Video: The Foreign Legion, another French exception

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  • Published on:  Friday, April 27, 2018
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    Shrouded in mystery and prestige, the French Foreign Legion is just as feared by its enemies as it is envied by its allies. The legionnaires come from across the world, prepared to fight for a country that is not even their own. In the Legion, they learn to fight in extreme conditions, live together and work as a team. But who are these soldiers and what motivates them? While embedded with the 13th Half-Brigade of the Foreign Legion in Mali, our reporters found out.
    “The Legion is our home” is the motto of the Foreign Legion, the legendary elite branch of the French Army. Africans, Americans, Asians, Europeans, anyone between 17 and 40 years old can sign up to fight for France.
    The Legion was formed in 1831 and, to this day, inspires fascination. From the very start, it earned a reputation for being an army made up of wanted criminals. Today though, the Legion says entry is forbidden to anyone linked to violent crimes, sexual assault or drug-trafficking.
    However, the Legion still gives a chance to those who want to leave their pasts behind, earn a living and serve in an army with one of the best reputations in the world.
    Only one in five hopefuls makes it through the notoriously tough selection tests and once they’re in, the Legionnaires have to agree to a strict set of rules if they are to stay in. They’re punished if they fail to learn French and misunderstand orders.
    Claire Paccalin and Fanny Allard followed the 13th Half-Brigade of the Foreign Legion at their French base and during a counter-terrorism operation in Mali.
    They spent six days camping out in the desert near the border with Niger to find out how the Legion works and what motivates these men to fight for a country that is not their own.
    Maxime, an 18-year-old Belgian, told them why he quit a carpentry apprenticeship to join the Legion. They spoke to Brandon, an American who drives his comrades crazy by playing country music at the barracks. Then there's Sergeant Giacomo, who started out camera-shy but later opened up about being a Legionnaire.

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  • m b

    m b

     4 hours ago

    So whatever happens to your old identity after you join and do you get it back if you don't make it in the foreign legion.? How would they know you contact anyone outside while as a foreign legion.?

  • Kevin Pope

    Kevin Pope

     19 hours ago

    Quite obvious why France realized it needed foreign troops... they got tired of the French ones running away.

  • Kinji Harma

    Kinji Harma

     2 days ago


  • TheHasanMurat


     2 days ago

    cough DIEN BIEN PHU cough*

  • Matheus M

    Matheus M

     2 days ago

    Join the legion and get 0 benefits.

  • ProjectE1even


     3 days ago

    So these are the Brave Men on the front lines again Islamic fundamentalism.... Heroes in a modern age & not the keyboard type...

  • ProjectE1even


     3 days ago

    Germany had a foreign legion... what was their name again?

  • Daniel Romero

    Daniel Romero

     4 days ago

    Foreign legion, nice name for mercenary.

  • somenath majumder

    somenath majumder

     5 days ago

    Still people glorified Army, killers in the name of patriotism....

  • hmoobmeeka


     5 days ago

    I regret not trying out for the french foreign legion when I was younger

  • pie assassin

    pie assassin

     6 days ago

    6:50 wasn’t expecting a dude from Tennessee

  • missy mason

    missy mason

     7 days ago


  • Ron Lewis

    Ron Lewis

     7 days ago

    "you don't feel like talking to me do you?" "No" haha i love that

  • elias borsov

    elias borsov

     9 days ago

    Their weapons look new and shiny, there isn't a spot of dust on them, my guess is that they didn't fight and the area is not so intense as they describe..

  • mustafa amer

    mustafa amer

     13 days ago

    Who want to be a mercenary this is your perfect legal cover

  • Leonardo Schuh

    Leonardo Schuh

     14 days ago

    De fato muito triste a situação das nossas forças armadas, e a situação que a repórter conta sobre o soldado brasileiro, é desmotivante. Mas com toda certeza, esse quadro ficará muito melhor e será muito mais valorizado logo em breve.

  • Quattro 4

    Quattro 4

     15 days ago

    That skinny broad lol.

  • Mike FsK6

    Mike FsK6

     16 days ago

    Fighting for France all around the world. Yeah fuckers, try defend your own country first.

  • Mike J

    Mike J

     17 days ago

    I have no family member left, I am ready to die.

  • Violence of Action

    Violence of Action

     19 days ago

    Any Canadians in the legion?