Procurement: May 29, 2004


Although the U.S. Department of Defense has had an FCT (Foreign Comparative Testing) program since 1980, few military items of foreign origin have been accepted. That began to change when SOCOM (Special Operations Command) became part of FCT in 1998. Since then, all fifteen of the items SOCOM evaluated were accepted and purchased. What SOCOM wants, and believes it needs, it gets, no matter where it is sold. SOCOM is currently looking at foreign made 5.56mm rifles to replace the M-4s it is currently using. Several electronic items are under evaluation, as are portable anti-armor weapons. The U.S. Army is trying to get the same authority to look at foreign made equipment, but Congress is reluctant to see this purchasing of foreign military equipment get out of hand. 


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