Sunday, December 20, 2009

Updating the Look of the British Army

It’s always nice to see an ally focused on warfighting:

British troops will get new camouflage uniforms for the first time in more than 40 years, based on computer modeling of Afghanistan’s terrain, the Ministry of Defence announced Sunday.

The “multi-terrain pattern,” as the military has dubbed the new design, is the first new pattern from the Ministry of Defence since 1968, it said.

It is specifically designed with Afghanistan’s Helmand province in mind, the ministry said in a statement. The British military have suffered heavy losses in the southern province this year. More than 100 British troops have died in Afghanistan in 2009, making it the deadliest for UK troops in many years.

The new design was put together in six months, funded as an “urgent operational requirement” project worth £250,000 ($400,000).

“This new camouflage will help our troops blend into different environments in Helmand Province to stay hidden from the Taliban,” Defence Secretary Bob Ainsworth said in a statement.

The project included aerial and scientific photography in Afghanistan “to provide the right colors and their brightness,” the ministry said. “The colors were fed into a computer and computer modeling was used to represent the Green Zone, deserts and mixed environments in Afghanistan.”

It’s not as “high-tech” looking as the digital patterns that our troops use, but it’s a good start. I do have to note that, in nearly all instances, the insurgents who oppose us never wear this kind of camoflage, and just wear the regular clothing that can be found anywhere in Afghanistan. If uniforms were so important, why is it that our enemies never bother making theirs as camoflaged as the ones our troops and our allies wear?

Is it really that important? Or is this something that pleases the generals?

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