A silver badge 2 inches (5.08 cm) in width overall consisting of an oak wreath supporting a rectangle bearing a bayonet surmounting a grenade, all silver. Stars are added at the top to indicate subsequent awards; one star for the second award, two stars for the third award and three stars for the fourth award.
In keeping with the spirit of the Warrior Ethos, the Combat Action Badge (CAB) provides special recognition to Soldiers who personally engage the enemy, or are engaged by the enemy during combat operations. The bayonet and grenade are associated with active combat. The oak wreath symbolizes strength and loyalty.
See Army Regulation 600-8-22, Military Awards.
On 2 May 2005, the Chief of Staff, Army, approved the creation of the CAB to provide special recognition to soldiers who personally engage, or are engaged by the enemy. HQDA Letter 600-05-1, dated 3 June 2005, announced the establishment of the Combat Action Badge. Changes in the approval authority were approved by the Assistant Secretary of the Army (Manpower and Reserve Affairs) on 24 June 2008.
Subdued badges are authorized in flat black metal finishes.
A dress miniature badge, 13/16 inch (2.06 cm) in width is authorized for wear on the mess uniforms. A miniature badge, 1 3/16 inches (3.02 cm) in width is also authorized in lieu of the regular size badge.