ALICE Packs of US Army
Mentioning US army equipment, I believe that everyone is not unfamiliar with the classic ALICE. ALICE is the short name of All Purpose Lightweight Individual Carrying Equipment, US army were issued with the classic ALICE in a large scale after Vietnam War whose service time is almost 20 years from the late 1970s to the early part of this century.
Next let’s look at the ins and outs of ALICE in US army.
M1956 and M1967
Mentioning ALICE, firstly, we must know the two individual equipment M1956 and M1967 US army were issued with which in a large scale during Vietnam War.
For M1956, US army were issued with M1956 during the early stages of Vietnam War. There is a great adjustment on the fixed mode of M1956 by contrast with M1928/1936 of the period of the Second World War.
For M1928/1936, most of the fixed modes are fixing with the help of metal hook or pullover, but metal buckle was adopted in M1956 which directly improved the flexibility of the installation and replacement of equipment.
M1967 was developed for the hot and humid climate of Vietnam. We can say that M1967 is the updated version of M1956. Besides some improvement in the style of equipment, the canvas fabric of M1956 was replaced with the nylon fabric in M1967 whose durability and performance of quick-drying were improved greatly, and there is a significant decline in the net weight of M1967. And part of metal fasteners of M1956 were replaced with the plastic buckle of M1967 in order to improve the corrosion resistance of M1967. So far, US army mainly finished the transition of individual equipment from leather equipment to canvas equipment, from canvas equipment to nylon equipment.
Alice Pack System
After Vietnam War, US army began to promote ALICE as the new style individual equipment. In fact, ALICE does occur in a vacuum which is the updated version of M1967. Nylon fabric were used in all parts of ALICE which are mainly tactical belt, Y type strap, triple assembly M16 magazine bag, compass bag, ration and materials bag, polymer canteen and canteen casing, medical bag, folding engineer shovel, MX-991/U L style flashlight.
There are LC1 and LC2 two versions with ALICE, But the two virsions have not too much difference, only difference reflected in the materials and production process in detail, such as: LC1 use duckbill button tactical belt, whereas LC2 tactical belt buckle instead of nylon.
But the H type strap of M1956/1967 is more comfortable than the Y type strap of ALICE according to the feedback of some soldiers. US army were issued in a large scale with PASGT body armor and helmet while US army were issued with ALICE.
Let’s look at the use case of ALICE.
After Vietnam War, America began to contract strategically from some areas, and the Soviet Union began to damage the interests of America in Caribbean Region as the backyard of America. So US army launched armed invasion into Grenada with a operation whose code name is Operation Urgent Fury in order to against the local pro-the Soviet Union regime in 1983. At that time, the equipment of ground combat forces of US army is in the period of transition the equipment of ground combat force is a mix of the new ALICE and the stock of M1956/M1967 of Vietnam War in which.
America launched armed intervention named Operation Just Cause to Panama in 1989. At that time, US army have been issued with ALICE, M81 four-color BDU, PASGT body armor and helmet in a large scale.
The ground combat forces of US army were issued with ALICE in a large scale during the first Gulf War. For good camouflage in desert environment, US army began to be issued with the six-color DBDU, and camouflage covers with the same color with DBDU were added to PASGT body armor and helmet.
Even to the late 1990s, MOLLE (Modular Lightweight Load Carrying Equipment) began to be promoted by US army, and ALICE began to be replaced by MOLLE progressively.