A 95-member contingent of the French Foreign Legion will be participating in India's 75th Republic Day parade, where French President Emmanuel Macron will be the Chief Guest.
In an impressive display of military collaboration, the parade will also feature the French Air and Space Force, showcasing two Rafale fighter jets and an Airbus A330 Multi-role Tanker Transport (MRTT) aircraft in the flypast above Kartavya Path.
These will fly alongside the Indian Air Force (IAF)'s contingent of 29 fighter aircraft, 8 transport planes, 13 helicopters, including Rafales, Tejas Mk-1, and Sukhoi Su-30 MKI jets.
Adding to this, six Indian and six Nepali members of the Legion will be taking part in the parade.
As the French Foreign Legion prepares to showcase its prowess in India's Republic Day parade, it's worth delving into the rich history and role of this renowned military unit.
Here is a brief introduction of the Legion:
The French Foreign Legion (Légion étrangère) is a branch of the French Army that was established in 1831. It is a military force that includes volunteers from any country, including France, to serve in France and abroad.
The Legion is made up of 8,000 men and has a reputation of being one the most well trained and professional force of the French Army (Armée de Terre). The Legion includes several specialties, such as — Infantry, Cavalry, Engineers, Airborne troops.
As part of the French Army, the Legion also contributes to NATO forces.
Historically significant in expanding and protecting France's colonial interests, the Legion has now evolved into a versatile and vital component of France's armed forces.
Deployed in some of the most challenging conflict zones, Legionnaires have shown remarkable adaptability and prowess, reflecting their ability to operate in diverse environments from deserts to mountainous terrains.
The Legion has served in various battles, from the harsh deserts of North Africa to the dense jungles of Indochina (Vietnam), and the rugged landscapes of Afghanistan, the Legion has demonstrated exceptional bravery and skill.
With the exceptional performance displayed by the Legion in these vastly different theatres, the Legion remains the preferred unit by the French Army to be sent for overseas service.
Serving in the Legion also opens the door to French citizenship, a major incentive for many recruits. After three years of service, a Legionnaire can apply for citizenship.
Editorial Associate at Swarajya. Writes on Indian Military and Defence.
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