I am an infantry officer and fully appreciate the need for better pads. I see my Marines taking their hands off their weapons and playing with their kevlars all the time, and the first chance they get to pop tops, they take it. I also noticed on your homepage a plea to have people speak up and get the pads we are issued changed. Believe me, people have spoken up on this account and many others concerning the equipment and gear we use. Marines everywhere complain about the pads, and occasionally the officers complain as well. The problem is it takes more than Lieutenants to sway these things. I would suggest compiling your comments and requests for these pads and submitting them with a statement summarizing the trends. If there is a way to demonstrate that IED, and ballistic protection remain the same, it would be even more irrefutable.
The bottom line is the people who make these decisions don’t wear our gear, and don’t patrol and stand post in 100 plus degree weather so they write off the complaints as standard bitching (excuse the language). They know that we will always find something to complain about, which is true. As a result, they look to what they know; American sentiment is very casualty adverse, and the ridiculously uncomfortable and burdensome PPE we wear minimizes severe trauma. They cannot quantify the argument that discomfort equals lax security, degrades endurance and speed with respect to the enemy. They can’t quantify that with all the PPE we are forced to carry X lbs of water extra to account for exhaustion and heat which then slows us down more.. There are too many variables.