Colonial Troops

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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Colonial Troops


military units and organizations of armed forces of the capitalist states that are used to maintain colonialist rule and suppress the national liberation movement in the colonies and dependent countries.

Colonial troops are raised in the metropolitan countries by levies based on compulsory military service, by the enlistment of volunteers from the metropolitan country and foreign countries, and by the recruitment of Europeans living in the colonies and of certain categories of the local native population. As a rule, the officers are from the metropolitan country; only a small proportion of low-ranking officers come from the native population of the colonies. France sent many of its colonial troops from Africa to fight in the Western European theater during World War I (1914–18), and Great Britain sent Indian troops to various fronts. During World War II (1939–45), Great Britain carried out military operations in Africa, Burma, and certain other areas primarily with colonial troops, and after the war Great Britain, France, the Netherlands, Belgium, Spain, and Portugal maintained colonial forces. As the colonial system disintegrated and independent states were established in the former colonies, the colonial troops of a number of countries were disbanded, and by 1973 only Great Britain, Portugal, and the Netherlands still maintained such forces.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in classic literature ?
A report, or it would be better to say a rumor, had come to the British headquarters in German East Africa that the enemy had landed in force on the west coast and was marching across the dark continent to reinforce their colonial troops. In fact the new army was supposed to be no more than ten or twelve days' march to the west.
In Mein Kampf, Hitler said they and the French colonial troops showed the full extent of Germany's humiliation.
For this reason, Johann Gremont focuses on the maintenance of order by the colonial troops who were posted along the border.
FPrivate John Connolly fought at Rorke's Drift in 1879, a battle which saw more than 150 British and colonial troops successfully defend the garrison against an intense assault by 3,000 to 4,000 Zulu warriors in Natal, South Africa.
One reason is said to be the use by Britain and France of colonial troops on the Western Front.
However, the Sniders were given or sold to colonial troops and saw service well into the 20th century with them.
After the war, many were still in service with reservists and colonial troops in Africa and would remain so until the region was conquered by the British.
During the Anglo-Zulu war at Rourke's Drift, British and colonial troops defended their garrison against an unremitting attack by creating a defensive circle.
The film forgets the racialised pecking order that determined life and death for both British and French colonial troops at Dunkirk and after it.
President Duterte demanded on Monday that the US return the Balangiga bells which US colonial troops seized as 'spoils of war' after they massacred the entire town in 1901.
Their topics include Algerians in the French army 1914-18: from military integration to the dawn of Algerian patriotism, Muslim askaris in the colonial troops of German East Africa 1889-1918, between "non-Russian nationalities" and Muslim identity: perceptions and self-perceptions of Soviet Central Asian soldiers in the Red Army 1941-45, haunted by jinns: dealing with war neuroses among Muslim soldiers during the Second World War, and Muslim sailors in British colonial navies from the Second World War to independence.