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Swiss Army flags

Last modified: 2023-09-30 by martin karner
Keywords: switzerland | army | military | military colours | military flags |
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[Swiss flag] image by António Martins-Tuválkin, 3 January 2006

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Swiss Army flags

According to Crampton "The Complete Guide to Flags", the Swiss army flag is "as national with gold fringe and cravat in the national colors" (p. 57).
Randy Young
, 11 February 2001

Concerning the colour system of Swiss army flags, like other modern armies who need fewer and fewer people today, the Swiss army has reduced its troop stocks in the recent reform which went into effect on January 1, 2004. Before, there were some sorts of troops (e.g. the infantry) which still had cantonal units. The name of the canton was written on one side of the flag, the unit designation on the other side. Additionally there was attached a cravat in cantonal colours (see T.F. Mills' notes on our Swiss cantons war flags page). After the reform there aren't any more enough people from each canton to build their own cantonal units. Now there are only federal units. The unit designation is written (in fact stitched) now on both sides of the flags and the cravat has the national colours. The discarded cantonal flags are stored now in the different cantonal armouries and the federal flags in the Federal Armoury in Bern. There are proposals for a museum for the old federal flags, and maybe also for the cantonal flags. For these informations I thank Mrs. Sturm from the Federal Armoury in Bern who is in charge of mending and storing the army flags.
Martin Karner, 8 July 2004

Territorial Divisions

The Joint Operation Command of the Swiss Armed Force is composed of four Territorial Divisions (until 1 January 2018, Territorial Regions):
- Division territoriale 1, headquartered in Morges, covers Geneva, Vaud, Valais, Fribourg, Neuchâtel, Jura, and Bern.
- Territorialdivision 2, headquartered in Aarau, covers Lucerne, Obwalden, Nidwalden, Solothurn, Basel Land, Basel Stadt, and Argau;
- Territorialdivision 3, headquartered in Altdorf, covers Uri, Schwyz, Zug, Graubünden and Ticino.
- Territorialdivision 4, headquartered in St. Gallen, covers Schaffhausen, Zurich, Thurgau, St. Gallen, Appenzell Ausserrhoden, Appenzell Innerrhoden, and Glarus.
Ivan Sache, 4 December 2019

Territorial division 1

[Swiss flag] image by Ivan Sache, 4 December 2019

The flag of Territorial Division 1, hoisted in Morges (Vaud) in front of its headquarters, is white with the division's emblem.

[It is highly probable that the the other divisions also have a white flag with their respective emblem, which is the same but the respective number and "Territorialdivision" instead of "Division territoriale", since they cover the German-speaking part of Switzerland.]
Ivan Sache, 4 December 2019

Brigade mécanisée 1

[BM flag] image by Ivan Sache

Brigade mécanisée 1, one of the units constituting the Land Forces of the Swiss Armed Forces, is composed of 6 Battalions and 1 Group.
The flag of Brigade mécanisée 1, hoisted in Morges in front of its headquarters, is white with the division's emblem.
The Latin motto reads "always loyal".
Ivan Sache, 4 December 2019