Colonel Revon rue Catinat Saïgon 1952

Course de Cyclo-Pousse Saigon 1948

La semaine a Sagon en 1961

Melia Cigarettes Saigon

Femme en Simca 5 Saigon juillet 1950

Soldat Français Saïgon 1953

Rivoire et Carret Saigon

Femmes rue Catinat Saïgon

Citroen DS19 devant le temple Vinh Nghiem

Colonel Revon rue Catinat Saïgon 1952

Societ des Imprimeries et Librairies Indochichoises Saigon

La Banque B.N.C.I de Sagon

Hôtel de Ville Saïgon  Ford Vedette Citroën Traction

Femmes devant Brodard Saigon septembre 1950

Grands Magasins Charner Saïgon

Asianis le Pastis de Sagon

Soldat Armée Air en solex Saigon

Aigle Azur Saigon

Etablissements Marthe Gaschot Saigon

Rue Tu Do - Catinat Saïgon

Le Grand Monde Miss Saigon 1954

La Maison Brodart, rue Catinat

Biere 33 Export Saigon

Derrière la cathédrale de Saigon

Colette et son velosolex devant le Cafe Givral Saïgon

Les Paras et les Tirailleurs  Saïgon

Hôtel de Ville Saïgon  Ford Vedette Citroën Traction

Camions Renault Vietnam

Opticien Michaux Saigon

Hotel Continental Saigon

La sortie de la messe le dimanche 16 octobre 1948

Automoto Saïgon

Epicerie Saigonnaise Lien Seng Saïgon

Défilé des parachutistes et des légionnaires le 27 avril 1947 à Saïgon

Femme en Velosolex rue Catinat Saïgon

jeunes sagonnaises

Solex Famililal à Saïgon

Sud Est Asiatique Saïgon

Bière Hommel BGI Saigon

Femmes Saïgon 1953

Cigarettes Cotab Cholon

Le Monument aux morts de Saïgon

Pâtes Delices Saigon

Au centre le Commandant Ourta Saigon mars 1952

7 Jours à Saïgon

Citroën Traction et Ford Vedette sur le boulevard Bonard à Saïgon

Rue Catinat en 1946

Htel Continental Cyclomoteur Mars 1951

Sud Est Asiatique Saïgon

En 1950 le Boulevard Charner Saïgon

Femmes sur la rue Catinat Saigon

Le Docteur Irwin S. Leinbach devant son Ambulance Peugeot de l'Hôpital Cho-Ray de Saïgon

Jeunes filles saigonnaises

Velosolex et Camion Citroen Saigon

Soldat Français rue Catinat Saïgon 1952

Asianis le Pastis de Sagon

Renault Outre Mer Indochine

Motard escorte d honneur Saigon 1949

Femmes Saïgon 1953

Automoto Saïgon

Taxi Renault 4cv Saïgon

Cigarettes Nationales Saigon

Le restaurant Kim Phu Dung Saigon

Gendarmes dans la rue Catinat Saïgon Août 1951

Femmes en Renault 4 CV devant le Théâtre de Saïgon

Soldat Français rue Catinat Saïgon 1952

La sortie de la messe le dimanche 16 octobre 1948

Bière 33 Saigon

Place Francis Garnier

Air France

Taxi Renault 4 CV de Sagon

Htel Continental Cyclomoteur 23 Juin 1947

Femmes rue Catinat Saiuml;gon

Two monks in Saigon Air France

Touristes françaises en Cyclomoteur à Saïgon

Aigle Azur Indochine

Femmes Vietnamiennes devant le Garage Charner Saïgon

Soldat Français Velosolex 45 1952

Bière Larue Indochine

Femmes rue Catinat Saiuml;gon

Gendarmes dans la rue Catinat Saïgon Août 1951

Air Vietnam Saigon 1952

Etudiants Vietnamiens Saiuml;gon

Joseph Maugis Professeur Lycée Chasseloup Laubat Saiuml;gon

Chez Brodard

Femmes rue Catinat Saiuml;gon

Femmes sur la rue Catinat Saigon

Femmes devant le magasin Nouveautés Catinat Saïgon

La semaine à Saïgon-Aout 70

Htel Continental Taxi Renault

duong Tu-Do ex rue catinat Saïgon septembre 1955

Cigares Mlia

Sipeo Kodak Saigon

Aigle Azur Saigon

Une femme et ses deux enfants rue Catinat Saigon

Femmes devant le magasin de Lucien Berthet Saïgon en 1953

Sipeo Kodak Saigon

La Croix du Sud rue Catinat Saïgon

Return to the menu page: [Indochina]

Drapeau anglais

Gendarmerie Indochina

A Tribute to Erwan Bergot

Erwan Bergot Gendarmes au Combat

Erwan Bergot was born January 27th, 1930 in Bordeaux and is a French writer and journalist. As a former paratroooper he went to Indochina where he served in the 6th batallion of Bigard’s Colonial Paratroopers and then on to head the the heavy mortar company of the First Foreign Paratrooper Regiment at Ðiên Biên Phu. He was taken prisoner and experienced the hell of the internment campst.
In 1955 he is recalled to serve in Algeria with the 2 nd Foreign Paratroop Regiment, and the 11th Shock (special forces), and was severely wounded in the right eye during a clash in the Constantine and finally left combat and turned to writing and journalism.
Erwan Bergot died May 1st, 1993, in the Val-de-Grâce hospital in Paris.
One of his books, published by the Presses de la Cité, is devoted to the Combat Police during the Indochina war:
From Camau Point in the south to the borders of China, from the banks of the Mekong to the shores of Annam, 14,000 police officers served in Indochina. They paid a high price – 650 lost their lives and 1500 were wounded. To retrace the history of Combat Police in Indochina is to write the history of the thousands of lost stations which “held” the ground, in contact with the population, without communications, and often without any heavy armament. With exceptional courage these police units showed the best example of the virtues that are the hallmark of their branch of service: obedience, obstinacy, humanity, and absolute dedication. “Combat Police” is a superb tribute to the survivors. It is also a good lesson in heroism...
Source : Wikipedia

Gendarmerie Indochine

A reception at the Tân Sơn Nhứt in 1949

Gendarmerie Indochine 1949 Gendarmes Tan Son Nhut Saigon 1949

A French politician is received at the Tân Sơn Nhứt airport (located at 6 Km. from the center of Saigon) by officers of the Gendarmerie and of the Republican Guard.
© Photos by Raymond Varoqui, born on July 7th, 1921 in Ottange (Moselle), died February 8th, 2013. He was assigned to the SCA (Army Cinematographic Service) as a photojournalist in 1948. He was immediately sent on a mission with the SPI (Press Information Service) in Indochina.

Gendarmerie Indochine

The Republican Guard arrives in Saigon in February of 1950

Gendarmerie Indochina

December 1949, the Gendarmerie received the order to form three marching legions of Republican Guards to send to Indochina.
The first legion was formed on December 25th, 1949, at Horb am Neckar (Germany), the second at Romans in the Drôme, and the third at Pamers in the Ariège.
Total personnel: 1000 officers, enlisted men, and gendarmes each.
Source: Erwan Bergot in his book, "Gendarmes in Combat".
In the photo taken by Adjutant Chief Raoul Benezet: Turning over the colors of the Republican Guard to the First Marching Legion of the R.G. in Saigon, February, 1950.

The Police (Gendarmes) in Indochina
1945 - 1955

Force Gendarmerie Indochine Gendarmes Saigon Indochine

Left: The different Police Forces in Indochina.
Right: The Guard Flag, decorated with the “Croix de Guerre”, of the T.O.E. (Foreign Theater Operations), on February 15, 1954.
Below: On July 4 th , 1954, a French Police Officer and a Vietminh Officer stand guard for the Trung Gia (Tonkin) conference, 40 Km. north of Hanoi.

Gendarmes Saigon Indochine Gendarmes Francais Vietminh Indochine

Gendarmerie Indochine

Gendarmerie Nationale

<Défilé militaire Saïgon juillet 1950

Saigon - Cochinchina Brigade

July 14th, parade in Saigon, 1950

Défilé militaire Saïgon juillet 1950 Un détachement de la Gendarmerie Coloniale Saïgon

In front of the Jean Comte garage on Norodom Boulevard, the crowd gathers to watch the July 14th parade in 1950. The streets of Saigon are decorated with French and Vietnamese colors for the occasion. the photo on the right shows a detachment of the Colonial Police (Gendarmes).
Source : ECPAD

Gendarmerie Indochine

Petrus-Ky Barracks, 1951

Gendarmes Poste de Police Saïgon 1951 Gendarmes Poste de Police Saïgon 1951 Gendarmes Poste de Police Saïgon 1951

Gendarmes Daguzan, Pagès, and Lalanne in front of the police station.
Saigon September 1951.

Gendarmerie Indochine

Anniversary of the 1918 Armistice

Les gendarmes lors des cérémonies commémoratives du 11 novembre 1952 Saigon Gendarmes Saïgon 1952

The Gendarmes during the commemorative ceremonies on November 11th, 1952, Norodom Boulevard (now Lê Duẩn) in front of the Jean Comte Company in Saigon.

Gendarmerie Indochine

Gendarmes at attention

Gendarmes au garde à vous Gendarmes au garde à vous

Gendarmes at attention.
Saigon 1952.

Gendarmerie Indochine

Gendarmes on leave

Gendarmes rue Catinat 1951 Gendarmes rue Catinat 1951 Gendarmes 1954

Left: Gendarmes on a cyclomoteur on Catinat Street near the Continental Hotel.
Center: On Catinat Street, Gendarmes in front of the Café Givral.
Right: Gendarme in Saigon September 4th, 1954.

Gendarmes in Saigon 1947 The Gendarme Benezet in Cochinchina

Left : The Gendarme Raoul Benezet and a soldier from the "Cochinchina Republican Guard" (G.R.C.).
Right : The Gendarme Benezet in Cochinchina.

Gendarmerie Indochine

Gendarme roommates

Une chambrée de Gendarmes à Saïgon

A pair of Gendarme roommates in a Saigon barracks in 1952.

Gendarmerie Indochine

The Gendarmes in the Mekong Delta

Une tour fortifiée défendant l'accès de la route Poste de la Gendarmerie vietnamienne

Left: February 8th, 1951, on the Mytho Road southwest of Saigon, a bus loaded to capacity drives past a fortified tower defending access to the road against Vietminh infiltrators.
Right: A Vietnamese Gendarme station in Tan An.
(Source: Erwan Bergot's book, "Gendarmes au Combat")

Gendarmerie Indochine

History of the Gendarmerie in Indochina

The prolongation of the war results in a heavy increase in personnel. In all, nearly 14,000 men succeed one another on the peninsula between 1946 and 1956, for an average tour of 24 months. Until 1955, 3,000 Gendarmes are permanently stationed on Vietnamese soil.
Additionally, during this period the battle order of the Gendarmerie of Indochina evolves under the pressure of events.
Between 1948 and 1949 the rise to "Independence as part of the French Union" of Vietnam, Laos, and Cambodia results in a transfer of sovereignty to the former Indochinese colonies. The Gendarmerie detachment must now organize the National Police Forces for the three new states while simultaneously ensuring, temporarily, its usual function. In 1952, the Gendarmerie of Indochina detachment becomes the "Detachment of Gendarmerie of the Far-East".
In 1954, the Geneva Accords seal the destiny of France and Indochina by putting an end to the conflict. The following year a mixed legion of Gendarmerie assembles all Gendarmes assigned to the territory. The departure of the Gendarmes occurs over time until 1956, the date of the departure of the French Troops from the base at Cape Saint-Jacques.
Only a few police missions remain: in South Vietnam until December 1957, in Cambodia until 1970, and in Laos until 1975.

le Combattant d'Indochine

The Missions of the Gendarmerie
Article published in the magazine, "The Combatant of Indochina"
by General Serignan

Le Combattant d'Indochine

If the main missions were supervisory and carried out by our officers, our military officers and our police officers, they were oddly varied. One would find them in:
- Vietnamese battalions.
- Cambodian hunter battalions.
- Moroccan Tabors.
- African and North-African companies.
- the Republican Guard of Cochin China.
- the Montagnard Guard.
- The Khmer National Guard.
- The Tonkin Guard.
- The Guard of the southern provinces of Central Vietnam.
- The Eastern Tonkin Border Guard.
- The Central Annam Militia.
- Partisan units from the plantations.
To which it should also be added:
- The schools for children of military personnel in Dalat and Cape Saint-Jacques.
- South Vietnamese Forces training centers.
- the administration and auto service of South Vietnam.
- Vietnamese Military Schools.
- the different missions of Vietnamese, Laotian and Cambodian police organizations.
Staff, well-known for their inherently versatile skills, were up to the challenge for the organically and militarily different training tasks:
- Section of the gendarmerie.
- Provost detachment.
- Mounted Squadron.
- Auto-Machine Gun Squadron (A.M.) or tank.
- Reconnaissance Squadron.
- Paratrooper squad.
- Commandos.
- River Squadron.
- Infantry company.
- Combat engineer company.
And of course, the Honor Guard and Band of The French Forces in the Far-East.

Gendarmerie Indochine

The bridgehead at Haiphong being evacuated by
french troops in May of 1955
The French Gendarmes observe the arrival of the Viet-Minh

French Gendarmes Haiphong May 18, 1956

Photo taken May 18, 1955 of the arrival of Viet-Minh troops in Haiphong; in the foreground, French Gendarmes.
In his order of the day number 4, dated May 15, 1955, General Paul Ely, French delegate and commander in chief in Indochina, brings the Tonkin chapter to a definite closing:
"For 300 days, the forces of the expeditionary force (...) held the word of our country as it should be, with discipline, selflessly, with pride, with total loyalty, in a spirit of honor intact . By keeping them in Haiphong, they have helped hundreds of thousands of people to choose their destiny. They now go head high, their task completed".
General Ély left Saigon June 2, 1955.

Gendarmerie Indochine

After the looting of the Hotel Majestic in Saigon on July 20, 1955,
One of the last assignments of the Gendarmes....
The securing of the Hotel Continental

Pillage du Majestic Saigon juillet 1955 Pillage du Majestic Saigon 20 juillet 1955

Right photo was taken by Jacques Chancel.
The International Control Commission blamed the representative of France for the incidents on July 20 in Saigon, during the demonstration organized in favor of Diem and against the Geneva Accords, during which the two hotels where the staff of the International Commission were staying, the Majestic and Galliéni, were looted.
Following the looting the members of the International Control Commission (Poles, Indians, and Canadians) would stay at the Hotel Continental and would be under the protection of French police (Gendarmes).

Gendarmes français Saïgon 1956

The French Gendarmes lay a wreath at Saigon’s war memorial
April 10, 1956

French Gendarmes Saigon april, 10 1956

During the last parade of the French expeditionary force which took place April 10, 1956 in the streets of Saigon, two French gendarmes lay a wreath at the war memorial, under the gaze of the army corps general Jacquot, commander in Chief, Indochina.
In the background the last of the French troops and officials.

Gendarmerie Indochina

Return to the menu page: [Indochina]

haut de page