The Washington Post has a pretty good article about the camouflage issue that is a continuing hot topic in the military:
Then things got strange.
Today, there is one camouflage pattern just for Marines in the desert. There is another just for Navy personnel in the desert. The Army has its own “universal” camouflage pattern, which is designed to work anywhere. It also has another one just for Afghanistan, where the first one doesn’t work.
Even the Air Force has its own unique camouflage, used in a new “Airman Battle Uniform.” But it has flaws. So in Afghanistan, airmen are told not to wear it in battle.
In just 11 years, two kinds of camouflage have turned into 10. And a blessedly simple aspect of the U.S. government purchasing system has emerged as a complicated and expensive case study in federal duplication.
Duplication is one of Washington’s most expensive traditions: Multiple agencies do the same job at the same time, and taxpayers pay billions for government to repeat itself.
Now, the habit remains stubbornly hard to break, even in an era of austerity. There are, for instance, 209 federal programs to improve science and math skills. There are 16 programs that all teach personal finance.
At the Pentagon, the odd saga of the multiplying uniforms has provided a step-by-step illustration of how duplication blooms in government — and why it’s usually not good. [Washington Post]
You can read a lot more at the link, but this topic has long been discussed here at the ROK Drop. Testing and the eventual fielding of the ACU cost the Army $5 billion and it was obvious from the beginning that it was an inferior design to the Marines’ MARPAT. The fiscally prudent thing to do would be to take off the globe and anchors on the MARPAT and make it a military wide uniform despite Marine objections. Since this is not happening this should and the Pentagon still has enough money to play uniform games, this should be seen as a sign that the sequester is not as bad as advertised. Likewise for the rest of the government that keeps all their multiple agencies doing the same job despite the sequester.