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Military Alphabet

The military alphabet, or more properly the phonetic alphabet, exists in innumerable variants.

If any one variant can be viewed as "most correct", it is the current NATO standard military alphabet. However, even in that standard for the military alphabet, numerous spelling variations are known to exist. This version of the military alphabet is also known as the ICAO (International Civil Aviation Organization) code.

Variations of the Alphabet

This chart shows the NATO standard military alphabet along with a military alphabet used by the U.S. Navy before 1954, the military alphabet used by the U.S. Army in 1916, and the commercial Western Union phonetic alphabet.

Letter
NATO
U.S. Navy
(Pre-1954)
U.S. Army
(1916)
Western Union
A
Alpha Able Able Adams
B
Bravo Baker Buy Boston
C
Charlie Charlie Cast Chicago
D
Delta Dog Dock Denver
E
Echo Easy Easy Easy
F
Foxtrot Fox Fox Frank
G
Golf George George George
H
Hotel How Have Henry
I
India Item Item Ida
J
Juliet Jig Jig John
K
Kilo King King King
L
Lima Love Love Lincoln
M
Mike Mike Mike Mary
N
November Nan Nap New York
O
Oscar Oboe Opal Ocean
P
Papa Peter Pup Peter
Q
Quebec Queen Quack Queen
R
Romeo Roger Rush Roger
S
Sierra Sugar Sail Sugar
T
Tango Tare Tape Thomas
U
Uniform Uncle Unit Union
V
Victor Victor Vice Victor
W
Whiskey William Watch William
X
Xray X-ray X-ray X-ray
Y
Yankee Yoke Yoke Young
Z
Zulu Zebra Zed Zero

Example Usage of the Military Alphabet

Using the military alphabet to spell out "FortLiberty, we would say:

Foxtrot, Oscar, Romeo, Tango, Lima, India, Bravo, Echo, Romeo, Tango, Yankee

Military Alphabet Pronounciation Guide

Letter
Pronounciation
Letter
Pronounciation
A
AL FAH
N
NO VEM BER
B
BRAH VOH
O
OSS CAH
C
CHAR LEE
P
PAH PAH
D
DELL TAH
Q
KEH BECK
E
ECK OH
R
ROW ME OH
F
FOKS TROT
S
SEE AIR RAH
G
GOLF
T
TANG GO
H
HOH TELL
U
YOU NEE FORM
I
IN DEE AH
V
VIK TAH
J
JEW LEE ETT
W
WISS KEY
K
KEY LOH
X
ECKS RAY
L
LEE MAH
Y
YANG KEY
M
MIKE
Z
ZOO LOO

The Numeric Military Alphabet

There is also a military "alphabet" for numbers, which is mainly a pronounciation guide.

Number
Pronounciation
0
Zeero
1
Wun
2
Too
3
Tree
4
Fow-er
5
Fife
6
Siks
7
Seven
8
Ait
9
Nine

 

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