You might have already seen this news on Soldier Systems Daily, but you know we wouldn’t let something like this slip past without us doing our own take on it.
It might also have already occurred to you that the “ICU” acronym for the name of the uniform is hilariously close to the “I See You” nickname given to ACUs in the horrible UCP camouflage scheme of the US Army. Now, considering that UCP was a 3-colour adaptation of CADPAT and is due for replacement becuase of it ineffectiveness, is this a case of the Canadians having a joke at the US Army’s expense?
If it is a joke at the Americans expense, its not a very good one becuase the Canadians have turned around and adopted a new uniform that actually bears a lot of similarities to the ACU. I guess its a good thing that the US and Canada are such good neighbours, eh?
As you probably know, the pixilated digital camouflage pattern known as CADPAT (Canadian Disruptive Pattern camouflage) started something of a revolution in camouflage design when it was officially adopted in 1997 and rolled out for the Canadian Army in 2002. However, although the camouflage pattern was ground-breakingly ultra-modern, the uniform it was produced in was exactly the same design as the standard OG Combat Uniform that had been adopted for all branches of the Canadian Military in 1963.
Since the Canadian involvement in Afghanistan there have been some minor, incremental changes to the design of the Combat Uniform (most notably, the change to covered buttons on the pockets in order to reduce snagging on equipment) but nonetheless the Combat Uniform design has remained basically the same for almost 50 years! Now, quite why it has taken so long for the Canadians to update their uniform design is anyone’s guess, and the real irony is that the new uniform won’t even be introduced until after Canadian forces have left Afghanistan (having first arrived with only the Temperate version of CADPAT to wear).
Anyways, let’s look more closely at what features the new uniform will have when its introduced next year – note also that the mannequin in the following official photos is also sporting the Canadian Forces new brown combat boot.