Another Casualty of Afghan War: Velcro

The lowly button does a better job at keeping pockets closed
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 15, 2010 11:50 AM CDT
In this photo taken Thursday July 30, 2009 Army Sgt. Trecorrus Jordan puts his hand sanitizer into his pants pocket after using it at Fort Jackson, S.C.   (AP Photo/Mary Ann Chastain)

(Newser) – Score one for the lowly button: After soldiers complained that space-age Velcro, which got easily clogged with dirt and sand, wasn't effectively keeping their fully-loaded cargo pants pockets closed, the Army began testing alternatives. Come August, soldiers headed to Afghanistan will receive pants outfitted with three buttons per pocket, reports USA Today.

One sergeant summed up the advantage nicely: "Buttons are silent, easy to replace in the field, work just fine in the mud, do not clog up with dirt, and do not fray and disintegrate with repeated laundering." The other upside: The Army will save 96 cents per uniform. The material will still be used on sleeve cuffs and to adhere nameplates and patches.

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