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3 years ago

French Foreign Legion (la Légion étrangère) - Tougher Than the Rest #2of3

friki
French Foreign Legion (la Légion étrangère) - Tougher Than the Rest #2of3
The documentary series looks beyond the myths and brutal reputation of the Legion, portrays the legionnaires' daily life, and reveals the true face of one of the most famous, mysterious and secretive fighting forces in the world.
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The French Foreign Legion is a military service branch of the French Army established in 1831, unique because it was created for foreign nationals willing to serve in the French Armed Forces.

Commanded by French officers, it is also open to French citizens, who amounted to 24% of the recruits in 2007. The Foreign Legion is today known as a unit whose training focuses not only on traditional military skills but also on its strong esprit de corps as its men come from different countries with different cultures. This is a way to strengthen them enough to work as a team. Although it is part of the French Military, it is the only unit of the military that does not swear allegiance to France, but to the Foreign Legion itself.[6] Consequently, training is often described as not only physically challenging, but also very stressful psychologically. French citizenship may be applied for after three years' service. Additionally, any soldier who becomes injured during a battle for France immediately becomes a French citizen under a provision known as "Français par le sang versé" ("French by spilled blood"). As of 2008, members come from 140 countries.

Since 1831, the Legion has suffered the loss of nearly 40,000 men on active service in France, Algeria, Morocco, Tunisia, Madagascar, West Africa, Mexico, Italy, the Crimea, Spain, Indo-China, Norway, Loyada, Syria, Chad, Zaïre, Lebanon, Central Africa, Gabon, Kuwait, Rwanda, Djibouti, Ex-Yugoslavia, Somalia, Republic of Congo, Ivory Coast, Afghanistan, Mali, Sahel and others.
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La Légion étrangère est un corps de l'Armée de terre française disposant d'un commandement particulier. La Légion est également indépendante du point de vue de son recrutement.

Formée en 1831 pour permettre l'incorporation de soldats étrangers dans l'Armée française2, une partie de ses unités a fait partie, jusqu'en 1962, fin de la période coloniale, du 19e corps d'armée, noyau de l'armée d'Afrique3,4,5.

L'engagement à la Légion est réservé aux hommes dont l'âge est compris entre 17 ans et 40 ans (dérogation possible) et a compté depuis sa création et jusqu'en 1963 plus de 600 000 soldats dont une majorité d'allemands, suivi de 3 fois et demie moins d'italiens, puis de belges, mais aussi de français, d'espagnols et de suisses. De nombreuses autres nationalités sont représentées, comme les pays d'Europe de l'Est et les Balkans, majoritaires dans les années 2000. Ce corps d'armée reste, pour la majorité, un moyen d'immigration privilégié afin de changer de vie, d'oublier son passé, de se faire oublier, ou tout simplement de trouver u