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One main reason for having uniforms is so that combatants can
distinguish individuals protected by the laws of war and those who are
allowed to carry weapons. Some individuals in war who carry weapons
and fight back are often not protected by these laws. One other reason
was to prevent army deserters from being able to modify their clothing
to reflect more ordinary civilian clothing. The uniforms themselves
were so distinct in design and style that these deserters could be
easily identified.

Visibility & Camouflage:

The evolution of military uniforms from bright colors (to help in
identification on a battle field) to more camouflaged ones (where they
become virtually indistinguishable from the surrounding landscape) is
a clear indication of the purpose of a uniform. While previously
important to find units in battle, the evolution of warfare has
necessitated the more stealthier aspects of armies and hence more
attention to camouflage.

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