Spetsodezhda

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KGB Border Troops wearing the Spetsodezhda at the Khorgos Soviet-Chinese frontier post.

Spetsodezhda/Спецодежда (English: Special clothes), is a Soviet developed uniform worn initially by the KGB and later by the MVD. It was similar in appearance to the Afghanka, especially the airborne version. It had several styling differences to enable it to be worn as a standalone uniform for field and garrison usage.

Design details[edit]

KGB Border Guards ready for patrol wearing the Spetsodezhda with the original khaki furazhka peaked cap.

The Spetsodezhda was made in a lightweight summer and heavier, lined winter version. Both consisted of a long, loose fitting four pocketed shirt-style jacket with large stand-and-fall collar, epaulettes, exposed buttons, armpit vents and tube-style field trousers with cargo pouches on its thighs. It could be worn with the Polevaia Furazhka field cap which was made from sturdy cotton and featured ear flaps which could be unbuttoned and lowered to protect the ears. This was supplied with the uniform.[1] The Kamuflirovanni Beret camouflaged beret, or the Kamaflirovannaia Furazhka camouflaged peaked cap were also supplied. All were in the KLMK two colour yellow on green camouflage pattern.

The winter model is composed of a jacket, a jacket liner, trousers, their insulated lining and suspenders. The liners are buttoned into their respective garments, and the outer garments can be worn without the liners. The jacket liner bears the fur collar of the jacket, usually in fish fur but occasionally in real fur (on Officer's uniforms). The jacket and trousers are lined with a type of material that helps insulate by trapping warm air, whereas the liners are made of a quilted material similar to the Telogreika Uniform.

Variants[edit]

  • Type I: the initial pattern introduced in 1981–1982. The collar tabs, shoulder straps and arm patches were the same grass green ones as worn on the khaki uniforms.[1][2]
  • Type II: Worn by both the KGB and MVD troops (RSN, Osnaz, ChOn and ODON). This design is closely based on the airborne Afghanka to include hidden button and subdued collar tabs, shoulder straps and arm patches.[1]
  • Type III: One piece cover-alls with attached hood, open belt loops, a left sleeve pocket and a right hip pocket.[1]

See also[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d Camouflage Uniforms of the Soviet Union and Russis, Dennis Desmond, Schiffer Military History, copyright 1998, ISBN 0-7643-0462-3.
  2. ^ Steven J. Zaloga and James Loop (1985). Soviet Bloc Elite Forces. Elite 5. Osprey Publishing. ISBN 0-85045-631-2.

Sources[edit]

  • Soviet Uniforms and Militaria 1917-1991 by Laszlo Bekesi
  • Inside the Soviet Army Today. Osprey Elite Military History Series No. 12 by Stephen J Zaloga
  • Russia's War in Afghanistan by David Isby
  • Warsaw Pact Ground Forces by David Rottmman