaired. In December 1996, the rival network CBS announced it had picked up the series for a mid-season replacement original 15 completed episodes from its second season. For several seasons, JAG climbed in the ratings and ultimately ran for nine additional seasons. JAG furthermore spawned the hit series NCIS, which in turn led to spin-offs NCIS: Los Angeles and NCIS: New Orleans.

In total, 227 episodes were produced over 10 seasons. At the time of the original airing of its fifth season in the United States, JAG was seen in over 90 countries worldwide. JAG entered syndication in early 1999.

Military Service Company

Military Service Company, the oldest division of EBSCO Industries Inc, was founded during World War II and provides an array of goods and services that serve the U.S. military. The Birmingham, AL-based company’s popular military commemoratives inventory includes challenge coins for the Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines, Coast Guard, Veterans, National Guard as well as military-themed license plate holders, pens and more.

Milnet.ca

Milnet.ca is a website privately owned by Canadian officer Major Mike Bobbitt, which serves mainly as an online discussion group regarding the Canadian Forces.

The site has been in operation since 1993, but up until 2007 it went by the name Army.ca and CdnArmy.ca. The site offers two levels of membership for registered users. Free registration is mandatory to participate in forum discussions, while paid subscription provides access to a private forum as well as entitlement to a complimentary numbered Army.ca challenge coin and a t-shirt.

Round of drinks

A round of drinks is a set of alcoholic beverages purchased by one person in a group for that complete group. The purchaser buys the round of drinks as a single order at the bar. In many places it is customary for people to take turns buying rounds.It is a nearly ubiquitous custom in Ireland, the United Kingdom, Canada, New Zealand, and Australia. In Australia and New Zealand it is referred to as shouting. This practice is also customary in many parts of North America, especially in areas where people with cultural roots in Ireland and the UK predominate.

A notable exception was the UK State Management Scheme in which treating (i.e. buying a round) was forbidden, from July 1916 until June 1919.

Show Me the Body

Show Me the Body is an American hardcore punk band from New York. Their eclectic sound draws heavily on hip hop, noise music and sludge metal. Their debut album, Body War, was released in 2016.

Si vis pacem, para bellum

Si vis pacem, para bellum (Classical Latin: [siː wiːs ˈpaːkẽː ˈpara ˈbɛllũː]) is a Latin adage translated as "If you want peace, prepare for war". The phrase is used above all to affirm that one of the most effective means to ensure peace for a people is always to be armed and ready to defend oneself.

Sledgehammer Games

Sledgehammer Games, Inc. is an American video game developer, formed in 2009 by Glen Schofield and Michael Condrey. The pair formerly worked at Visceral Games and are responsible for the creation of Dead Space. The company is an independent, wholly owned subsidiary of Activision and is based in Foster City, California. The studio is known for co-developing Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 with Infinity Ward, and developing Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare as well as Call of Duty: WWII.

Spectemur agendo

Spectemur Agendo is a Latin motto meaning Let us be judged by our acts.

The Silver Star Families of America

The Silver Star Families of America (SSFOA) is a 501(c) tax exempt organization dedicated to honoring and supporting wounded, ill and injured veterans of all branches of the armed forces of the United States of America. The organization was founded in 2004 by Steve and Diana Newton with the assistance of Joseph and Sharon Newton and the entire Newton family. It is not related to the military decoration designated the Silver Star.

United States Secretary of Defense

The Secretary of Defense (SecDef) is the leader and chief executive officer of the United States Department of Defense, the executive department of the Armed Forces of the U.S. The Secretary of Defense's position of command and authority over the U.S. military is second only to that of the President and Congress, respectively. This position corresponds to what is generally known as a Defense Minister in many other countries. The Secretary of Defense is appointed by the President with the advice and consent of the Senate, and is by custom a member of the Cabinet and by law a member of the National Security Council.Secretary of Defense is a statutory office, and the general provision in 10 U.S.C. § 113 provides that the Secretary of Defense has "authority, direction and control over the Department of Defense", and is further designated by the same statute as "the principal assistant to the President in all matters relating to the Department of Defense". To ensure civilian control of the military, no one may be appointed as Secretary of Defense within seven years of serving as a commissioned officer of a regular (i.e., non-reserve) component of an armed force.Subject only to the orders of the President, the Secretary of Defense is in the chain of command and exercises command and control, for both operational and administrative purposes, over all Department of Defense forces — the Army, Marine Corps, Navy, and Air Force — as well as the U.S. Coast Guard when its command and control is transferred to the Department of Defense. Only the Secretary of Defense (or the president or Congress) can authorize the transfer of operational control of forces between the three Military Departments (the departments of the Army, Navy, and Air Force) and the 10 Combatant Commands (Africa Command, Central Command, European Command, Indo-Pacific Command, Northern Command, Southern Command, Cyber Command, Special Operations Command, Strategic Command, Transportation Command). Because the Office of Secretary of Defense is vested with legal powers which exceed those of any commissioned officer, and is second only to the President in the military hierarchy, its incumbent has sometimes unofficially been referred to as a de facto "deputy commander-in-chief". (The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff is the principal military adviser to the Secretary of Defense and the President, and while the Chairman may assist the Secretary and President in their command functions, the Chairman is not in the chain of command.)

The Secretary of Defense, Secretary of State, the Attorney General, and the Secretary of the Treasury are generally regarded as heading the four most important departments.Since January 1, 2019, the Secretary of Defense has been Deputy Defense Secretary Patrick M. Shanahan, serving in an acting capacity. His predecessor, Jim Mattis, resigned on December 20, 2018, effective February 2019, after failing to persuade President Donald Trump to reconsider a decision to withdraw U.S. troops from Syria. A few days later, Trump announced that Mattis would leave at the end of December.

Warrant Officer of the Air Force

Warrant Officer of the Air Force (WOFF-AF) is the most senior Warrant Officer in the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF). It is a singular appointment – it is only held by one person at any time. The special insignia for the WOFF-AF is the Australian coat of arms with a wreath around it. The current Warrant Officer of the Air Force is Robert Swanwick.

Based on the United States Air Force practice of appointing a Chief Master Sergeant of the Air Force, the WOFF-AF is responsible to the Chief of Air Force (CAF).

The appointment is the equivalent of the Regimental Sergeant Major of the Army (RSM-A) in the Australian Army and Warrant Officer of the Navy (WO-N) in the Royal Australian Navy.

The post was created by the then Chief of the Air Staff, Air Marshal I.B. Gration, to provide a conduit between Air Force’s senior leadership and the airman ranks.

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