August 1, 2013  

Uniform uniformity

To Congress for reining in the proliferation of service-specific uniform designs.

Over the past decade, taxpayers and service members alike have been treated to a seemingly never-ending series of service-specific tweaks and overhauls to utility and combat uniforms. The Air Force alone has spent millions of dollars to develop several new camouflage designs, while the Navy put its sailors in the blue “aquaflage” that doesn’t conceal anyone until they fall overboard.

Both the House and Senate armed services committees have now said, essentially: Knock it off. A provision in the 2014 Defense Authorization Bill would forbid the services to adopt new designs for combat and camouflage uniforms. The bill allows a few exceptions — for example, special operators — but in general DoD will be required “to the maximum extent practicable” to establish a joint combat uniform by 2018.

So, good on you, lawmakers. Now, let’s talk about your refusal, for the fifth year in a row, to allow a new round of base closings …