There are several ways that Army uniform regulations seek to provide the sometimes overlooked Infantryman with recognition. Probably the most notable is the Combat Infantryman Badge, created in World War II as a morale booster (today it can also be awarded to Ranger and Special Forces personnel). Right behind is the blue Infantry shoulder cord, one of only two shoulder cords (not counting aiguillettes worn by aides) specifically authorized for wear with the Army Service Uniform. Then there is the blue Infantry disc upon which collar insignia are mounted, and let’s not forget the same type of blue mounting disc used for the cap device worn on the front of the Combination Cap worn with the Army Service Uniform.

However, there is one thing the Army has not done to highlight a Soldier’s status as a member of the Infantry branch: Authorize “INFANTRY” shoulder tabs to be worn on the Army Service or Army Combat Uniforms. There are only a handful of special qualification tabs—Infantry is most definitely not one of them.

But this doesn’t mean Infantry tabs were absolutely never worn because Army folklore is chock-a-block with stories of Soldiers designing all types of insignias and other accouterments and wearing them without seeking permission from local commanders. One such homemade tab, SAPPER, was eventually embraced by Army officials and authorized for wear in 2004.

Still, we must repeat—don’t wear this on the ASU or ACU. Instead, try making it part of a shadow box collection, or attach it to a hat, coat, shirt, jacket, or hoodie and turn them into conversation starters!

Related U.S. Army Infantry Items
ACU Patch

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