Feeds

French Colonial Marines to get Aliens medic-datalink

Nukez-les de l'orbite - c'est la seule manière d'être sûr

Mobile application security vulnerability report

Who remembers the movie Aliens, in which Sigourney Weaver and a team of spacegoing marines got stuck into the eponymous acid-blooded homicidal monsters? Anyone who does will be pleased to hear that one of the cunning technologies of the fictional Colonial Marines will soon be available to the French army.

The particular tech trick in question is the datalinking of vital-signs medical telemetry from sensors worn by troops back to the command post. Just as the ineffectual Lieutenant Gorman was able to watch his men flatlining as the Aliens slaughtered them, soon French officers may be able to monitor their troops' heart rate, blood pressure, etc, in real time - as early as 2015.

The capability is expected to be delivered as part of the second batch of FELIN - Fantassin à Équipements et Liaisons Intégrés, the new French digi-soldier suit. Revelation of the Colonial-Marines aspect came in a defence-procurement briefing yesterday, reported by the Ares blog at Aviation Week.

Colonel Jerome Perrin of the French defence purchasing bureau was apparently very enthusiastic about the biotelemetry capability. However, Ares also quotes an unnnamed former Foreign Legion officer as being bluntly dismissive.

"The [defence procurement agency], they can have their dreams, but the reality is that a remote command post should better not have detailed information about who is shot and what are the injuries," growled the ex-Legionnaire.

"Decisions... should be taken by the platoon leader, by the commander who is physically present in the fight. There are many examples of battles that were won against all odds because of determination and good judgement by the officers and NCOs on the ground," he added.

The former Legion officer also gave it as his opinion that the glorious massacre of Camerone* would never have been possible if the Legionnaires in Mexico had all been medically datalinked.

It could be seen as consistent with French military policy, of course, to hook up the mainstream French forces - among whom deaths would be a political issue at home - but not the expendable foreigners of the Legion. The French General de Negrier once famously said to a Legion unit "you men have joined the Legion in order to die, and I am sending you where one does".

The use of medically-capable FELIN would obviously be especially appropriate for the Troupes de Marine, aka Troupes Coloniales in the past. The Aliens scriptwriters would seem to have had them in mind when dreaming up their Colonial Marines.

America's Land Warrior equivalent of FELIN has officially been canceled, but is nonetheless seeing service in Iraq. However, it has no medical sensors. Neither does the UK's FIST programme, at the moment. ®

Bootnote

*The battle of Camerone is the keystone of the Foreign Legion legend, like Trafalgar for the Royal Navy. It occurred during the 19th-century French imperial intervention in Mexico, when a group of less than seventy legionnaires battled 2,000 Mexicans in a heroic last stand and were wiped out almost to the last man.

Camerone Day is celebrated every year in traditional Legion style, by getting paralytically drunk and singing about blood sausage. The famous wooden hand of Capitaine Danjou, Legion commander at Camerone, is reverently displayed.

Mobile application security vulnerability report

More from The Register

next story
UK government officially adopts Open Document Format
Microsoft insurgency fails, earns snarky remark from UK digital services head
Major problems beset UK ISP filth filters: But it's OK, nobody uses them
It's almost as though pr0n was actually rather popular
HP, Microsoft prove it again: Big Business doesn't create jobs
SMEs get lip service - what they need is dinner at the Club
ITC: Seagate and LSI can infringe Realtek patents because Realtek isn't in the US
Land of the (get off scot) free, when it's a foreign owner
MPs wave through Blighty's 'EMERGENCY' surveillance laws
Only 49 politcos voted against DRIP bill
Help yourself to anyone's photos FOR FREE, suggests UK.gov
Copyright law reforms will keep m'learned friends busy
EU's top data cops to meet Google, Microsoft et al over 'right to be forgotten'
Plan to hammer out 'coherent' guidelines. Good luck chaps!
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Application security programs and practises
Follow a few strategies and your organization can gain the full benefits of open source and the cloud without compromising the security of your applications.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.