How much do you know about the U.S. Military?


By: Annette

5 Min Quiz

Image: wiki commons

About This Quiz

Do you know which branch of the U.S. military had the honor of flying their flag at Iwo Jima? Remember whether a Colonel outranks a Major, or which department has its own infantry? And of course, everyone knows that Navy SEALs are the toughest people around, but do you know what SEAL stands for? If you consider yourself an expert on all things military, take our quiz to prove you've got what it takes!

For such an incredible global power, it's easy to forget that the U.S. military isn't all that old. It started as the Continental Army in the 1770s, when the 13 colonies declared independence, leaving them forced to do battle against Great Britain, which had one of the strongest military forces in the world at the time. 

After the war ended and the U.S. emerged victoriously, Congress established permanent armed forces for the first time. The Army got its start in 1784, followed by the Navy a few years later, and the Marines by the end of the century. The Coast Guard and Air Force followed in the 20th century, leading to the military you're familiar with today.

With more than 1.3 million active duty members, the modern U.S. military is the largest in the world, and the U.S. accounts for a whopping 40 percent of all global military spending. Think you know everything there is to know about this military behemoth? Take our quiz to find out!

Of these branches of the military, where does the infantry come from?

The infantry comes from the army. They're the guys that dive into the battle head-first.


What branch of the military flew the flag at Iwo Jima?

Brave marines were responsible for raising the flag at Iwo Jima, which was immortalized in the famous sculpture in D.C.


What is a Howitzer?

A Howitzer is a type of cannon. The original Howitzer was designed for a curved shot, over a wall or other obstacle.


What does SEAL mean?

A Navy SEAL is named for Sea, Air and Land. No one knows where the E comes from.


Aviation weaponry includes all but which one of these?

It would be hard to use tanks in aviation, but it would be interesting to watch someone try.


Who is just above a major general?

Lieutenant is next up the ladder. George Washington was the first officer to ever be appointed to lieutenant general.


Which of these was a part of the Indian Wars in the U.S?

There were a number of battles in the Indian Wars, and the Seminole Wars were a part of that.


Which war was "Saving Private Ryan" about?

"Saving Private Ryan" is considered to be one of the best WWII movies ever made. The depiction of D-Day is unparalleled.


Which is the largest U.S. fort, by population?

Largest by population, Fort Bragg is located in North Carolina and has nearly a quarter million people. Huge.


Which of these are not a component of the modern army?

The coast guard is not part of the army. But they're still pretty tough.


FDR's four freedoms did NOT include this.

FDR's four freedoms are what our military fights for, but freedom from suffering is not included. FDR's other freedom is freedom from fear.


When was poison gas first used?

It began in WWI, and the repercussions were awful. Some soldiers had lung problems for the rest of their lives.


What was the name of the famous Apache chief who resisted during the Indian war?

Geronimo was the chief that resisted American invasion, and he became​ quite famous for it.


Where is the United States Military Academy?

West Point is where you'll find the United States Military Academy. It's home to future soldiers, patriotism, and great football games.


Which of these was not a cause of WWII?

Of the four official reasons for WWII, colonialism wasn't one, but the others were. Along with the arms race.


Which of these ideologies has led the U.S. to go to war?

All of these ideologies have led the U.S. military to fight. Sometimes we just can't agree to disagree.


What do you call a four-star​ general?

A four-star general is either referred to as a full general, or just a general. He has arrived, and finally earned the name of general.


What is a one-star general called?

A brigadier general has one star. It would be a shame to call them a minor general.


How many stars does a major general have?

A major general has two stars. A major general can command units from 10,000 to 15,000 men.


How many men are in a typical SEAL platoon?

There are about 16 highly-trained men in each platoon. But they probably have the strength of 100 men combined.


What is the study of how humans deal with the stress of killing?

Killology is the study of how killing someone affects​ a soldier. For most people, it causes an understandable amount of stress.


Which war was at the center of James Fenimore Cooper’s "The Last of the Mohicans"?

The French and Indian War is the setting for "The Last of the Mohicans." The book was also made into two movies, one with Daniel Day-Lewis.


Which of these was not a threat to %0DAmerican autonomy by the British?

The Tea Party was the American reaction to the British tax on tea, but all the other British legislation made Americans defiantly mad.


How many American soldiers were killed in the Revolutionary War?

25,000 men lost their lives, and that was roughly 5% of white men of military age.


What happened to U.S. neutrality in the War of 1812?

America did their best at neutrality, but finally, they tossed it off and went to war. This would happen again after Pearl Harbor was attacked in WWII.


Which of these men was not a general in the Mexican-American War?

Patton was a general in WWII, but all the other generals served in the Mexican-American War and went on to command in the Civil War.


How many of the first 43 U.S. presidents have served in the army?

Thirty of the first 43 U.S. presidents served in the army. Presidents Washington and Eisenhower were five-star generals.


The consequences of the Treaty of Versailles affected​ Germany in many ways, but this wasn't one of them.

The Treaty of Versailles didn't mention Hitler, because he wasn't in power yet! This was WWI, folks.


Of all these, which was the best general?

Obviously, George Washington was the best, not just because he was our first president, but because the others were considered​ to be some of the worst.


Of these, which was the worst general?

John Lucas was considered to be pretty bad, but those other guys were highly acclaimed.


"Dances with Wolves" takes place during which war?

The American Indian Wars are the setting for "Dances with Wolves." The film focuses on the Native Americans' perspective.


How many major kinds of warships are there?

These include surface ships, aviation ships and submarines. Aviation ships refer to aircraft carriers, some of the most amazing military ships in history.


Which of these do you not want to call a marine?

Don't call a marine a scaredy cat, please. All of the other names are suitable -- at least, for one marine to say to another marine. Civilians should probably avoid all of these terms.


There are many U.S. military historians, but this is not one of them.

Phillip Roth is a great writer, but he's no military historian.


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