The Legion Marches

The Legion MarchesHere is a gripping article that appeared in the September, 1946 issue of the U.K. magazine The Wide World (The Magazine for Men).  The Wide World was an odd combination of pulp and slick.  It was printed on much better paper than the pulps and contained mainly true to life adventure articles and stories (travel, hunting, exploration, war, law enforcement, sports, etc.).  It was slightly smaller than pulps in size–both height, width and overall thickness yet had wonderful eye-catching covers that would look good on any adventure fiction pulp.  The magazine ran from 1898 to the end 1965.

This article was written by Leslie J. Smith who was one of three Englishmen serving with the 5th Regiment of the Foreign Legion in Indochina.  Smith provides a first hand account of the fighting between the Japanese occupation forces and the isolated French garrisons in early 1945.  He served in the 3rd Battalion of the 5th Regiment during that unit’s epic rear guard action and forced march on the tails of the French evacuation of personnel into China.   As Smith points out, this was a little known battlefield of WWII yet it involved incredible sacrifice and epic resistance to overwhelming odds.

The Legion Marches

About Jack Wagner

Retired Army.
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3 Responses to The Legion Marches

  1. ricky44nz says:

    Hi Jack.
    Thank you so much for the amazing article. As usual you find the most interesting Legion stories. I am about to post the story with a link to your page to the Legion sites on Facebook that I am a member of. Brilliant work and thanks again. If you would like to have a look at a few of the articles I have found while researching for my next book about the march please use them if you like.
    An audio account by a British Legionnaire of life in the Legion in the dessert then in Indochina and the March to China.
    The first few chapters of the new book.
    A site with the map of the Alessandri Column and other info concerning Indochina and the Legion.

    Thanks again bro.
    All the best.


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