Where's the camouflage?

Posted: Wednesday, January 02, 2002

Photo after photo of Marines chasing Osama bin Laden in Afghanistan show the troops in standard-issue camouflage gear -- jungle camouflage. The problem is, there's no jungle in Afghanistan. And according to the Marine Corps Commandant James L. Jones, the corps' complete order of 23,000 desert and woodland camouflage gear will not be delivered for four years.

... It's no secret that the deserts of the Middle East and Central Asia are among the most unstable places in the world. And with the lion's share of the world's oil there, it one of the most likely places for U.S. Marines to see action. That Pentagon planners could not foresee the need for desert camouflage gear is puzzling to say the least.

The Marines are nearly always the first to be sent to the world's most dangerous places, yet their simple need for decent gear seems to have come last for the purchasing and supply officers at the Pentagon. That's not right.

It's understandable that advanced jet fighters and bombers require years of development work, but forcing Marines to wait four years for decent camouflage gear is simply unforgivable.

-- North County Times, Escondido, Calif.

Dec. 20

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