Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Australian Beret Ban

You don't need to be an Einstein to understand that the beret is a much more appropriate headgear to wear in a tank than a slouch hat, but military commanders across the ditch (from me) probably don't crawl into tanks much themselves. 
From September 2010, the beret was banned across the Australian Army (except for the Special Forces) in favour of the traditional slouch hat.
So much for tradition, but it was exactly the opposite reasoning at the end of WWI that turned the Basque beret into a universal army headgear: away with tradition for utility, comfort, practicality and ease. The beret has no brim to get caught or get in the way in an enclosed environment, it protects the head without taking up any room, it's easy to roll up and stuff in your pocket (try that with a slouch hat!) and the black berets of the RAAC are pretty much stain and grease resistant.
And as for the risk of sunburn, maybe have a look at the French Chasseurs Alpins
It sounds like the Aussies are following Big Brother in his sometimes hard to follow reasoning. 
Thanks, Steve


  1. What I cannot comprehend is that the Military Police wear berets for occupational health and safety reasons for themselves and recognition as the berets are red.lets see what legal remifications comes out when a soldier or MP gets injurered from wearing the slouch hat. Interesting.

  2. As a mother of a soldier in Armored,I see it is a disgrace of the government to take away such a vital part of what sets these fine young men apart,they work hard and deserve to be recognized for who they are and the job they do.they are Armored and proud,dont take that from them.In a war situation,Im pretty sure the sun is the least of the real worries.Wake up,powers that be give the boys their berets back.its the Army,not play group.

  3. Often, there's no understanding how the Aussies think!