Saturday, July 9, 2011

Régiment des Chasseurs Ardennais

Another military regiment on The Beret Project and for a good reason: as one of only two military units worldwide, the Régiment des Chasseurs Ardennais wear a Basque beret, so with a txortena (or "wick"). 
These berets come in two versions; the economic standard one for soldiers and the luxurious French made Vrai Basque, in the typical green colour of the regiment, with fine lining, embroidered label and leather headband.
The origin of the elite Regiment Chasseurs Ardennais goes back to the necessity to create a corps to guard the eastern border of Belgium from a German attack. On the 10th of march 1933 king Albert the 1st decides to change the name of Regiment 10e de ligne to Régiment des Chasseurs Ardennais (Hunters of the Ardennes), giving the regiment the emblem of the Ardennes (a wild boars head) to wear on their typical green Basque berets.
Photograph ©Guillaume Wautriche
At the beginning of WWII the Division of Chasseurs Ardennais count 35.000 men who get involved in some of the fiercest fighting on Belgian ground. 
These days the Chasseurs's main task is the protection of Belgian sovereignty and participation in peace keeping- and enforcement tasks around the world.
Mobilisation in Houyet, 1939
A web site full loaded with interesting material (in French) and pictures is the site of the Fraternelle C. A. 

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