The Army’s latest uniform addition is the Combat Cloth Face Covering, also known in simple terms as a face mask.

Now that the COVID-19 pandemic has ravaged the country for about nine months, the Army finally decided to get an official face mask, right on the heels of the announcement that vaccines have begun being distributed.

The branch, in developing the nomenclature for its tactical face fabric, has opted to officially name it the “Combat Cloth Face Covering” — CCFC for short, although “face mask” is probably still the most time-efficient name for it.

Though a long name, it certainly does adhere to the typical naming conventions used by the Defense Department, which often comes up with contrived or outright ridiculous acronyms like the U.S. Army John F. Kennedy Special Warfare Center and School Dining Facility, called USAJFKSWCSDFAC, or the Maneuver Advanced Noncommissioned Officers Course, known as MANCOC.

And while you might think that it seems a little late in the game to start issuing face masks, “the CCFC was designed, developed, and produced along an expedited timeline,” according to an Army release.

“This past summer, the Army Uniform Board recommended and General James C. McConville, the U.S. Army Chief of Staff, approved issuing CCFCs to Soldiers at Initial Entry Training (IET) as part of their clothing bag,” the release notes. “At the 152nd AUB, Army officials said that the Defense Logistics Agency (DLA) will begin issuing two CCFCs to each new Soldier during the second quarter of FY2021.”

Ah yes, because soldiers will certainly have the most need of new face coverings at what is projected to be the beginning of the end of the pandemic.

Perhaps a more accurate acronym would be WITAYTGTFCANIBOGA, short for “Wow It Took A Year To Get This Face Covering And Now It’s Basically Obsolete, Go Army.”

Hooah, now you can hide your face.

Observation Post is the Military Times one-stop shop for all things off-duty. Stories may reflect author observations.

Sarah Sicard is a Senior Editor with Military Times. She previously served as the Digitial Editor of Military Times and the Army Times Editor. Other work can be found at National Defense Magazine, Task & Purpose, and Defense News.

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