Skiing in the jungle

Questions were asked on RTE this morning (6th report) as to why Irish troops serving in Chad were wearing dark, heavy jungle fatigues instead of the more appropriate light desert blending uniforms that all other nations wear in such conditions.

An RTE reporter visiting Chad was told:

“The Irish Defence Forces wanted to stand out, they wanted everybody to know who they were and on that basis they would be in some way different. What was unstated was they wanted to be different from the French but for the men and women serving out there it’s going to be very rough indeed.”

It certainly is going to be very rough. South Lebanon is nowhere near as hot as the deserts of Chad but when I served there with the UN we were issued with very light, very comfortable uniforms and were very happy with not having to wear the heavier Irish Defence Forces uniforms.

To wear jungle fatigues in the desert is just as ridiculous as wearing polar uniforms and skis in the jungle and must be deeply embarrassing as well as very uncomfortable for Irish troops.