What to look for
As I stated before, many middle eastern countries used the same patterns of camouflage, which leads to a lot of combinations of patches, ranks, manufacturing quality, etc. Saudi Arabia has the best funded defense force in the Middle East, which means they supply their soldiers with equipment imported from many different countries. It's impossible to explain everything about identifying a uniform all at one time, so whenever I post an example of one, I will go through the details. However, there are simple ways to identify a Saudi uniform without much effort.
What to look for:
When looking at a possible Saudi uniform, you must know what to look for. The easiest part is identifying the rank. Saudi ranks are quite easy to identify, because their style is unique. Here's a small chart of the style of some of their ranks:
So, if you see a rank on a uniform in similar style to those above, you are on your way to identifying it. Also, shoulder board types shown below are another sign that a uniform is Saudi issue. Almost every Saudi shoulder board has that style of Arabic script on the bottom that is hard to miss. The board on the right is a Saudi Officer Cadet, and if you look at the chart on the left, the diagram of an Officer Cadet rank is identical to it.
Another detail on Saudi uniforms is that they have a lot of velcro. Now, this doesn't immediately show the uniform is Saudi, however, as other countries used velcro, but you see a lot of it on uniforms from here. Ranks, name tags, and awards are, depending on the era, seen attached with velcro on Saudi uniforms. If you have combinations of all that said above, you likely have a Saudi uniform.
The Saudi Army utilized a lot of different camouflage uniforms, and I will go over the patterns they used under the "Saudi Camouflage Uniforms" section will be more detailed specifics on each pattern.
You will eventually run into this problem. You've got a nice uniform, except it only has one patch on the shoulder. The patch isn't a rank, but its the unit insignia. These can be a little tough to identify, but once you see a lot of Saudi insignia, they all exhibit a similar style. If you get good at it, one look at that patch and you will know if its Saudi. Here are some Saudi insignia:
Go to the Saudi Patch and Insignia section for more.
The Saudi's were seen wearing a copy of the M1 helmet. It was produced in South Korea or Taiwan and exported to the Saudi Arabian Army during Desert Storm. The U.S. also supplied surplus Mitchell Covers to them, and in photos, it is common to see the tan side being worn out on these helmets. These were seen being worn for a while until being phased out by the kevlar helmet.
How to spot one:
How to spot one:
- Factory applied tan paint
- Light greenish webbing
- Tan plastic liner
- Sticker inside that says R.O.C.