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British Army calls in French troubleshooter

Meanwhile, another British officier received a commendation from CDR 1st French Div.

Maj Hiroshi Theodorakakis exchange officer at 1(FR) Div in Besançon, awarded a Commander’s Commendation by MG Blachon for his 2 exceptional years at the heart of the CJEF and his deployment to Op Barkhane.

Eb_fyV9XYAE0CLf.jpg
 
He has just received a very symbolic gift from Cdr 1st French Div.

An unexpected gift of a French officer’s sword to Brigadier Al Veitch, deputy of 1(FR) Div, signifying his “right of passage” as a French officer after his 8 years spent working alongside the French.

View attachment 487661
Did he also get the Magnum of Champagne to practice his bottle opening skills with the sword?
 
I
Meanwhile, another British officier received a commendation from CDR 1st French Div.

Maj Hiroshi Theodorakakis exchange officer at 1(FR) Div in Besançon, awarded a Commander’s Commendation by MG Blachon for his 2 exceptional years at the heart of the CJEF and his deployment to Op Barkhane.

View attachment 487662
Interesting name. Japanese mum, Greek dad?
 
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Interesting name. Japanese mum, Greek dad?

When the British Army goes multinational it does in style ! A Greek-Japanese in the British Forces detached to the French Army, that is quite difficult to beat...even though I have heard of a French officer who joined the Australian Army, then did an exchange with the British Army and as such did a tour with EUTM Mali...
 
I wasn't really French-bashing. Far from it as I love France and am a lifetime Francophile.

I regard France like my brother. Much as I love him deep down inside and would give him a kidney I wouldn't dream of telling the little cnut that.
 
I wasn't really French-bashing. Far from it as I love France and am a lifetime Francophile.

I regard France like my brother. Much as I love him deep down inside and would give him a kidney I wouldn't dream of telling the little cnut that.

Well having served in both armies, I have always remarked how similar we are in many ways and how much shared history we have.
 
Well having served in both armies, I have always remarked how similar we are in many ways and how much shared history we have.

Which is why I suggested we should have had an enhanced Entente Cordiale and conquered the world. Let's face it we got the best bits anyway.

We could have included the Germans as well and used them as cannon fodder against the fuzzy-wuzzies when they looked a bit tasty (Zulus etc. OK, assegai fodder in their case).

But oh no. We end up kicking the crap out of each other for centuries whilst the European minnows like Spain, Portugal, Belgium and Holland go out and sneakily nick fairly decent chunks of territory.

We each keep what we already have. Divvy up the Americas. We get the north and the Frogs get the south (the big canal a Frenchman will one day build being the boundary). French get all of North Africa, we get all of southern Africa, the Boxheads get the crap bits in the middle. Draw lots for the ROW.

Let's face it, it could hardly have turned out worse than it is at the moment.
 

Bodenplatte

War Hero
Good to know that he is very well prepared. I hate nothing more than seeing officers reaching the end of their careers being given a foreign posting as an opportunity for one final trawl thanks to comfortable foreign allowances even if they don't speak the local lingo and have no relevant expertise.
They usually do a long language course for about a year. It's the same with many Loan Service types - a long language course, then an almost total inability to hold a conversation in the host's language "It's all right - everybody speaks English !"
 
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Bodenplatte

War Hero
Meanwhile, another British officier received a commendation from CDR 1st French Div.

Maj Hiroshi Theodorakakis exchange officer at 1(FR) Div in Besançon, awarded a Commander’s Commendation by MG Blachon for his 2 exceptional years at the heart of the CJEF and his deployment to Op Barkhane.

Well deserved, I have no doubt.

But his tailor should be guillotined.

What cap badge is that, btw ? I lost track 30 years ago.
 
They usually do a long language course for about a year. It's the same with many Loan Service types - a long language course, then an almost total inability to hold a conversation in the hosts language "It's all right - everybody speaks English !"
My experience with Services language training at DSL (quite some time ago now) was that it was too generic and academic with insufficient time and resources allocated to one on one conversation targeted to the posting requirement of the individual concerned. A classic case was that on (even relatively late) TELIC rotations many "linguists" were deployed having been taught a mixture of "Fus-ha" (i.e classical) and MSA (i.e. Modern Standard Arabic) but were completely baffled by the local Iraqi dialects.

The other thing I noted was that prior language experience was often undervalued and misunderstood. Personally, after I had joined the British Army, as I was (and still am) fluent in both, I applied to take the French and Polish Diploma (NATO SLP 4444) exams in the same year. I was denied because "that would be impossible to do successfully". They did not want me to sit the exams at all without having attended a course either. However I was subsequently assessesed as fully capable by separate military linguists in both languages and that I did not need to be sent on any courses. I achieved distinctions in both in consequent years.

The best military language training that I have witnessed was conducted (again a long time ago) at RAF North Luffenham in a unit specially set up to prepare Serbo-Croat (and later Albanian) speakers for deployment to the Balkans. There, the emphasis was on specific to-task language training with bags of one-on-one conversation (with native speakers) and plenty of operational feedback from Theatre.
 
Well deserved, I have no doubt.

But his tailor should be guillotined.

What cap badge is that, btw ? I lost track 30 years ago.

That of the "Really Large Corps".
 

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