Quick review: we once had the same camoflage uniform as everyone else in the military. Easy to get everything you needed from actual uniforms to rank insignia and name plates. You could stand in formation with your sister services and from a distance looked like a Joint Force and not a meeting of the East Congo Boy Scouts.
Then with the new Century, the Marines got their own. Not to be outdone by their plucky little cousin, then the Army decided that all their wars would be fought in grey cinderblock buildings like those they train in - and they had to get their own. The USAF decided it wanted its own and put all the rejected Army ideas in a blender and got their own ..... then the Navy decided that it wanted something to hide paint drippings with.
Woops - then the Navy realized that some of its Sailors actually had to fight within a donut's throw of land and the old BDU and DCU they were wearing were so unsupportable in the field - that besides the CNO's entourage that toured the combat zones looking like the best dressed Army desert soldiers of 1998 - it had reached the point that most Navy personnel were wearing Army uniforms while deployed just so they could function without looking like a member of the Southeast West Virginia's Peoples Militia & Possum Hunting Club.
So, now that our Sailors are going broke to wear their NWU "only fall overboard once" paint sponges (see tomorrow's guest post for those details) - perhaps there could have been a chance to adopt one combat uniform .... say like Multicam .... and lighten the seabag a bit. Also, it could have helped us to once again actually have a uniform uniform; one that could have been easily supported worldwide through any service's AAFES or NEX or via mail order - or as a radical concept - even the supply system.
Well, he11 no. Instead we demonstrate once again that we cannot lead in a clear and direct manner. We cannot even clothe our Sailors without having to go to the white board to diagram the relationships & reasons. We cannot even leave base without consulting the JAG first in conjunction with the lunar and tide tables.
Behold the festering nightmare that is Navy uniform policy!
FM CNO WASHINGTON DC//N1//
MSGID/GENADMIN/CNO WASHINGTON DC/N1/DEC// SUBJ/NAVY WORKING UNIFORM TYPE II AND III// REF/A/MSG/CNO WASHINGTON DC/262243Z JUN 09//
REF/B/DOC/NAVPERS 15665I/01JAN2003// NARR/REF A IS NAVADMIN 188/09. REF B IS U.S. NAVY UNIFORM REGULATIONS.//
RMKS/1. THIS NAVADMIN ANNOUNCES CHIEF OF NAVAL OPERATIONS APPROVAL OF THE NAVY WORKING UNIFORM (NWU) TYPE II AND III. THE NWU COLORING SCHEMES CONSIST OF TWO UNIQUE FOUR-SHADED DIGITAL CAMOUFLAGE PROFILES (DESERT AND WOODLAND) DEVELOPED BY NAVAL SPECIAL WARFARE (NSW) UNDER THE AUTHORITY AND GUIDANCE OF UNITED STATES SPECIAL OPERATIONS COMMAND FOR NSW AND MARITIME SPECIAL OPERATIONS FORCES. THE TACTICAL ADVANTAGE PROVIDED BY NWU TYPE II (DESERT) AND TYPE III (WOODLAND) DIGITAL PATTERNS WILL INCREASE PROBABILITY OF MISSION SUCCESS AND SURVIVABILITY IN COMBAT AND IRREGULAR WARFARE OPERATIONS DUE TO THE REDUCED VISUAL SIGNATURE IN THESE OPERATIONAL ENVIRONMENTS.
2. THE NWU TYPE II AND III ARE OF UNISEX DESIGN AND INCLUDES THE NAVY'S LOGO ANCHOR CONSTITUTION EAGLE (ACE) DESIGN IN THE PRINT OF THE FABRIC. THE NWU TYPE II AND III WILL UNDERGO CONFORMANCE TESTING DURING 2010 TO VALIDATE DESIGN, FIT, AND WEAR. A PHASED FLEET DISTRIBUTION WILL COMMENCE ONCE CONFORMANCE TESTING IS COMPLETE WITH PRIORITY DISTRIBUTION TO DEPLOYING COMBAT AND DIRECT COMBAT SUPPORT COMMANDS AND UNITS.
3. OCCASION FOR WEAR:
A. THE NWU TYPE II WILL BE WORN ONLY BY NAVY SPECIAL WARFARE (NSW) PERSONNEL, SAILORS ASSIGNED TO NSW UNITS, OR SAILORS ASSIGNED TO UNITS DIRECTLY SUPPORTING NSW MISSIONS WITHIN THE THEATER OF OPERATIONS. IN THE CONTINENTAL UNITED STATES, THE NWU TYPE II WILL ONLY BE WORN BY THE AFOREMENTIONED AUTHORIZED PERSONNEL ON TRAINING RANGES OR DURING ACTUAL OPERATIONS REQUIRING A DESERT CAMOUFLAGE UNIFORM. ALL OTHER COMMANDS AND INDIVIDUALS REQUIRING THE WEAR OF DESERT CAMOUFLAGE UNIFORMS WILL CONTINUE TO WEAR THE CURRENT TRI-COLOR DESERT CAMOUFLAGE UTILITY UNIFORM.
B. THE NWU TYPE III WILL REPLACE THE EXISTING TRI-COLORED WOODLAND CAMOUFLAGE UTILITY UNIFORM AND WILL BE THE STANDARD CAMOUFLAGE UNIFORM WORN IN CONUS AND CAN BE WORN DEPLOYED AS PRESCRIBED BY COMBATANT COMMANDERS. OCCASION FOR WEAR OF THE NWU TYPE III WILL BE THE SAME AS THE CURRENT WOODLAND CAMOUFLAGE UTILITY UNIFORM PER REF A, COMMANDS AND SAILORS CURRENTLY AUTHORIZED TO WEAR THE WOODLAND CAMOUFLAGE UTILITY UNIFORM (CUU) WILL CONTINUE TO WEAR THE CUU AS THEIR PRIMARY DAILY UNIFORM UNTIL THEIR TRANSITION TO THE NEW NWU TYPE III.
C. CNIC NAVY SECURITY FORCE SAILORS, TO INCLUDE AUXILIARY SECURITY FORCES AND RESERVE SECURITY FORCES, WILL WEAR NWU TYPE I (BLUE/GREY/BLACK) UNLESS ASSIGNED TO NSW COMMANDS AS OUTLINED IN PARAGRAPH 3A.
4. BASIC NWU TYPE II AND III COMPONENTS INCLUDE BROWN COTTON UNDERSHIRT, BLACK BOOT SOCKS, BLOUSING STRAPS, NAVY CERTIFIED DESERT TAN OR BROWN BRUSHLESS BOOTS, 1 1/4 INCH BLACK COTTON, NYLON OR ELASTIC WOVEN WEB BELT WITH BLACK TIP AND BLACK OPEN FACE BUCKLE OR 1 3/4 INCH WIDE BLACK OR TAN ONE PIECE ADJUSTABLE NYLON WEBBING RIGGERS BELT WITH FORGED STEEL BUCKLE,D-RING AND HOOK AND LOOP FASTENER, EIGHT POINT UTILITY CAP, UNISEX BLOUSE AND TROUSERS, EMBROIDERED COLLAR DEVICES (E4 AND ABOVE), SERVICE AND NAME TAPE.
5. PRESCRIBED NWU TYPE II AND III COMPONENTS INCLUDE MATCHING PATTERN WATERPROOF AND BREATHABLE FABRIC PARKA WITH REMOVABLE TAN FLEECE LINER AND SLIP ON RANK INSIGNIA FOR EXTREME COLD WEATHER SYSTEM (ECWS) PARKAS AND BLACK KNIT WATCH CAP.
6. OPTIONAL COMPONENTS INCLUDE SMOOTH BLACK LEATHER BOOTS, BROWN BOOT SOCKS, EARMUFFS (WITH OUTER-GARMENTS ONLY), EARRINGS (GOLD BALL FOR FEMALE E7 AND ABOVE AND SILVER BALL FOR FEMALE E6 AND BELOW), AND BLACK LEATHER GLOVES.
7. MANNER OF WEAR: THE MANNER OF WEAR OF THE NWU TYPE II AND III WILL BE CONSISTENT WITH THE CURRENT CAMOUFLAGE UTILITY UNIFORMS (DESERT AND WOODLAND) AS OUTLINED IN REF B. THE NWU TYPE II AND III WILL BE PROCURED AND ISSUED AS ORGANIZATIONAL CLOTHING AND WILL REMAIN THE PROPERTY OF THE ISSUING COMMAND.
8. PROGRAM MANAGEMENT AND TECHNICAL AUTHORITY FOR THE NWU TYPE II AND III IS ASSIGNED TO NAVAL FACILITIES ENGINEERING COMMAND (NAVFAC). PROGRAM MANAGER AND TECHNICAL AUTHORITY FOR THE DIGITAL CAMOUFLAGE PATTERNS IS ASSIGNED TO PROGRAM MANAGER SPECIAL OPERATIONS FORCES SURVIVAL, SUPPORT AND EQUIPMENT SYSTEMS (PM-SOF SSES), US ARMY SOLDIER SYSTEMS CENTER, NATICK AS DIRECTED BY NSW. DISTRIBUTION AUTHORITY OF THE NWU TYPE II IS ASSIGNED TO COMMANDER, NAVAL SPECIAL WARFARE COMMAND. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION REGARDING AVAILABILITY AND DISTRIBUTION OF THE NWU TYPE II AND III WILL BE ANNOUNCED VIA FUTURE NAVADMIN.
9. FILE THIS NAVADMIN UNTIL CHANGES ARE INCORPORATED INTO THE QUARTERLY BUPERS DIRECTIVE CD-ROM CHANGE CONTAINING REF A. IN THE INTERIM, FOR MORE INFORMATION ON UNIFORMS AND UNIFORM POLICY, VISIT THE NAVY UNIFORM MATTERS WEBSITE AT
10. POINTS OF CONTACTS:
A. NWU TYPE II AND III PROGRAM MANAGER AND TECHNICAL AUTHORITY: MR. ANDY [redacted] AT (202) 433-[redacted] OR EMAIL AT ANDY.[redacted](AT)NAVY.MIL.
B. NWU TYPE II AND III CONFORMANCE TEST COORDINATOR: EODCM ROB [redacted], EODGRU TWO (N7), AT (757) 462-[redacted], EXT [redacted], DSN 253, OR EMAIL AT ROBERT.[redacted](AT)NAVY.MIL.
C. DIGITAL CAMOUFLAGE PROGRAM MANAGER AND TECHNICAL AUTHORITY: MR TOM [redacted] AT (508) 233-[redacted] OR EMAIL AT THOMAS.[redacted](AT)US.ARMY.MIL.
11. RELEASED BY VADM MARK FERGUSON, N1.//