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This is harder than it should be...

Posted by ESC on March 06, 2000

In Reply to: This is harder than it should be... posted by Bob on March 06, 2000

: : : : : : : : I can't find the derivation of this title for this type of missile. Any ideas? There's nothing that I can find in Britannica oe Encarta.

: : : : : : : Just an idea:
: : : : : : : Norwegian skudda to push
: : : : : : : Danish skyde to shoot, shove, push

: : : : : : : Sorta missilish??

: : : : : : I give up. "Speaking Freely: A Guided Tour of American English from Plymouth Rock to Silicon Valley..." by Stuart Berg Flexner & Anne H. Soukhanov has a "Scud" entry but it doesn't give the origin of the term. I thought it was an abbreviation (SCUD) but it is shown as "Scud." Maybe it's a Russian word. Here's what was in the book: "Scud, a ballistic missile used by the Iraqis against targets in both Saudi Arabia and Israel. Developed by the Russians in the 1950s, it was a direct descendant of the German V-2 used against allied cities in 1944-45. The Iraqis fired a total of 81 Scuds. The U.S. countered with the Patriot Missile, soon sorted to the Patriot."

: : : : : Well, this isn't Russian, but "scud" is "(meteorological slang) A low, fast-moving cloud." From "Slang: The Authoritative Topic-by- Topic Dictionary..." by Paul Dickson (Pocket Books, New York, 1990, 1998).

: : : : Checked my Russian dictionary and couldn't find it. The dictionary's 30 years old, though. It could be a Russian acronym, too. I'll keep checking.

: : : I think it's an acronym, but what? Possibly something like: Soviet Countries Unguided Deployed
: : : missile. There must be an answer somewhere!

: : 'Silent Controlled Undetectable Destructive' There's your SCUD.

: I've been through a few hours of on-line futility, and even a little bit of library futility. You'd think the origin of Scud would be easier to find. Anybody else?

It's on to the Pentagon. Who volunteers to call up the Pentagon's information office and pose this question?