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    3/11 Fighter Squadron in Djibouti

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    Posted (edited)

    Dear Gentlemen,


    3/11 "Corse" Fighter Squadron* in Djibouti.

    *Escadron de Chasse 3/11 "Corse**" / EC 3/11 "Corse"

    **Corsica or l’île de Beauté / Isle of Beauty




    Fighter Group I/3 was created in September 1933 and took up the traditions of the SPA 69 and SPA 88 squadrons.

    During the six weeks of the French Campaign, the group won 52 victories.

    On June 18, the unit left France to take refuge in Tunisia then settled in August, stably, in Oran, until November 30, 1941, the date of the group's dissolution.


    The GC I/3 was reborn on January 1, 1943 and actively participated in the Italian campaign.

    In the fall of 1944, the group entered the Rhône valley, reaching Lyon, Dijon, Luxeuil, Strasbourg then Germany.

    At the time of capitulation, the 1/3 had won 108 victories and received 190 citations.

    He received the name "Corse" (Corsica)  because of the important part he played in the liberation of the "Isle of Beauty" and acquired the right to wear the fourragère of the Croix de Guerre 1939-1945.


    After, it participated in the Indochina War, Suez Canal Crisis, Algerian War, Western Sahara War, Gulf War, and Bosnia and Herzegovina War.


    On November 3, 2008, EC 3/11 Corsica replaced Fighter Squadron 4/33 Vexin on air base 188 Djibouti.

    It is on the date, symbolic for "Corsica", of 03/11/2018 that the ceremony to recreate the squadron with the SPA69 and SPA88 takes place in Djibouti.

    To fulfill its DA and conventional assault missions, the squadron then has seven Mirage 2000C RDIs and three Mirage 2000Ds.

    On August 31, 2011, the Mirage 2000C RDIs were replaced by four Mirage 2000-5Fs.

    The 70th anniversary of the “Corsica” appellation is celebrated on January 11, 2014 in Djibouti.

    On this occasion, the Mirages briefly sported a shark's mouth, inherited from the F-100s of the 4/11 "Jura" of 1978.

    The Mirage 2000-5F, number 57 registered 188-ET, also received a special anniversary decoration. On June 1, 2016, the M2000D withdrawal ceremony took place, the last two of which left Djibouti on June 16.

    The format of the squadron is adapted and its mission is refocused on its air policing mission in Djiboutian airspace.

    Operating in a joint and international context, the squadron participates in numerous exercises with allied forces.

    A prepositioned force, the EC 3/11 “Corsica” provides the French authorities with a reactive and effective intervention capacity while ensuring a mission of hardening the crews of the Air and Space Force*, and also personnel from other armies.(written by CROCHARD Jean-Luc / translation Google)


    *Air and Space Force / Armée de l'air et de l'espace since September 11, 2020 it's the new name of the Armée de l'air  / French Air Force


    For pictures, videos and recent history seeEscadron de Chasse 3/11 Corse | Djibouti | Facebook


    - Squadron insignia homologation Air A.1066 1976:


    - EC 3/11 "Corse" A.P.S. :






    - miniature:






    - pin's:




    - Flights / Escadrilles


    SPA 88 “THE SNAKE”
    SPA 88 has its origins on May 6, 2017 in Belfort-Chaux (90) during the First World War, first on Nieuport 17, 23 and 24 before becoming SPA 88 passing on SPAD VII and XIII on September 25 1917. Its traditions were then taken up, sometimes with short interruptions, by various escadrilles: the 105th escadrille of the 3rd RAC from January 1920, the 5th escadrille of the 3rd RAC in August 1920, the 1st escadrille of the GC I/3 from September 1933 to November 1941 , the 1st escadrille of GC I/3 “Corsica” from January 1943 to July 1947, the 1st escadrille of GC 1/6 “Corsica” from July 1947 to April 1952, then the 1st escadrille of EC 1/1 “Corsica » from April 1952 to June 28, 1966, finally the 1st escadrille of EC 3/11 “Corsica” from April 1966 to June 1997. It was finally reborn in Djibouti as the 1st escadrille of EC 3/11 “ Corsica” from November 3, 2008 to the present.(written by CROCHARD Jean-Luc / translation Google)


    - SPA 88 1e Escadrille (this is an earlier insignia it will get the homologation Air 1108 in 1971) Augis Lyon :




    - SPA 88 1e Escadrille homologation Air 1108 in 1971 Drago :




    SPA 69 “CAT’S HEAD”
    SPA 69 has its origins on September 20, 1915 in Lyon-Bron (69) during the First World War, first on Nieuport 10 before becoming SPA 88 passing on SPAD VII and XIII in November 1917. Its traditions are then taken up sometimes with short interruptions by various escadrilles: the 2nd escadrille of GC I/3 from September 1933 to July 1947, the 2nd escadrille of GC I/6 “Corsica” until April 1952, then the 2nd escadrille of GC 1 /1 “Corsica” until February 1966, finally the 2nd escadrille of the 3/11 “Corsica” from April 1966 to July 27, 1997. It was finally reborn in Djibouti as the 2nd escadrille of the EC 3/11 “Corsica” » from November 3, 2008 to the present.(written by CROCHARD Jean-Luc / translation Google)


    - SPA 69 2e Escadrille Augis (this is an earlier insignia it will get the homologation Air 1109 in 1971):




    - miniature:




    - 3/11 Corsica fourragères:

    - fourragère in the colors of the Croix de Guerre 1914-1918 with olive in the colors of the Croix de Guerre 1939-1945
    - fourragère in the colors of the Croix de guerre des théâtres d'opérations extérieurs (TOE / War Cross for foreign operational theatres)




    * & ** notes by No one


    Yours sincerely,

    No one

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    Dear Gentlemen,


    The patches:


    - EC 3/11 "Corse":






    - EC 3/11 "Corse" 1943-2013 / 70th Anniversary :




    - EC 3/11 "Corse" FRANCE:








    - SPA 88 1e Escadrille 2008:




    - SPA 88 1e Escadrille 2013:




    - SPA 69 2e Escadrille 2008:




    - SPA 69 2e Escadrille 2013:




    For the next three I don't know what they are for.


    - The Naineken could be for 5 000 hours of flight:




    - The Nai-Phone:




    - SPA 69 Djibouti since 2008:




    - The planes:


    - Mirage 2000 C :




    - Operational permanence 2009 Mirage 2000 C :




    - Mirage 2000 D :






    - Mirage 2000 F5 (not sure 100%):




    - When the Mirages 2000 F5 arrived to replace the 2000 C (I think):






    - Bye-Bye 2000 D :






    - Hellcat?:




    - 1st Canon shooting campaign for Mirage 2000 5:




    - Guns are ready May 2013?:




    Yours sincerely,

    No one

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    Posted (edited)

    Dear Gentlemen,




    Here in English with great pictures: Inside France's small but mighty force in Djibouti (key.aero)


    A video where one can see the patches: 



      Squadron insignia (this is an earlier insignia it will get the homologation Air A.1066 1976) Drago Paris: 





    - challenge coins:








    - key ring:




    - stickers:





    Yours sincerely,

    No one


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    Dear gentlemen,


    Reading about the life of Lt. Colonel J. WADDELL here: 

    I came across this picture "Lieutenant Francois de Boigne N82 et SPA 69":






    Yours sincerely,

    No one

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    Posted (edited)

    Dear Gentlemen,


    Lieutenant François Boigne (-de)

    French nationality

    Licensed as a military pilot on 25 August 1916 (licence n°4340)

    N 82 Squadron and SPA 69

    Born on 18/08/1896 in Noyon (Oise)

    Died on 23/08/1970 in Neuilly (Hauts-de-Seine) (Natural death.)




    Here is a short biography in English of François de Boigne - Wikipedia


    And this one: SOURCES Dossier individuel SHD n°1P 20131/2


    Translation google:


    "François, Eugène, Marie, Antoine de Boigne was born in Noyon, in the Oise, on August 18, 1896. Contrary to appearances, it was in Savoy, in the city of Chambéry, that his family ties were located: he came from an illustrious family of the nobility of the department, having given generations of notables, the founder of the "dynasty" being Benoist Le Borgne (1751-1830), who became Benoît Le Boigne, an adventurer who made his fortune in India and became a monarchist supporter showered with honours by Louis XVIII. His grandson, Charles Marie Ernest de Boigne (1829-1895) became deputy and mayor of Chambéry and had a son, Elzéar de Boigne, who decided to make a career in the army. Married to the daughter of a count, Mademoiselle Hélène de Mandat de Grancey, he was a lieutenant of cavalry in the 9th cuirassiers of Noyon when François was born. But he was killed in a fall from his horse in 1902 and the young boy was raised with his younger brother by his mother known as the Countess Elzéar de Boigne, who lived at the Château du Buisson-rond in Chambéry and who remained very active in the social life of the time, the press reporting all his trips on holiday including the monarchist daily L'Action Française, to which she is a loyal subscriber. She makes sure to provide a careful education for her children.

    When the war broke out in August 1914, François was an 18-year-old student who had not yet fulfilled his military obligations and was not yet eligible for mobilization. He nevertheless decided to enlist voluntarily to participate in the fighting, going to the recruitment office of the Chambéry City Hall on November 11, 1914, with his mother's authorization. He was then incorporated as a private 2nd class in the 9th Hussar Regiment where he attended his classes and remained assigned to the depot of his regiment for several months where he received his brigadier's stripes in March 1915. It was not until 27 May 1915 that he left for the front to join the bulk of his regiment then assigned as a second-line unit in the trenches in Champagne – several detachments taking part in the attack on Champagne in September 1915, before finding themselves assigned to a quiet sector of the front near Montbéliard, near Belfort. The attack on Verdun sent the 9th Hussars to the sector where it was only used to police behind the lines. Throughout this period, Brigadier de Boigne served in the 2nd squadron of the regiment, more to fight boredom than the enemy, if we are to believe the register of punishments where he collected nearly 40 days of accumulated instruction for various acts of negligence in garrison life or acts of bad temper towards his superiors.

    He then volunteered to join the aeronautical service and was accepted as a student pilot in June 1916, reaching the flying schools from which he graduated and assigned to the N 82 squadron on January 2, 1917. The unit was then stationed on the Fontaine airfield near Belfort, in a sector of the front that was reputed to be rather calm. It remained there until April 1917, when the unit was assigned to the Bonnemaison (Lhéry) airfield in Champagne to take part in the air offensive following the attack on the Chemin des Dames, where the air battles took on a completely different scale. It was there that Brigadier François de Boigne obtained his first aerial victory at the controls of his Nieuport, on 3 May 1917, by shooting down an enemy aircraft that fell into the French lines with his squadron leader Captain Echard. Mentioned and promoted to the rank of Marshal of Logs, he remained in this sector with his squadron until 4 November 1917, when it flew to Italy.

    Following the defeat at Caporetto, the Italian army began a chaotic retreat to the west and was only able to recover along the Piave River, at the cost of abandoning much of its heavy equipment, including half of its aircraft, with its strength falling to 200 aircraft in the line. The N 82 squadron was then sent to the other side of the Alps to rescue the Italian ally, along with several other army corps squadrons, and another fighter squadron, the SPA 69. The Nieuport 27s of the N 82 squadron were recognized by the head of the French air force in Italy as inferior aircraft to German aircraft. But the enemy facing the French on this front was the Austrian air force, whose equipment was far from being up to that of its German ally, which allowed the French pilots of the N 82 to face the enemy on an equal footing. Installed in Verona on 4 November 1917, the N 82 had more to risk from the winter weather and the configuration of the front, made up of mountains, than from the action of the enemy air force. Most of the losses come from pilots crashing in the wild following a mechanical failure, and having no flat ground to land... For the Marshal of the Lodges François de Boigne, the skies over Italy will be synonymous with success. He was promoted to the rank of second lieutenant on 26 January 1918 and the following month, on 24 February 1918, he won a "double" by shooting down two Austrian aircraft obtained in collaboration with Captain Echard – one falling on Monte Paole, the other north of Possagno. This new exploit earned him a citation in the order of the army on 28 March and the bronze medal of Italian military valor. On 23 March 1918, he again claimed an aircraft that fell on the town of Montebello but which was not approved for him, then, on 25 March 1918, a two-seater fell under fire north of Montebelluna which was approved for him in collaboration with Sergeant Bolland, his 4th victory as specified in his new citation in the order of the army dated 21 May 1918. With his three sure victories and one probable, he is the best French fighter pilot in Italy. His successes were hailed by Commander Houdemon, head of the French military aeronautical mission, who noted the impetuous side of his 21-year-old pilot, whom he considered to be "very young in character and not very serious. »

    Returning to France on 10 April 1918 in Etampes, he immediately left for the front in the Oise with the N 82, re-equipped with SPAD fighters, to try to contain the German offensive launched on the sector in the hope of obtaining a decisive victory before the arrival of the American troops. It was there that he obtained his last successes: he shot down a fighter on Craonne with two crew members on 27 May 1918, which earned him a new citation on 16 June 1918. His last approved victory was obtained alone, on 19 July 1918. Transferred to the SPA 69 squadron on 16 September 1918, he ended the war in Lorraine with a final score of 6 approved victories and two probable.

    Staying a few more months in the squadron, he was demobilized on July 17, 1919, and returned to civilian life. He retired to the family castle of Le Buisson-Rond in Chambéry and had to think about his reconversion. To do this, he followed the path of his distant ancestor who had gone on an adventure in India: in 1926 he became a flight instructor in China at Shantung, where he opened an aviation school at the request of the local warlord and where he added nearly 400 hours to his flight logbook.

    Returning to France after 1932, he found a job in the sales department of the Bugatti factory in Molsheim, being intimate with the management of the company since he frequented the daughter of the famous Italian manufacturer, Miss Lidia Bugatti, whom he married on March 11, 1940 in the presence of many personalities.

    When the Second World War broke out, he was again mobilized with his rank of lieutenant: having completely neglected his periods of training in the reserves, he was promoted to this rank in 1924 and received no further promotion. As soon as he was mobilized, he obtained a special assignment at the request of his management to the Bugatti factory in Molsheim, which was retreating to Bordeaux. His special assignment was not renewed and on May 16, 1940 he was assigned to the Tours air base, to the air battalion n°109.

    Demobilized after the debacle, he retired to Chambéry at Le Buisson-Rond and no details are known about his action during the occupation, as he was not a member of the resistance or collaboration. The Air Force struck him off the list on 18 August 1948 once he had reached the age limit for his rank. Active in social life and frequenting the Kennedy brothers in the 1950s, he died on August 23, 1970 at the American Hospital in Neuilly."


    Yours sincerely,

    No one

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    Posted (edited)

    Dear Gentlemen,


    Some pictures:


    - SPA 88 Le Serpent: Traditions des escadrilles de l'Armée de l'air (traditions-air.fr)


    The links don't link directly:











    - SPA 69 Tête de chat: Traditions des escadrilles de l'Armée de l'air (traditions-air.fr)










    Yours sincerely,

    No one


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    • 2 weeks later...

    Dear Gentlemen,


    Two new insignias of the SPA 69 & SPA 88 from Arthus-Bertrand / AB:






    On the body of the snake one can read this motto "AU MÉPRIS DU DANGER"





    Yours sincerely,

    No one

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