The King of Spain expressed his “love and admiration” for the Spanish Foreign Legion, during the celebration of the centenary of the Legion’s founding, EFE informs on September 20.
King of Spain Philip VI was present on Sunday, September 20, at a ceremony marking the centenary of the Spanish Foreign Legion’s establishment. The festive ceremony was held at the Alvarez de Sotomayor de Viator military base in Almeria.
Because of the coronavirus, the ceremony was held without spectators, those present were wearing face masks, and there were no welcoming speeches from the King, the Minister of Defense and other high-ranking officials.
King Philip VI expressed his “love and admiration” for the Spanish Foreign Legion. The king conveyed such words to General Marcos Llago, commander of the Alfonso XIII Brigade.
During the ceremony, a non-commissioned officer from the Legion staff read a brief historical note about the Legion’s history, since its creation by Lieutenant Colonel José Millán Astray, “the charismatic commander of legionaries.”
After that, those present honored the memory of the dead legionaries who gave their lives for Spain, and the Legionnaire’s anthem The Bridegrooms of Death was sung.
The Spanish Foreign Legion is known primarily for its active participation in the Spanish Civil War of 1936-1939. None other than Francisco Franco was the Deputy First Commander of the Spanish Foreign Legion. Francisco Franco was first the second-in-command after Millán Astray, and after Astray was wounded, he led the Legion. On July 16, 1936, Francisco and the Spanish Foreign Legion he led joined the military coup against the Republic. Units of the Foreign Legion became one of the main strike forces in the war against the Republic. Legionnaires were especially cruel. Franco used their units along with Moroccan mercenaries, to terrorize and intimidate the population in the occupied territories. The dispute between the legionnaires led by Millán Astray and the Spanish philosopher Miguel de Unamuno in Salamanca in 1936 became widely known. The philosopher reacted to the Legionnaires’ outcry: “Long live death!”, saying that he revolts against this paradoxical slogan and that the Legionnaires have only brute force, but never can convince anyone, because they do not have the ability to persuade, as well as reason and justice.
Today, the King of Spain is Philip VI . He was crowned on June 19, 2014, after the abdication of his father Juan Carlos I at the age of 76 years. The King is the Head of State and Commander in Chief of the Armed Forces of Spain.
His dynasty includes representatives of various royal houses of Europe, such as the kings of Spain, Greece, members of the British monarchy, the House of Romanov, Habsburg and the last emperors of Germany. In addition to the Spanish crown, he has titles of kings of Castile and Navarra, Aragon, the Two Sicilies, Naples and Sardinia. The King of Spain also historically has the title of King of Jerusalem, which was bestowed by the Pope along with the crown of Naples.
In the first week of his reign in June 2014, Philip VI met with representatives and associations of the LGBT community. In early 2015, he appeared on the cover of the LGBT Ragap magazine, demonstrating his friendly approach to the team, thus becoming the first Spanish head of state to appear in the LGBT magazine. He then also went to the Vatican to meet Pope Francis. In some official acts, Philip VI appeared in the absence of Catholic symbols “in order to comply with the separation of church and state under the Constitution.”
Source: Rossa Primavera News Agency