Former defense chief: Kadriorg guard uniform change not cause for alarm

The new, DPM-style uniforms worn by the Kadriorg guard of honor.
The new, DPM-style uniforms worn by the Kadriorg guard of honor. Source: Siim Lõvi /ERR

A recent switch from parade uniform to disruptive pattern material field dress for Estonian Defense Forces (EDF) personnel forming up the official guard at Kadriorg, seat of the head of state, is no cause for concern, Reform MP Ants Laaneots says.

Lanneots, a former EDF commander who reached the rank of general, told ERR that: "I've been to 57 different countries, and can say uniforms varyfrom country to country. It depends on tastes in that country. In Israel, for example, everything is field dress, but then again there is a state of war in that country."

The change was instigated on June 1 without fanfare, and recently became subject of media attention and speculation that it may have been related to defense budget cuts carried out as part of the government's state budget strategy for the next few years, announced in spring.

EDF General Staff spokesperson Taavi Karotamm denied this was the case, adding that it had been made at the behest of armed forces commander Lt Gen. Martin Herem, and had been in the pipeline for over a year.

The parade uniforms formerly worn by the president's Kadriorg guard of honor, in a photo taken in early 2020. Source: Annika Haas

Ants Laaneots, who retired as EDF commander 10 years ago and was elected as an MP for the first time in 2015, said that the DPM-style uniform had plenty to merit it.

"The parade uniforms were made along Soviet or even Tsarist-era design lines. I have worn them myself, and they are uncomfortable," he said, adding that replacing and updating EDF rifles could be an additional step.


Editor: Andrew Whyte

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