Category Archives: Belgium

The Original Camouflage: Khaki Part V – Khaki in Colonial Africa and the Middle East

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Portuguese soldiers in Africa during World War I wearing the newly introduced khaki 1900 pattern uniform

Khaki was used throughout the colonial world by most of the major powers, and in many ways the First World War was the first conflict where the parties fought with virtually the same colored uniforms. While khaki, as we noted in part I of this feature on The Original Camouflage, was introduced in India, other powers including France and Germany – as noted in previous posts – also opted for the dust-colored fabric. Other armies, including the Belgians, Portuguese, Spanish and Turks would don khaki colored uniforms. Continue reading

Colonial Pattern Helmets of the Force Publique

A studio photograph of an officer of the Force Publique – wearing a French Model 1886 pattern helmet

A studio photograph of an officer of the Force Publique – wearing a French Model 1886 pattern helmet

Belgian Congo was an interesting state, as it was originally the “Congo Free State” and was the private property of King Leopold II of Belgium. As such it was administrated through a quasi-private military force, the Force Publique (Public Force). Continue reading