Belgium is littered with interesting statues and sculptures but there seems to be a boar frenzy. In Belgium, the wild boar is a symbolic animal of the Ardennes forests in the south of the country. More importantly, the wild boar served as a symbol of bravery and the warrior spirit. The infamous Belgian infantry regiment Chasseurs Ardennes (Hunters of the Ardennes), chose the wild boar as their insignia and wore a boars’ head badge on their green beret.
This regiment was created to guard the eastern border of Belgium from German attacks. At the beginning of WWII, the Chasseurs Ardennes regiment only consisted of 35,000 men and would later get involved in some of the fiercest battles on Belgian ground. Despite their numbers, the Chasseurs Ardennes were in charge of defending a long front and were not intended to be a strong defense. Their main goal would be to delay their enemies by using obstacles and long range fire in the dense terrain.
Due to Belgium’s declaration of neutrality in 1936, there was no coordination between Belgium and the Allies because they believed that the German Government would keep their promise and not invade them. Because of this neutrality, the Belgian military was reorganized to be only a defensive force and began to fortify the country. While the Allies would be fending off the German attacks in the north of Belgium, they didn’t know that the Germans were using this as a smoke screen to send their main forces through the dense terrains of the Ardennes forests to the Meuse River. This was the worst possible situation for the Chasseurs Ardennes, because they would face a heavy concentration of troops and tanks that they were not prepared for.
This regiment became well known in Belgium for putting up a fierce resistance against the Nazi invasion of WWII. They lived by the motto “resist and bite” and even when outgunned and pushed into a corner they didn’t back down. In one battle, a single 47mm antitank gun managed to destroy and disable five German tanks before taking serious damage. Recently a band named Sabaton released a song called “Resist and Bite” which tells of the heroics of this company of soldiers.
Post by Arvin Ramdas