2ème Régiment Étranger de Parachutistes
The 2nd Foreign Parachute Regiment (French: 2ème Régiment Étranger de Parachutistes, 2ème REP) is an Airborne regiment in the French Foreign Legion established on the 9th October 1948. It is a part of the 11e Brigade Parachutiste and the spearhead of the French Rapid reaction force. As such, it is typically described as being the French Foreign Legion's Special Forces unit, although it is technically not a part of the French Army Special Forces Brigade.
In 1950, the battalion became a part of the General Reserve in Indochina. Following the French defeat on Route Coloniale 4 in October 1950, the battalion was transported by ship to North Vietnam. The battalion took part in several battles, including the first battle of Nghia Lo (October 1951), the Black River (November-December 1951), and the fight for Route Coloniale 6 (January-February 1952) during the Battle of Hoa Binh.
The battalion made a parachute drop on Dien Bien Phu as reinforcement during the Battle of Dien Bien Phu (March-May 1954). Fighting without reinforcements, remnants of the 1er and 2e BEP were overwhelmed after a final assault by Viet Minh forces; fewer than 100 legionnaires of the 2e BEP were taken prisoner. On 1 December 1954, after the surviving members of the battalion had returned from captivity after the Armistice, the 2e BEP was later reconstituted with replacements, and returned by ship to French Algeria.
On 5 June 1956, the 2ème BEP was enlarged to a full regiment, and was redesignated the 2ème Régiment Étranger de Parachutistes (2ème REP), or 2nd Foreign Parachute Regiment.
The 2nd REP forms part of the 11e Brigade Parachutiste as well as the French Rapid Reaction Force, and is based near the town of Calvi on the island of Corsica, just south of mainland France.