Laudun-L’Ardoise: Colonel Perrier takes stock of Operation Rubicon carried out by the legionnaires

Colonel Perrier, head of the 1st foreign engineering regiment of Laudun-L’Ardoise, talks about this Operation Rubicon which took place from 7 to 10 November. It highlights the seriousness of the legionnaires during these four days in the field and underlines the axes of progress.

What is your analysis of this Rubicon operation?

It’s very positive. There were all the ingredients for the regiment to train for more difficult, high-intensity conflicts. We are not yet at the ideal level that we would need to be very strong on this type of conflict. The staircase of excellence is very high but we climbed a few steps. The men behaved very well. They maneuvered well and there was no letting up. It is also thanks to the leaders who keep the legionnaires in rhythm. When you’re in a village, you see people passing by and it’s not a war situation, you have to mentally try to put yourself in it. It’s a real exercise that is really not easy. They did it very, very well.

You were able to test new equipment with in particular the latest griffins. What did you think of it?

It is extremely satisfying. I think the country is making a big effort for defense and everyone measures it. There is a reality that cannot be dismantled: we are more powerful with this type of equipment and we are better protected. The Cayman used has this ability to fly very low, tactically, to quickly transport a commando group and to leave very quickly. The latest generation floating bridge is the F1 of motorized engineering floating bridges. These machines fully met the expectations of the exercise.

The pontoon bridge used by the legionnaires to cross the Rhône.
Midi Libre – Chloé Lopez

What are the points to improve?

We have an axis of effort to make on the war in the informational fields. An informational war employs the same concepts and the same fundamentals as a classic battle. You have to attack, you have to defend yourself. For the crossing exercise, we had planned to build a deception maneuver, that is to say, to make the adversary believe that we are going to cross the Rhône not where we had planned to Slate but elsewhere. That, we still have to work on.

What did you particularly like?

We tested a new concept that works. We practiced taking the port of L’Ardoise and repairing it as if it had been destroyed by bombardment. With our genius abilities, we have shown that we are capable of restoring the vital infrastructures of the port. This ability is extremely important for us because it is dual. It can be used in times of peace as well as in times of war. We saw that it made sense to repair a port. There are no other abilities in the French armies that really do this. Our job is to propose that to the Army. 1er REG has tested this and in our opinion it works even if it still needs to be developed.

How did you manage the exercises in the center of Laudun?

The reception of the population was excellent. It was not an objective as such but I find that thanks to this exercise, the Regiment continued its local anchoring in Laudun. All feedback was positive. The sequence that we played in the city center last Tuesday was very appreciated by the inhabitants.

Personally, how did you experience these four days?

I had fun (laughs). It’s our job and we love it. Anyone who doesn’t like to be in the field, to sleep outside, to be a little wet, he is unhappy in the army. We would like to do this type of exercise more often.

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