December 21st, 2009
10:00 AM ET

British troops get new camouflage based on Afganistan's terrain

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.

Read more on the British troops' first new camouflage in 40 years

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Filed under: Troops
soundoff (16 Responses)
  1. Adwyth

    It’s really all about minimizing presence and exposure. Spend hours in a laying up position, five, six meters above a trail, and push the little rubberized tit on your comms set every time someone comes up the trail. Chew on a boiled sweet or an energy bar, sip water sparingly, don’t stink of cigarette smoke or toothpaste…and don’t make noise, including the god-awful sound of Velcro opening. Yes, I’ve done it…Ulster in the early seventies, South Atlantic in the early eighties.

    The metal components of snaps rust and they’re hard to replace by one’s self.

    December 24, 2009 at 8:13 am | Report abuse |
  2. RLTW

    I would like to think that if youre in a situation that requires you to be noise disciplined you wouldnt be reaching in your breast pocket for an energy bar or sunscreen.

    I can assure you Velcro can't be heard over a M4 being fired.

    December 24, 2009 at 12:07 am | Report abuse |
  3. stravis2 seems as though everyone has an opinion about buttons and velcro...why not use a snap?

    December 23, 2009 at 9:39 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Prof Kingman

    It doesn't matter what pattern or color the new uniforms are. They still have a virtural target on their backs. The new patterns should be worn by certain world leaders first before the troops receive them. I would suggest sending Stephen Harper and Gordon Campbell as guinea pigs to test out the new uniforms.

    December 23, 2009 at 6:24 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Adwyth

    "Velcro wears out, buttons do not. The "noise" issue is somewhat non-relevant since no stealthy soldier is going to be drawing a knife or weapon from their pocket on a raid."


    Energy bars in breast pocket, map in side trouser pocket, sunblock/sunscreen tube in sleeve pocket. The Royal Navy used Velcro for a while, then went back to buttons because of the noise.

    December 23, 2009 at 4:29 pm | Report abuse |
  6. OC

    Just a few things about this uniform from a person that's spent some time in that neck of the woods...

    1. Velcro wears out, buttons do not. The "noise" issue is somewhat non-relevant since no stealthy soldier is going to be drawing a knife or weapon from their pocket on a raid.

    2. There's more green in afghanistan than one would think.

    That's it for now, I can't really see all of the pictures from work for a full critique.


    December 23, 2009 at 3:19 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Casper

    I'm sure that after a week there, the green uniforms turn brown

    December 23, 2009 at 12:22 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Mike

    Afghanistan is a mix of terrains and backgrounds, but US Special Forces use the original version of this pattern (MultiCam) rather than the abominable "universal camouflage pattern" of the US Army of the last few years. This new UK pattern was developed by Crye Associates, who developed MultiCam. The US is doing trials of a modified UCP and MultiCam in Afghanistan now.

    December 23, 2009 at 10:23 am | Report abuse |
  9. Vincent Campellone

    Camouflage was a good device sixty years ago for the military. Lets get real. Todays
    warfare, our soldiers are sitting targets in this regalia. And overloaded with equipment.
    We should resort to ranger tatics. Plain and simple-tit for tat, 1943-style Banes Les Banes!
    The enemy don't play by the rules. Neither does Copenhagen or Geneva. America has been fighting these bums battles for years. While they fiddle in the board rooms. Fleecing our country! Our boys have fought, in, Africa, Italy, France, Germany, Pacific Islands, Korea, Vietnam. Indian wars, Spanish American Wars, American Civil Wars. It's time to send in the Attornies and Executives in tu tu's, Since they started these messes! Or possibly, Lawrence of Arabia in his sheet, on a camel!

    December 23, 2009 at 9:26 am | Report abuse |
  10. ex soldier

    The British have ceen in Helmand since the start covering the whole area. With the new US troop surge the US marines will be covering the open lands and the British will be in the 'green belt' which is the heavily cultivated area along the Helmand River. Desert colours, as they found to their cost, stand out against this background and woodland colours would be too dark so the new pattern is to blend in to this area.

    December 23, 2009 at 5:49 am | Report abuse |
  11. Cassidy Nichols

    It looks a lot like a pattern known as Multicam, which was considered for the US army in the late 1990's and is being considered again for Afghanistan.

    December 22, 2009 at 9:10 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Adwyth

    Actually, velcro is a terrible idea...let's put something that makes a really loud noise on our action working dress (ADW). Then, hopefully, while visually blending into our surrounds, we'll audibly give away our positions each time we open an ADW closure.

    December 22, 2009 at 7:29 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Ron Yarborough

    velcro is needed ...not plastic buttons.

    December 22, 2009 at 5:49 pm | Report abuse |
  14. historybuff


    The British have been in Afghanistan on and off since the 1820's.

    December 22, 2009 at 4:37 pm | Report abuse |
  15. A. Smith, Oregon

    Considering that much of the terrain the foreign troops encounter in Afghanistan is filled with crushed rock and rock dust the color of Portland Cement, it 'kind of' makes since to greatly increase the color 'GREY' in any camouflage clothing used in Afghanistan. Typical woodland prints with its emphasis on the color 'GREEN' is certainly going to stand out and mark that solider as a TARGET!

    December 22, 2009 at 4:02 pm | Report abuse |
  16. TK

    ...and how long have British forces been in Afganistan??

    December 22, 2009 at 2:39 pm | Report abuse |