Selection Question

Hi everyone,

This has been addressed elsewhere to some extent but not in the same context. I know that being familiar with French won't necessarily increase chances of being selected by itself, and it is more just useful for if you get in. But being a young American, I think it's fair to say I need all the help I can get.

Anyway, my question is: Will being mostly fluent in French to demonstrate *MOTIVATION* help my chances? Again, like I said, I know it has been answered that it is mostly just to be ahead of the game if you get in. My point is that being who I am, I (more than most) need to prove that I have strong and focused motivation. I have a knack for learning languages, I can carry on significant conversation in Spanish and picked it up fast. If I can speak French pretty strongly by the time I go to selection do you think it will be a good way to demonstrate that I am serious and motivated?

I plan on learning as much as I can either way, but I apprecate any input as to if it can be used as a selling point in the interviews.

Thanks guys
It would be + for you. Especially if you tell them that you learned French for legion
That's what I mean. I would explain that I learned it for the sole purpose that I would be using it for the legion. Harder to dismiss someone that learned an entirely new language for something that is far from definite.


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Here is response from Joseph Cosgrove to a question I asked about learning French in the Legion.

Hi Tom and welcome to the forum. I've harked on about this subject for a while. As English is the language on the Cervens forum, French is the language of the FFL. With today's media such as Youtube and documentaries of the Legion on the telly, there is no question that you need to learn the language. It is not an obligation to join, but everyone is forewarned about what is waiting for them.

Yes the Legion teaching of the language is as you say. There is very little grammar other than for example : today (we) it is Tuesday. Yesterday (we) was/were Monday. Tomorrow (we) it will be Wednesday. The difficulty lies with the language of the recruit. In German you say I have hunger. That is the same as in French but in English we say I am hungry. I don't know how they say it in Chinese or Turk so in the early stages learning French can be frustrating.

As for knowing 400 words at the end of basic, I read a book on learning French which said that we (book was in English) already know 5000 French words. According to the book there are at least 5000 French words that end in tion (pronounced shion in french) which are the same as in English with one major exception -station which is gare in french. However long time ago the French did use the word station. Now add to that the déjà vu, bon voyage and the rest we've got our 400 words.

Learning more than you are taught is up to the recruit. You can ask you binôme to help you or ask what different objects are etc. But if he's a right little c*nt like mine was, then forget it. Nothing stops the would-be recruit from turning up with a French learning book and a dictionary. Au contraire, it would show that he is keen. Even better if he buys them before going and uses them. Pages ear marked, a few things underlined, maybe a few hand written comments on the inside cover. It's just screaming out : "That man is keen!"

The problem with Legion French is that to begin with it is only good for the Legion and the Legion garrison town. All the NCOs will be used to the poor grammar and pronunciation/accent, as will the bars and shops around the regiment. But when you get some leave and get away from that cosy environnement it's a different story. If the Frenchman, or the girl you're trying to chat up, wants to take the time to listen and try and understand, ok. If not it's: “j'ai pas comprisâ€￾ (Je n'ai pas compris).

There is, among many, a site called and you can learn the language of your choice. There are different levels. Once you have chosen your level there are word games, grammar, sentences, vocabulary and a monthly progress test. Free or if you like a premium membership. Everyday they send you a a sentence and break it down.


Active Member
Here is a reply from Nick Fury on why the Legion is recruiting French citizens.

They really need Francophones, they don't have anywhere near 50% and no where near the number they need for proper training and integration so instead of binomes they have trinomes or even more guys to one francophone in basic. Plus in general it is harder for French citizens to desert, it carries far more consequences for their future life than it does for foreigners who can often just go back home. The French recruits are stuck since France is their homeland and if they desert they have a bad record that might affect jobs and other things.


Hell no..
I have seen a hundred morons speak perfect French, and packed their bags. The Legion does not care for binomes and all this junk hermit is saying.
Another thing you guys missed again, YOU CAN GO CIVIL ANYTIME IN THE FIVE YEARS, so no, the French don't have a hard time leaving, they go civil. You people amaze me here, you really do.
For God's sake, why do you have to be so arrogant when you post DCLXVI? This is getting annoying. Make the point you want to make without trashing people who are polite... First (and last) warning. Next time such inflammatory post will be deleted.
Back to what you said... So, claim having seen “one hundred of French-speaking legionnaires leavingâ€￾? Given the fact that francophones are nowadays less than 25% of the recruits and you've been in the Legion for less than 2 years now, I have a doubt...
Hell no..
I have seen a hundred morons speak perfect French, and packed their bags. The Legion does not care for binomes and all this junk hermit is saying.
Another thing you guys missed again, YOU CAN GO CIVIL ANYTIME IN THE FIVE YEARS, so no, the French don't have a hard time leaving, they go civil. You people amaze me here, you really do.
So I guess the reason why some foreigners desert, instead of going civil is because it's simpler and/or is almost a tradition?
I read a post from a dude who was recently in the 2e REI for 6 years. He said that usually nobody in the regiment bothers going civil unless there's a real good reason for it, people just desert instead since it's simple to just pack your bags and go, instead of requesting to go civil the ‘right’ way.



I don't care if you delete my post and want to censor anything. I posted the reality. Loads of French speakers never make it in, period, that is the reality. The second reality is, I made the point on civil already and they still think deserting is the only option.
As for REP, yea, unless you hide on the ferry for 12 hours to desert... If that is how you want to go. Lastly, call me arrogant all you want, I don't care at all. Not my problem the reality is not accepted. Hansenman, you are right, you want a good reason, but the traditional method is pack your bags, but it does not have to be done this way.
I'm not criticising what you say, I'm criticising the way you say it (profanities, writing whole sentences in capital letters, etc.). You get my point tête de nœud ?

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