Photo: US Army
After four long years of research and testing, the U.S. Army has officially unveiled its newest iteration of camouflage.
It’s called ”Operational Camouflage,” and, as per the New York Times, it looks a lot like a combination of the two most recent camos: The pixelated Universal Camouflage Pattern, which debuted in 2004 and was hated by basically everyone (Army spokesman William Layer told the Times, ”Soldier feedback revealed dissatisfaction”), and 2010”_s Multicam pattern, aka ”Operation Enduring Freedom Camouflage Pattern.”
The new ‘flage, along with a redesigned combat uniform (some of which can be seen in the graphic above), is available for purchase beginning today, July 1, at select Military Clothing Sales stores. It’ll also be immediately absorbed into soldiers’ existing wardrobes. (Hopefully the soldiers like this one a little better.)
Multicam, left, and Universal Camouflage Pattern, right.
The change isn’t without a bit of controversy, though: According to the Times, the OCP has been accused of looking too similar to Multicam, which was created by a private company called Crye Precision. But Layer dismisses such talk. ”Both patterns provide effective concealment under similar conditions,” he says. ”This, plus the shared heritage, accounts for perceived similarities between the two patterns.” Fair enough.
What’s really important is that OCP gets the job done – that is, helping its wearer blend into his or her surroundings, no matter the type of terrain – and, with its expert engineering (this was the most comprehensive camo study, ever), it certainly should.
So, could Operational Camouflage be the new flamo, which was, at one point, the new camo? Could be: As the Timesnotes, various versions of camouflage appeared at no fewer than three major spring 2016 menswear shows in Paris. We’ll just have to wait until next fashion week to see.