Illegal to fight abroad ?

As far as I understand its now illegal for British citizens to fight for foreign countries / causes ? So where will that leave a Brit wanting to join the French and Spanish foreign Legion ?, the IDF and all the others who are on "our" side. ?
 
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I recall a British general several years back who expressed a concern that if the army had to many foreign soldiers it could be in trouble if their country of origin made a similar ruling.

At the time I seem to recall he was derided as racist, as (typically under the previous administration) it was reinterpreted as there should be no Black people in the army
 
Which law makes it illegal to fight in a foreign war, or civil war? How are such things defined?
Dunno , thats why I`m asking , AFAIK EU citizens can apply to join any EU countries armed forces ,of course not speaking the lingo would eliminate 99% of the UK population.
 
We have some interesting historical examples -
Spencer F Chapman training communist fighters (terrorists?) in Malaya during WWII;
George Orwell and others - many others - in the Spanish Civil War;
Lawrence of Arabia possibly;
George Gordon, Lord Byron in Greece
No doubt there will be other examples ...
 
As far as I understand its now illegal for British citizens to fight for foreign countries / causes ? So where will that leave a Brit wanting to join the French and Spanish foreign Legion ?, the IDF and all the others who are on "our" side. ?
Its illegal to train with/fight for designated terrorist groups. Its illegal to serve in armed forces at war with countries we are not at war with but since nobody declares war these days thats not really enforceable. Other than that i'm not aware of any laws preventing foreign service.
 
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-29008316

Lots of new anti-terrorist powers for MP's to consider but no action on the actual measure that would reduce the possibility of terrorist attacks, and that is a reduction in immigration
 
^ and that turned out well didn't it?
worked with the brother of one of the guys on that sortie and he was a bit of a twat aswell.
 

ehwhat

Old-Salt
Book Reviewer
The Foreign Enlistment Act of 1870 (33 & 34 Vict. c.90) gets dusted off from time to time, but has proved to be unenforceable. It failed with enlistment with the French Foreign Legion, The International Brigade in Spain and during the Angola FNLA problem.

The Mahal program of the IDF hasn't fallen under the same scrutiny as the jihadis for a very simple reason. The UK is using the terrorism statutes to deal with the issue. They aren't on the list. Several of the Syrian rebel groups are listed as terrorist organizations therefore, under current interpretation of statute, anyone off to train or fight with them has offended against the law and can be prosecuted.

Demonstrating the Kafkaesque landscape we live in, if you went to fight for Assad you might not be in violation of current statute and therefore not prosecuted. Not that I would suggest that anyone be daft enough to test this...
 

4(T)

LE
Rhodesia was an interesting one: technically, any Brit enlisting and fighting there was guilty of treason - as Rhodesia had declared UDI from UK and therefore was in rebellion. Maybe that was negated because, IIRC, the Rhodesian government and armed forces still recognised HM as the boss.
 
Rhodesia was an interesting one: technically, any Brit enlisting and fighting there was guilty of treason - as Rhodesia had declared UDI from UK and therefore was in rebellion. Maybe that was negated because, IIRC, the Rhodesian government and armed forces still recognised HM as the boss.

No they didn't, Rhodesia became a republic in 1970.
 

sup rec

LE
Book Reviewer
Dunno , thats why I`m asking , AFAIK EU citizens can apply to join any EU countries armed forces ,of course not speaking the lingo would eliminate 99% of the UK population.

EU citizens have to abide by the residency rules for enlistment. So a Pole living in UK must have been here for 5 years AND take British citizenship otherwise the are not eligible.

Someone will now come on, as they always do, and say "I'd like to see them try and stop an EU citizen joining the British Army" but it has been done numerous times and is still one of the recruiting rules.
 
I have known members of the British Army who are from Gibraltar, Fiji, Nepal, Australia, Irish Republic, as well as coming across a British lad serving in the Italian Marines, conscripted when visiting his Italian mother's family over there.

I have never came across any ex-members of the French Foreign Legion who then joined the British Army. It seems to be the other way round. I daresay there are some though.
 
I have known members of the British Army who are from Gibraltar, Fiji, Nepal, Australia, Irish Republic, as well as coming across a British lad serving in the Italian Marines, conscripted when visiting his Italian mother's family over there.

I have never came across any ex-members of the French Foreign Legion who then joined the British Army. It seems to be the other way round. I daresay there are some though.

I think there's at least one on this forum (if I'm not mistaken)...and I remember reading the biography of a young British officer killed in Iraq or Afghanistan several years ago who had served in the FFL before going to Sandhurst.
 
I have known members of the British Army who are from Gibraltar, Fiji, Nepal, Australia, Irish Republic, as well as coming across a British lad serving in the Italian Marines, conscripted when visiting his Italian mother's family over there.

I have never came across any ex-members of the French Foreign Legion who then joined the British Army. It seems to be the other way round. I daresay there are some though.


There`s a few , some of notability http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/obituaries/9221907/Brigadier-Tony-Hunter-Choat.html
 

Joker62

ADC
Book Reviewer
I have never came across any ex-members of the French Foreign Legion who then joined the British Army. It seems to be the other way round. I daresay there are some though.

My brother did, 5 years FFL, then joined the British Army in 91 and still serving now.

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