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bazooka,in warfare, portable, lightweight metal tube from which rockets are launched, usually operated by two men. It is used by infantry as an antitank weapon and also for attacking pillboxes and bunkers. In general, the bazooka is a short-range weapon with low accuracy; however, it gives the individual soldier the means of destroying heavily armored vehicles and fortified positions. An American invention, it was widely used in World War II—first by the Allies and later by the Germans—and in the Korean War by the UN forces. Since then, bazookas have largely been replaced by recoilless rifles, rocket-propelled grenades, antitank missiles, and other weapons. In modern warfare, the first major use of the rocket as a weapon was in the bazooka. See rocketrocket,
any vehicle propelled by ejection of the gases produced by combustion of self-contained propellants. Rockets are used in fireworks, as military weapons, and in scientific applications such as space exploration.
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Popular name applied to the 2.36-inch (60-millimeter) rocket launcher.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.