In South Africa, a military body or command; also, sometimes, an expedition or raid; as, a commando of a hundred Boers.
"The war bands, called commandos, have played a great part in the . . . military history of the country."
[Webster 1913 Suppl.]
a usually small military unit trained to perform special missions, often behind enemy lines, and usually employing hit-and-run tactics. Such units often have the destruction of fixed targets, such as enemy installations, as their mission, in contrast to normal combat units which engage the enemy army directly. [PJC]
commando, n. (pl. -os) Mil.
1 a a unit of British amphibious shock troops. b a member of such a unit. c a similar unit or member of such a unit elsewhere.
2 a a party of men called out for military service. b a body of troops.
3 (attrib.) of or concerning a commando (a commando operation).