Gucci Commando Gear

Special Operations Technology is reporting an effort by SOCOM to fill urgent equipment needs from overseas companies. Part of the Defense Acquisition Challenge and the Foreign Comparative Test program, the snake eater community is looking at nine particular systems to fill their kit bags, SO-Tech reports .

Some of them look pretty interesting, including:

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Anti-Materiel Rifle, Croatia, Republic of South Africa:This project will evaluate anti-materiel rifles developed by Denel of the Republic of South Africa and RH-Alan of Croatia , subjecting them to a variety of tests to evaluate their performance and ultimately select one rifle with the capability to defeat materiel targets such as lightly armored vehicles, power stations, communication assets and unexploded ordnance.

Psychological Operations Radio Broadcast Platform, Norway:This project will evaluate deployment of an FM broadcast system developed by Tyra Invest AS of Norway using a tethered balloon concept. The system to be tested can place an FM broadcast transmitter at a predetermined altitude for up to five days and transmit psychological operations messages to personnel on the ground. The system is designed to be deployed from fighter aircraft by means of a standard MK-7/20 (PDU-5B) canister.

Modular Advanced Composite Armor Kits:This project will evaluate lightweight, advanced composite protective armor, manufactured by various qualified vendors to be determined, for special operations non-standard civilian vehicles that can be easily installed and repaired in the field by non-technical personnel without the need for special tools or equipment.

The Pentagons interest in putting foreign technologies into the hands of special operators is indicative of an overall procurement shift of even high-profile purchases to European-designed systems, such as the US-101 presidential helicopter and the Armys Light Utility Helicopter . And lets not forget that potentially one of the largest Pentagon programs ever the replacement for the Air Forces KC-135 fleet could net Europes Airbus a more than $100 billion win.

-- Christian

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