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Army Orders Soldiers to Shed Privately Owned Dragon Skin Body Armor
DefenseWatch ^ | 01-14-06 | Nathaniel R. Helms

Posted on 01/15/2006 9:33:25 AM PST by Bobibutu

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1 posted on 01/15/2006 9:33:29 AM PST by Bobibutu
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To: Bobibutu
The soldier reiterated Friday's reports that any soldier who refused to comply with the order and was subsequently killed in action "could" be denied the $400,000 death benefit provided by their SGLI life insurance policy as well as face disciplinary action.

Give that dead man 30 days in the cooler!!

2 posted on 01/15/2006 9:35:31 AM PST by coloradan (Failing to protect the liberties of your enemies establishes precedents that will reach to yourself.)
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To: Bobibutu

There's something about this that doesn't sound right. Unless I see the orders, I'm not going to accept this as fact. It's all hearsay and second or third hand.

I will consider this a non-story until the orders are produced, in writing.


3 posted on 01/15/2006 9:37:35 AM PST by MineralMan (godless atheist)
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To: coloradan

I wouldnt give a damn what the troops are wearing. As long as they were safer.


4 posted on 01/15/2006 9:38:43 AM PST by Armedanddangerous (Master of Sinanju (Emeritus))
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To: MineralMan

ping


5 posted on 01/15/2006 9:38:55 AM PST by vrwc0915 ("Necessity is the plea of every infringement of human freedom. It is the argument of tyrants,)
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To: MineralMan
"Currently nine U.S. generals stationed in Afghanistan are reportedly wearing Pinnacle Dragon Skin body armor, according to company spokesman Paul Chopra. Chopra, a retired Army chief warrant officer and 20+-year pilot in the famed 160th "Nightstalkers" Special Operations Aviation Regiment (Airborne), said his company was merely told the generals wanted to "evaluate" the body armor in a combat environment. Chopra said he did not know the names of the general officers wearing the Dragon Skin. "

I dunno...that sounds pretty believable to me. (sarcasm)
6 posted on 01/15/2006 9:41:56 AM PST by raynearhood ("America is too great for small dreams." - Ronald Reagan, speech to Congress. January 1, 1984.)
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To: Armedanddangerous

Maybe the officer's attitude is that those vests don't make them safer. (I don't have any opinion one way or the other.) It does seem kind of boorish on the part of the brass, however.


7 posted on 01/15/2006 9:42:14 AM PST by coloradan (Failing to protect the liberties of your enemies establishes precedents that will reach to yourself.)
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To: Bobibutu

I do not believe this story.

What officer would ever issue an order that states an insurance policy would not be paid? That is crazy.


8 posted on 01/15/2006 9:42:43 AM PST by Radix (Welcome home 3 ID!)
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To: Bobibutu
Mom should be calling anyone in the MSM who will listen.

This piece is from Hackworth's outfit and I don't know if it is for real, but if it is, it stinks.

9 posted on 01/15/2006 9:45:45 AM PST by Anti-Bubba182
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To: MineralMan

I'm not going to accept this as fact." So....you would not want your son wearing non-issue armor if DOD said their gear (by definition older and cheaper, from lowest bidder) was as good, or almost as good, maybe; but no matter, orders is orders?


10 posted on 01/15/2006 9:48:39 AM PST by diogenes ghost
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To: raynearhood

Yeah. Nobody's identified. Nobody knows who said what, when. If orders were issued, let's see them.

After all, Hillary's saying about the same thing. I don't believe her, either.


11 posted on 01/15/2006 9:48:47 AM PST by MineralMan (godless atheist)
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To: Bobibutu

If this new effort to limit alternative body armour is real, it would seem as if the main contractor had promise of exclusivity in the business agreement with the Army.

Tell you what Army leadership, if someone is going to fight for me over there, you give him first choice in body armour. If the guy is willing to put his money out to protect himself, then STFU and let him do his job.

Just damn! The guys are putting their lives on the line and the Army wants them to wear what they consider to be inferior armour.

That's just bull-s--t, if true.

If not true, I wish the Army would corner the idiot that started this rumour and kick their arse.


12 posted on 01/15/2006 9:49:42 AM PST by DoughtyOne (01/11/06: Ted Kennedy becomes the designated driver and moral spokesperson for the Democrat party.)
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To: Bobibutu

This is so much like the government. Dear God sometimes I wish a rock from heaven would just come and squash them all. They are bugs disguised as human beings. Can't do anything without government approval because everyone knows how fn competent the government is. We so deserve to be destroyed and oppressed for our acceptance of such crap.


13 posted on 01/15/2006 9:49:42 AM PST by Ma3lst0rm (Sometimes believing what you are seeing is the greatest challenge.)
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To: Radix
I do not believe this story.

What officer would ever issue an order that states an insurance policy would not be paid? That is crazy.

Some REMF who has spent his whole career in procurement in the Pentagon and has his future tied up in slelcting the current armor.

So9

14 posted on 01/15/2006 9:50:26 AM PST by Servant of the 9 (Trust Me)
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To: Bobibutu

http://www.pinnaclearmor.com/body-armor/sov.php


15 posted on 01/15/2006 9:51:24 AM PST by shooter223 (the government should fear the citizens......not the other way around)
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To: diogenes ghost

"I'm not going to accept this as fact." So....you would not want your son wearing non-issue armor if DOD said their gear (by definition older and cheaper, from lowest bidder) was as good, or almost as good, maybe; but no matter, orders is orders?"

Look. You're not paying attention. I'm saying that I don't believe any such orders not to wear the other armor were ever issued. I don't believe that crap about generals wearing this better armor, either.

This sounds like a crapola story to me. Hackworth's stuff is often bullwhack. Show me the orders that prohibit the wearing of this armor. Show me where it says that the insurance won't pay off.

The story smells.


16 posted on 01/15/2006 9:51:39 AM PST by MineralMan (godless atheist)
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To: Bobibutu
I would love to see the results of a law suit brought by a soldiers estate on such a ruling. Pinnacles body armor is superior.The Army has not kept up with development:

See: defensereview.com/modules.php?name=News&file=article&sid=490

17 posted on 01/15/2006 9:53:18 AM PST by Candor7 (Into Liberal Flatulence Goes the Hope of the West)
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To: Bobibutu

If true; and that is a big "if", I would like to see the hide ripped off the idiot who issued the order.


18 posted on 01/15/2006 9:53:19 AM PST by ARCADIA (Abuse of power comes as no surprise)
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To: MineralMan
"Several months ago DefenseWatch began receiving anecdotal reports from individual soldiers that they were being forced to remove all non-issue gear while in theater"

This is a matter of individual commanders, not the Army as a whole. I was in Iraq until July of last year. My Brigade fell under the control of two divisions. Both division commanders, although insisting on all soldiers wearing the Army issued Body Armor (with additions--and we all had the Body Armor, at least, everyone that came into contact with while in theater), they were lax, even encouraging, on the issue of additional, "unauthorized" non-issue items. We had a heyday on Ranger Joe's .com getting more comfortable, easier to use ammo pouches, weapons slings, gloves, and ballistic eye wear (shock resistant sunglasses-oakleys among the most popular.) My Company commander was probably the poster boy for wearing store bought "tactical" items.
19 posted on 01/15/2006 9:54:35 AM PST by raynearhood ("America is too great for small dreams." - Ronald Reagan, speech to Congress. January 1, 1984.)
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To: Bobibutu

I think this boils down to the same thing in civilian life when an employer threatens to hold a paycheck from a worker untill they comply or payroll deduct damages that an employee accidently makes. They can threaten it but they can not enforce it.


20 posted on 01/15/2006 9:55:40 AM PST by eastforker (Under Cover FReeper going dark(too much 24))
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To: Bobibutu
If we want to make our troops safer, make them warriors again and not political troops.

IN other words - turn them loose and let them clean up the place. Iran too.

21 posted on 01/15/2006 9:55:41 AM PST by llevrok (Drink your beer, damnit! There are people in Africa sober!.)
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To: Bobibutu

This armor controversy smells like a Democrat National Committee talking point.

Sure, the study said Marines get hurt in places where armor does not cover. That means the armor stops a lot of the hits.

The trade off with armor is weight and mobility. Our Marines and other troops in a fire fight live because of mobility as well as armor. If they are too weighed down, they lose mobility. Also, a troop tired after humping heavy armor and gear is a troop not on top of his game when the fighting begins.

I believe the military and Pentagon are doing all humanly possible to help the troops on the ground and DNC attacks on the conduct of the war are suspect.


22 posted on 01/15/2006 9:57:19 AM PST by RicocheT
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To: MineralMan

I believe that any and all DOD elements would be VERY hesitant to bar the use of any product that would enhance surviveability, given the beating they have taken over body armor and similar sensational issues for quite some time now.


23 posted on 01/15/2006 9:59:17 AM PST by Vn_survivor_67-68
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To: Bobibutu

"and was subsequently killed in action "could" be denied the $400,000 death benefit provided by their SGLI life insurance policy as well as face disciplinary action. "

LOL. just exactly what kind of "disciplinary action" are you going to give a soldier that is dead?


24 posted on 01/15/2006 9:59:26 AM PST by Annie5622 (Democrats DO have a plan! They apparently plan to stay stupid.)
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To: MineralMan

Have to agree, this just doesn't make sense.


25 posted on 01/15/2006 10:00:58 AM PST by OldFriend (The Dems enABLEd DANGER and 3,000 Americans died.)
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To: Bobibutu

If this story were true, it would have been all over the Sunday morning talk shows. If it were just a good rumor it wouold have been all over the Sunday morning talk hows.

This is just a piss poor rumor.


26 posted on 01/15/2006 10:01:51 AM PST by kempo
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To: Anti-Bubba182
Once Hackworth's name is introduced into the story, my radar went off!

The man may be dead but his attacks on our military continue on.

27 posted on 01/15/2006 10:01:57 AM PST by OldFriend (The Dems enABLEd DANGER and 3,000 Americans died.)
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To: Servant of the 9
Some REMF who has spent his whole career in procurement in the Pentagon and has his future tied up in slelcting the current armor.

Or some REMF who will see his plans to become a highly paid employee/consultant to the armor vendor go up in smoke if certain minimum procurement targets are not met, due to troops buying their own rather than asking for the vendor's armor being issued to them

28 posted on 01/15/2006 10:02:34 AM PST by SauronOfMordor (A planned society is most appealing to those with the hubris to think they will be the planners)
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To: Bobibutu
Sounds like a turf war, between manufactures. If the Dragon Skin is pr oven better, the other one looses their monopoly. I say that all manufactures should have their stuff available to the troops.
29 posted on 01/15/2006 10:02:37 AM PST by Exton1
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To: Vn_survivor_67-68

"I believe that any and all DOD elements would be VERY hesitant to bar the use of any product that would enhance surviveability, given the beating they have taken over body armor and similar sensational issues for quite some time now."

I'll tell you what I believe. I believe that "Defense Watch" is an unreliable publication. I believe that it was unreliable under Hackworth's leadership, and I believe it's even worse right now.

The "news" story here has no named sources, except for the spokesman for the company that makes this non-issue armor. No sources. No copy of these "orders." I'm not buying it until I see some real information, not "someone said," and that sort of nonsense.

Finally, the insurance these guys have is not from the government. It done by private companies. The DOD can't dictate the terms of the insurance. They're right there in the policies. That's one of the things that smells like three-day-old chicken in the garbage can.

Until some documents are produced, this is not a news story.


30 posted on 01/15/2006 10:03:16 AM PST by MineralMan (godless atheist)
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To: Bobibutu
Let's see, who would plant a story like this, and of course not supply any names? (how convenient) The makers of this "dragon skin" maybe?
And who determined it is safer? The Military contracts body armor to be made to certain specs and supplied. Could this be a story by a disgruntled manufacturer who lost out on a bid? Solders shouldn't be wearing something that they may THINK is better, but actually isn't. Something stinks about this story. I guess we will find out when someone from the military with the authority to speak on it speaks. Don't hold your breath for media to print the story.
31 posted on 01/15/2006 10:03:43 AM PST by Nathan Zachary
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To: RicocheT

I smell a fabricated scandal cooked up by
Bush haters. Next week... the truth will
will be uncovered by diligent bloggers.


32 posted on 01/15/2006 10:04:14 AM PST by Jo Nuvark (Those who bless Israel will be blessed, those who curse Israel will be cursed. Gen 12:3)
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To: shooter223


The website contains information that they have a GSA contract, that tells me...this story is bogus.


33 posted on 01/15/2006 10:04:46 AM PST by in hoc signo vinces ("Houston, TX...a waiting quagmire for jihadis.")
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To: MineralMan
I've got to agree with you. When someone produces this order, then I'll raise hell.

If such an order exists, I want to see who signed it.

Then I want to see that idiot shipped to a line unit in Iraq wearing standard GI body armor and standard GI everything else.

But until someone can produce an actual order signed by someone 'very high up' I'll look at this story with a jaundiced eye.

L

34 posted on 01/15/2006 10:04:59 AM PST by Lurker (You don't let a pack of wolves into the house just because they're related to the family dog.)
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To: Bobibutu
This very much strikes me as an ad campaign for DragonSkin body armor.

Create controversy, make the claim that the body armor is so much superior that troops are willing to pay big bucks to get and use it, make the unsupported claim that generals are using it. In other words, a perfect advertisement.

Did you notice how much they stressed the "The Brand", while the brand is totally unnecessary to the story!
35 posted on 01/15/2006 10:07:20 AM PST by marktwain
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To: RicocheT

"I believe the military and Pentagon are doing all humanly possible..." Both are huge, slow, and ponderous in procurement. Remember the Humvee armor dust-up? Took a lot of guys in the field making their own armor, others getting killed, and lots of bitching before the DOD finally reacted in a meaningful way. In any pissing match like this, think of it as your son against a paper pusher in DC, going to lunch with reps of armor mfgrs.


36 posted on 01/15/2006 10:09:09 AM PST by diogenes ghost
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To: Bobibutu

BTTT


37 posted on 01/15/2006 10:09:40 AM PST by Fiddlstix (Tagline Repair Service. Let us fix those broken Taglines. Inquire within(Presented by TagLines R US))
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To: OldFriend
It is less in my mind because of the source. Hackworth and his people always take the word of those who complain about the military, but what they said could still be true.

I would like to hear more. This is the kind of flap that makes MSM salivate. If this is true I expect they will jump on it, particularly the angle of the Generals getting this armor in Afganistan.

If there is any truth to this, I hope the ones making this policy get roasted.

38 posted on 01/15/2006 10:10:55 AM PST by Anti-Bubba182
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To: marktwain

Not knowing if the story is true or not........I have to disagree with your comment that the brand is not germain to the story. It's everything to the story.


39 posted on 01/15/2006 10:13:56 AM PST by OldFriend (The Dems enABLEd DANGER and 3,000 Americans died.)
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To: Bobibutu

And an additional $50,000.00 fine for any dead soldier caught with a "lucky rabbit's foot" on his keychain. Puh-leeze!


40 posted on 01/15/2006 10:14:28 AM PST by Solamente
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To: marktwain

Indeed. Just as in PR "news releases," the brand name is mentioned in almost every paragraph. This isn't a story, it's an ad.


41 posted on 01/15/2006 10:14:44 AM PST by JennysCool (Non-Y2K-Compliant)
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To: Bobibutu
I have not read all the responses to this post. In any case, if my privately purchased body armour impresses me more than the issued gear I would wear it regardless of what my command structure told me.

Let them suck an egg through the hole where I take a round to the lung, sucking in and out on the field for ten minutes before I die.
42 posted on 01/15/2006 10:15:56 AM PST by mmercier (die thou unheard, tears unshed)
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To: Annie5622
"and was subsequently killed in action "could" be denied the $400,000 death benefit provided by their SGLI life insurance policy as well as face disciplinary action. " I've heard that you could be denied SGLI payment and VA benefits in an off duty situation such as be killed while driving drunk or not wearing a seat belt during off duty hours....After an investigation and a "in the line of duty determination". I can't see how a soldier in a combat zone killed by hostile fire could be categorized in such a way.
43 posted on 01/15/2006 10:16:53 AM PST by Wristpin ("The Yankees have decided to buy every player in Baseball....")
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To: Bobibutu

Have a priest bless the Dragon Skin armor and tell the Army that it is a religious item.


44 posted on 01/15/2006 10:17:01 AM PST by muir_redwoods (Free Sirhan Sirhan, after all, the bastard who killed Mary Jo Kopechne is walking around free)
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To: Bobibutu

They also have to leave the sawed-off shotguns at home. This is not a citizens' army where everybody beings his own weapons. That would be the militia. This army is an institution of the state.


45 posted on 01/15/2006 10:17:06 AM PST by RightWhale (pas de lieu, Rhone que nous)
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To: diogenes ghost
From an email I received:
 
Army Sending Added Armor to Iraq Units (NYT 1/12/06)

Army Sending Added Armor to Iraq Units
 
By MICHAEL MOSS
Published: January 12, 2006

WASHINGTON, Jan. 11 - Army officials said Wednesday that they had decided to send additional body armor to Iraq to protect soldiers from insurgents' attacks.

Picture removed
Maj. Greg Paul of the Army in a complete set of armor Wednesday after a Senate briefing on protecting troops.

The ceramic plates now worn by most members of the military shield just some of the upper body from bullets and shrapnel, and the Army said it would buy plates that would extend this protection to the sides of soldiers. The officials spoke after a closed session of the Senate Armed Services Committee, held after The New York Times reported last week that a Pentagon study had found that extra armor could have saved up to 80 percent of the marines who died in Iraq from upper body wounds.

In at least 74 of the 93 fatal wounds that were analyzed, bullets and shrapnel struck the marines' sides, shoulders or areas of the torso where the protective plates did not reach.

The Marine Corps, which commissioned the study in December 2004, began buying side plates in September for its 26,000 troops in Iraq. Army procurement officials said they began studying a similar move last summer after receiving requests from troops in Iraq, but were hampered by the need to supply a much larger force of 160,000 individuals.

The Army had begun supplying small quantities of side plates to soldiers much earlier in the war through its Rapid Equipping Force. Armor Works of Tempe, Ariz., which is making the plates for the marines, said it shipped 250 sets in November 2003.

Another manufacturer, the Excera Materials Group of Columbus, Ohio, said that since late 2004 it had shipped 1,000 sets of side plates to Special Forces personnel, the Air Force and individual units that used their own procurement money to buy the armor.

Citing security concerns, the Army has in recent days urged armor contractors not to disclose information about their work, even if the information is not classified, industry officials said.

"Neither you nor any of your employees are authorized to release to anyone outside your organization any unclassified information, regardless of medium, pertaining to any part of your contract," says a letter from an Army research and procurement unit that The Times obtained.

In Congress on Wednesday, Army and Marine officials defended their efforts to procure additional armor, saying they had to weigh the benefits of additional plates against adding weight and restricting mobility. Citing those concerns, Marine officials said last week that they remained reluctant to buy shoulder plates or larger plates for the chest and back.

"This is a continuous evolution," Maj. Gen. Stephen M. Speakes, the Army director of force development, said after the Senate briefing.

46 posted on 01/15/2006 10:17:06 AM PST by Wolverine (A Concerned Citizen)
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To: shooter223

I thought the whole basis of Hillary's objections (apart from cosmetic political posturing) were that rounds could enter through the armhole/shoulder area. The 'Dragon Skin' armor at the link clearly has the same configuration.


47 posted on 01/15/2006 10:18:45 AM PST by Riley ("What color is the boathouse at Hereford?")
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To: RicocheT

You may be right. They were showing this armor on some models the other day on TV and I thought it made them look bulky and less mobile.


48 posted on 01/15/2006 10:21:31 AM PST by AUsome Joy
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To: MineralMan
I don't know about that. It's not that unprecedented. I read an account of LOH operations in Vietnam. There was a
standing order that crews had to wear the ceramic breastplate insert, for instance, iirc.

For some unremembered reason, some proportion preferred to forego the additional protection, necessitating the order.

In the current circumstance, it could be anything from non "certified" body armor/insurance bureaucracy, Interceptor
screaming to either DoD or US Reps in the districts of their factories, or even Interceptor's competitors making waves.

Maybe Linda Daschle is a lobbyist for one of the companies. She doesn't do the country or taxpayers any favors. She
gets paid to push bad deals or bad products on the country.

49 posted on 01/15/2006 10:39:46 AM PST by Calvin Locke
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To: MineralMan

"I don't believe that crap about generals wearing this better armor, either"

Like you, I don't know about the veracity of this story. BUT, from my experience as a staff officer, I can tell you firsthand that generals frequently get to try out the new gear long before it's even procured, let alone issued.
As to the orders to the soldiers about body armor: the one thing that makes it plausible is the way it's enforced: not by the UCMJ, but by a threat that your SGLI "may not cover" your death. That's BS, but to a young man in harm's way, scary. Because of this, I doubt that it's an official "order;" more likely something like a policy guidance. Which, if true, stinks; and is probably rooted in a desire for manufacturer exclusivity (as someone already mentioned.)


50 posted on 01/15/2006 10:40:51 AM PST by ROLF of the HILL COUNTRY (( Terrorism is a symptom, ISLAM IS THE DISEASE!))
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