Circle Winged Armed Dextrochere Insignia of the 2nd Foreign Parachute Regiment worn on a Green Berets. This Insignia is also worn by French Army Metropolitan and Marine Infantry Paratroopers backgrounded by an Anchor on Red Berets.
Command and Logistics Company (CCL)
Admin & Support Company (CAS)
1st Company (1ère Cie)
2nd Company (2ème Cie)
3rd Company (3ème Cie)
4th Company (4ème Cie)
5th Company (5ème Cie)
Recce & Support Company (CEA)
Maintenance Company (5ème CM)
Reserve Unit (6ème Cie)
Compagnie Parachutiste du 3ème Régiment Etranger d'Infanterie
When the idea of paratroopers imposed a visit on the Legion, TAP formations already presented titles of glory on all the lists of battlefields across World War II. Nevertheless, Indochina would really be the crucible in which morale "état d'esprit" and French TAP style would surface. The glory of sacrifice and the nostalgia of a lost cause would entertain the myth.
The battalion dissolved on December 31, 1950; was reconstituted on March 1, 1951 (1er B.E.P, II formation) and was seen participating excessively in combat operations at Cho Ben, on the black river and at Annam. On November 21, 1953; the reconstituted 1er B.E.P was parachuted on Dien Bien Phu. In this gigantic battle, the reconstituted (1er B.E.P, II formation) 1er B.E.P counted 575 killed and missing for the second time in a traditional Foreign Legion battlefield. Amongst the fatal casualties featured Lieutenants Dumont, Boisbouvier and de Stabenrath, killed in between April 1 and May 13 as well as Sergent-Chef Grimault, killed on March 30. Reconstituted for the third time (1er B.E.P, III formation) on May 19, 1954, the 1er B.E.P left Indochina on February 8, 1955. The 1er B.E.P totaled 5 citations at the orders of the armed forces and the fourragère of the colors of the Médaille militaire. The 1st Foreign Parachute Battalion (1er B.E.P, III Formation) became the 1st Foreign Parachute Regiment (1er R.E.P) in Algeria on September 1, 1955.
3ème Bataillon Etranger de Parachutistes, 3ème B.E.P - I, II, III, IV Formations -
Before becoming the 3rd Foreign Parachute Regiment; the 3rd Foreign Parachute Battalion was created on April 1949 at Mascara. The 7th combat company of paratrooper training of the 1st Foreign rejoined Sétif 7 months later, starting November 15, 1949, becoming officially the 3rd Foreign Parachute Battalion (3ème B.E.P). The mission of the 3ème B.E.P was to instruct and form the legionnaires destined to relieve the 1er B.E.P and 2ème B.E.P. While mainly formed and created to instruct the Legionnaires, the 3rd Foreign Paratrooper Battalion (3ème B.E.P) participated in operations of maintaining order in Tunisia from January to June 1952.
Disembarked in Algeria on February 25, 1955, the 1st Foreign Parachute Battalion (1er B.E.P) became the 1st Foreign Parachute Regiment (1er R.E.P) on September 1, 1955. Based at Zéralda, the regiment was composed of one command and support company, one assault company and three combat companies. Quite quickly, operations commenced : Nementchas, Tunisian and Moroccan frontiers, Ouarsenis and de Suez. On November 6, 1956; the regiment disembarked at Port-Fouad and operated quickly along the canal. The progression of the regiment was halted by the ceasefire and the regiment was quick to make way to operate around the mountains of Algeria by December 10.
2ème Bataillon Etranger de Parachutistes, 2ème B.E.P - I, II, III, IV, V Formations
The 2nd Foreign Parachute Battalion (2ème B.E.P) was created on October 1, 1948 by execution of a ministerial prescription dating to March 27, 1948. The combat companies of the 2ème B.E.P were constituted by the 4th Demi-Brigade of the Foreign Legion (4ème D.B.L.E) in Morocco and the depot of the foreign regiments in Sidi-bel-Abbès, were assigned by the 25th Aeroportable Division Element (French: , 25e Elément Divisionnaire Aéroporté, EDAP/25). Compromised of one command company and three combat companies type fusiliers-voltigeurs, the battalion made and cleared way to Oran on January 19, 1949, destined for Indochina. Disembarked in Saïgon on February 9, the battalion was directed to Kep (Cambodia) by land route. On November 1949, the battalion took base in Quan Thé.
The first combat engagements of the 2ème B.E.P have for theatre of operations, Cambodia, Cochinchine and Annam. On October 1950, the 2ème B.E.P was summoned to Tonkin. Reinforced by a heavy mortars company, the battalion engaged in all military operations in the Delta, in Thaï lands, Mékong and the plains of Jarres. The impressive series of combat engagements are earned at the battle of Nghia Lo, colonial route N°6 (RC6), Hoa Binh and the defense of the camp by an airborne operation on Langson. Crowned of a magnificent epoque, the 2ème B.E.P made and cleared way to Dien Bien Phu on April 9 and 10 of 1954 in the middle of the furnace. Following the couter-attack of supporting point "Huguet", lead by a rare determination during the night of the 22 and 23 of April; the 2ème B.E.P and the 1st Foreign Parachute Battalion (1er B.E.P) merged to form a single Foreign Marching Battalion. On May 7, the Foreign Marching Battalion was dissolved and the 2ème B.E.P was recreated by members of the 3rd Foreign Parachute Battalion (3ème B.E.P). On June 1, 1954, the 2ème B.E.P left Asia on November 1, 1955. The colors of the battalion were decorated with 6 citations at the orders of the armed forces and the fourragère of the colors of the Legion of Honor. The losses of the 2ème B.E.P endured 1500 Legion officers, warrant officers, non-commissioned officers and Legionnaires killed along with their "chef de corps", Legion commandantBarthélémy Rémy Raffali leading and heading a traditional Foreign Legion battlefield. Returned to Algeria, the 2nd Foreign Parachute Battalion (2ème B.E.P) became the 2nd Foreign Parachute Regiment (2ème R.E.P) on December 1, 1955.
The insignia of the 2nd Foreign Parachute Battalion was created in 1949, in Cambodia. The battalion insignia represents an Eastern winged Dragon making reference to the original implementation in Asia. The three point triangular shape of the insignia represents the form of an open Parachute; centered by the flag colors of the Legion; and is symbol of the perfection that is expected of the men that may serve this regiment. The battalion was commanded at the time by commandant Solnon (1948-1950).
On December 1, 1955, the 2nd Foreign Parachute Battalion, 2ème B.E.P was enlarged to a full regiment, and was redesignated as the 2nd Foreign Parachute Regiment (French: 2e Régiment étranger de parachutistes, 2e R.E.P). The regiment served throughout the Algerian War and suffered a total of 741 casualties. After the armistice on March 19, 1962 the regiment was moved to Telergma and in September to Mers-el-Kebir. In June 1963 Lt. Col. Caillaud exercised command, regrouped and reformed the R.E.P regiment into an elite para-commando force. In June 1967 the regiment was moved to its current base at Camp Raffalli, Calvi on the island of Corsica. It was assigned to the 11th Division and became part of France's rapid intervention forces.
Chad : (in 1969, Operations Pout, Manta, Sparrowhawk): Elements of the regiment were deployed to Chad in April 1969 as part of a French force to support the government against two rebel forces. Returning at the end of 1970. Individual companies were deployed again in 1978-79 to protect French lives and again in 1984.
Zaire: In May 1978, a force of gendarmes katangais entered the Katanga province of Zaire from Angola and occupied the mining town of Kolwezi. They began to loot the town and kill government soldiers and civilians (including several Belgian and French employees of a mining company). At the request of the government of Zaire, 2 REP was airlifted to Kinshasa and dropped on Kolwezi. The operation was a success and the town was quickly recaptured with minor casualties in the ranks of the paratroopers. Some 120 civilian hostages died in the occupation.
Afghanistan: The regiment partook in various operations from 1960 to 1980, OMLT 2008, GTIA Altor 2010, Red SGTIA 2011 and Operation PAMIR. 2ème REP deployed to Afghanistan from January to July 2010, as part of Task Force "Altor". Two Legionnaires, Pole Konrad Rygiel from 2e R.E.P G.C.P, Slovakian Robert Hutnik from the regiment were killed in action.
The beret insignia of the Foreign Legion Paratroopers of France represents a closed <<winged armed dextrochere>>, meaning a "right winged arm" armed with a sword pointing upwards. The Insignia makes reference to the Patron of Paratroopers. In fact, the Insignia represents <<the right Arm of Saint Michael>>, the Archangel which according to Liturgy is the <<Armed Arm of God>>. This Insignia is the symbol of righteous combat and fidelity to superior missions.
La Légion marche vers le front,
En chantant nous suivons,
Héritiers de ses traditions,
Nous sommes avec elle.
Nous sommes les hommes des troupes d'assaut,
Soldats de la vieille Légion,
Demain brandissant nos drapeaux,
En vainqueurs nous défilerons,
Nous n'avons pas seulement des armes,
Mais le diable marche avec nous,
Ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, ha, car nos aînés de la Légion,
Se battant là-bas, nous emboîtons le pas.
The Croix de Guerre for Theatres of Exterior Operations with 6 palms obtained during the campaigns of the First Indochina War. The 6 palms obtained during the same campaign allows the regiment to wear the red fourragère wearing the ruban colors of the Légion d'honneur, only two regiments (2ème R.E.P & 1er R.C.P) earned this fourragère for participating in military campaigns in Indochina. The 2ème REP has received a second fourragère Valeur Militaire in July 2013
The attribution of the two citations for the same operation theatre confers the right to wear the fourragère with colors of the Croix de la Valeur militaire (as of July, 2013) and the olive colors of the Médaille militaire for the ensemble of the four conferred citations.