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Many times, I have gone on a march dead tired and I have been repeating in my head the spirit of March: "A legionnaire will never say that he is tired, until he falls down, he will be the fastest and most resistant body".
How do you feel being a legionnaire?
Being a legionnaire is a source of pride, wearing the chapiri and knowing that you belong to that small percentage of people who have the privilege of wearing it is a very fulfilling feeling, you experience many incredible things and in the end everything that one experiences in the legion ends up being anecdotes that one will be able to count when he is a grandfather.
What do you have to do to earn the chapiri?
A ufal (Legion training and adaptation unit) or uil is made, depending on whether you are on the peninsula or in the autonomous cities, which is a period of adaptation to legionary life, there they tighten the nuts more than in the cefot , which by the way, they do not press anything, a lot of light step, field instruction, they teach you our customs and traditions, our Legionary Creed, the combat table is practiced a lot and they mess around a lot with weapons that one later finds in the companies.
What does it feel like to win the chapiri?
Well, you feel that something you have wanted for years has finally arrived, you feel that you have entered the legionary family, you feel that you are part of the ranks of one of the best units in the world, you feel that you have the sacred oath not to abandon no man in the field until they all perish.
Do you recommend someone who has just entered as a first unit?
Yes, if what you want is to be an operative, live in the legion, and train well as a soldier.
Do you think it is a drive to stay long or is it a lot of physical exhaustion?
In my opinion, it is a unit to get tough, learn and immerse yourself in the legionnaire spirit, however, the same thing happens as with the rest of the operational units: a lot of physical work, maneuvers, continuous marches... If you intend to live well or work little is not your place, studying is difficult (not impossible).
How is the day to day?
Sport (almost always running), shower, quick breakfast and we change fields for daily instruction. Combat in urbanized areas, tccc, conventional combat, we learn to use all the weapons that an infant has within his reach such as the mg42, mg4, ag36...
How are the maneuvers?
There are several types, vehicular maneuvers where we drive almost all the time, we disembark and whatever happens: storming a position, storming a town...
There are kicking manoeuvres, there are no combat vehicles and we go everywhere, they are tanning maneuvers, a lot of night movement, brave dads, infiltrations.... And obviously conventional and population combat.
Then there are more didactic maneuvers, to learn about ieds with sappers for example.
Do you think it is a unit in which you can study?
By being able you can study everywhere, although it is true that it is more difficult than in a less operative unit, but if you organize yourself in the end you study. I know a lieutenant who was a legionnaire, a legionnaire who is a sergeant and I know several who today are civil guards, everything is to put on, but you have to be very committed to the study to achieve it
What does the boyfriend of death mean to you?
From the heart, for me it is a song that we sing to our fallen, it bothers me as well as the rest of the legionary knights of Spain when civilians, gunmen, civil guards sing it like that mockingly, because it is a song that many legionnaires have sung with tears in the eyes, is the maximum expression of respect to our fallen ones who wait for us above.
What does the Legionary Creed mean to you?
The lifestyle of La Legión, everything that is done in La Legión is based on it. Absolutely everything. Many times, I have gone on a march dead tired and I have been repeating in my head the spirit of March: "A legionnaire will never say that he is tired, until he falls down, he will be the fastest and most resistant body". And so in all things of my work, each spirit of the creed has a place in our daily journey. And also in civil life, the creed makes the way of the gentleman.
Approximately how often do you go off mission in the legion?
It comes out a lot, what happens is that different companies and flags come out. Almost every year they are dating. Note that we have 4 thirds, a sapper flag, a HQ flag, an artillery group, a cavalry group, a logistics group... Every year someone catches something.
Is it a unit where shooting, combat tactics, etc. are practiced regularly?
Yes, yes, the manuals are updated, and we try to mechanize all the procedures we have so that in a real situation they come out instinctively, a lot is thrown away, a lot of military training is done. Normally four days a week for military training and one for maintenance, it's usually like that.
How are the controls?
There is everything, the corporals here have a lot of power, seniority is a degree at the end... Their experience is what reinforces the training of the legionnaires, non-commissioned officers, the truth is that the ones I have met personally are very competent and very professional . The officers are the ones who direct the sections, companies and flags, often to improve their training they do maneuvers only as commands, they attend many courses and training sessions to be able to instruct the legionnaires.
How can you enter the BOEL?
You have to go to the special operations course, to enter you have to pass some tests and then endure the course, finally in order of rank you choose the BOEL and that's it. Said like that, it sounds easy, but it is not a path that anyone can walk.
Do the controls let you use material that is not provided?
It depends. There are flags that yes others that no. It depends on the Lieutenant Colonel on duty. In what is the first line, you do not put any problems, now the issue of plate holders, helmet... Depending on the flag and company. There are companies where they let them, others where they don't. The weapon, if you ask your boss for permission and he authorizes it, you can put toys on it.
What is the most operational flag?
There is none as such but if it is true that the most operative are the infantry, we are always on maneuvers or doing training.
What do you do throughout the year? Approximate calendar of what is done each year in the legion
Well, it depends on the objective of that year, a year of normal instruction is not the same as a year of high school (in a high school real situations are simulated and prepared in a mission).
A normal year always starts the same and ends the same, a high-intensity season (maneuvers, marches, continued, prolonged...) and for the summer a low-intensity period begins where the CIA facilities are improved, the armament or any task that is entrusted.
How do you live on September 20 and October 12?
September 20 is our anniversary, it is lived with the greatest intensity that you can imagine, we open the door of our barracks so that relatives can come and enjoy the day with us, it is a very important date, the act is prepared with great precision and You live with a lot of passion. October 12 is lived as any Spaniard should, with pride and satisfaction of being what we are.
What does a person need to be a good legionnaire?
The first thing is to want to be, that is the most important thing and then, what is typical for any unit of the legionnaire style, a good physique, a good moral formation, a great vocation for service and a camaraderie that is as strong within the base as outside. A lot of attitude and a lot of desire to want to be the best legionnaire in the country. That guarantees you to be a good legionnaire.
Do you want to give any advice to finish the interview?
Whoever wants to be a Legionary Knight should fight for it, let no one tell you that you are useless, or that you are not going to arrive, if I have arrived, anyone can, you just have to want to be and work for it, you can be whatever you want if you really work it. Whoever sows something reaps it, so the future legionnaires who sow the chapiri seed from today so that in the future they can reap its fruit.
Ha dicho toda la verdad sobre esta familia, hay altos y bajos, penas y alegrías pero siempre hay algún compañero que en esos momentos te dice alguna tontería y te saca una sonrisa. Es una gran unidad pero lo más importante es sentirte lleno con el chapiri por qué eso es lo que va a inclinar la balanza en los malos momentos. En La legión caben todos pero no todos valen…
Un cuerpo fuerte cuenta pero una mente dura es lo principal.
Me ha parecido correctísima la entrevista y las repuestas, cada uno somos un mundo y a cada persona según las circunstancias, estas experiencias les pueden sentar mal o peor y acompañarles toda la vida.
Magníficos profesionales. Con vosotros al fin del mundo.